For every parent being charged in the "cash for college" scheme, there is a student who benefited from the deceit. Isabelle Henriquez, now a junior at Georgetown University, is a student accused of knowingly and willingly participating in the fraud -- and her alleged involvement could come at a high cost.
The Daily Beast reports that the FBI is alleging that Henriquez, along with her parents -- Manuel and Elizabeth Henriquez -- were knowingly involved in efforts to defraud Georgetown University, the SAT exam board, and potentially the IRS. If found guilty, Mr. and Mrs. Henriquez could go to jail, and Isabelle could lose her credits and degree.
Manuel Henriquez stepped down from his position at the head of Hercules Capital, per The Daily Beast, where he was CEO and founder of the venture debt firm, taking in over $8 million in compensation in 2017. A representative from Hercules confirmed Henriquez's resignation.
"[Manuel Henriquez] has voluntarily stepped aside, but will as continue as a board member and adviser."But while the Henriquez parents are in jeopardy of losing their freedom as a result of their purported participation in this scheme -- one in which they allegedly paid $425,000 to Edge College & Career Network, better known as The Key -- Isabelle Henriquez is notably the only student being accused of knowingly playing a role in the deception. U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts Andrew Lelling made the point of saying that, on the whole, they were not pursuing charges against the students who benefited from the scheme. It seems that Henriquez is the exception.
In the complaint shared by Courthouse News, Isabelle Henriquez was " an active and knowing participant in the cheating scheme that resulted in her acceptance at Georgetown." Her parents hired a proctor to sit with her while she took the SATs, one who reportedly corrected her answers as she went along.
The proctor was flown, on the family's tab, to administer the SAT exam. The exam was allegedly conducted privately at the student's day school, Notre Dame High School. The complaint states that the school was not aware or part of the cheating scheme. After the exam, members of the family -- including the student --reportedly "gloated" that they had cheated and gotten away with it.
But the complaint continues to implicate Isabelle Henriquez in the conspiracy, claiming that the family also worked with The Key to bribe Gordon Ernst, the head Georgetown tennis coach, to designate her a tennis recruit in an effort to cement her application to the school. Henriquez had never played in a tennis tournament during her years in high school.
Included in the complaint was a letter that the prospective student wrote to the Georgetown coach.
"I have been really successful this summer playing tennis around the country. I am looking forward to having a chance to be part of the Georgetown tennis team and make a positive contribution to your team's success."The Raw Story says that while the majority of the students involved in this case were not active participants in the deception, that is not the case with Isabelle Henriquez.