The new indictment said Sidoo faced a charge of conspiracy to commit money laundering, in addition to a charge of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud to which he has already pleaded not guilty.
VANCOUVER – Indo-Canadian businessman David Sidoo, who has been accused of participating in a college-admissions cheating scheme in the United States, said this week that he is innocent and will fight all charges against him including a new one this week of money laundering.
The statement on denial of all charges the US College Admissions scandal was released by a team of three lawyers on behalf of Sidoo on Wednesday, a day after a new indictment from the U.S. District Court in Massachusetts.
The indictment said Sidoo faced a charge of conspiracy to commit money laundering, in addition to a charge of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud to which he has already pleaded not guilty, reported Canadian Press.
Lawyers David Chesnoff, Richard Schonfeld, and Martin Weinberg say Sidoo strongly contests the legal and factual basis for the allegations and will rely on his defence team to defend him in future court proceedings.
Sidoo is a 59-year-old former Canadian Football League player and well-known philanthropist who is among dozens of parents, including actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin, who have been charged in the scandal.
Huffman and 12 other parents agreed to plead guilty on Monday, while Loughlin was among 19 parents named in Tuesday’s indictment as facing a money-laundering charge. Prosecutors have said they will seek a prison sentence of between four and 10 months for Huffman, who is expected to enter her plea on May 24.
U.S. prosecutors allege in the documents that in January 2013 Sidoo wired $100,000 from a Canadian bank account to a California bank account in the name of “the Key.” Court documents describe “the Key” as a for-profit college counselling and preparation business based in Newport Beach, Calif.
The document alleges the defendants conspired with others to “conduct and attempt to conduct financial transactions, to wit, bribe payments and other payments funneled through a purported charitable organization and a for-profit corporation, knowing that the property involved in such transactions represented the proceeds of some form of unlawful activity.”
The new charge, as well as the previous charge to commit mail and wire fraud, each come with a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
Sidoo is a recognized Vancouver businessman, philanthropist, former CFL player, and a mainstay figure in UBC’s athletics program.
He stepped aside from his roles as CEO of two separate companies in Vancouver after being charged.
On top of allegedly helping his own sons, according to court documents, Sidoo is accused of paying an undisclosed amount to help three “children of other co-conspirators” cheat on their SATs and ACTs between 2011 and 2017.
None of the allegations against any of the parents have been proven in court.