California Mom Who Claimed Her White Son Was Black And Latino To Get Him Into College Sentenced To Prison
50-year-old Marjorie Klapper of Menlo Park, California is the latest criminal to be convicted in the college admissions scandal which earlier ensnared Lori Laughlin and Felicity Huffman.
In court, Klapper was found guilty of paying exorbitant amounts of money to inflate her sons' standardized test scores while also claiming one of them was Black, Latino and a first generation college student.
After pleading guilty to "one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud" in May, Klapper was sentenced to three weeks in prison, one year of supervised release, 250 hours of community service and a fine of $9,500.
Because of her claims about her son's race, US Attorney Andrew E. Lelling said the sentence against Klapper was more lenient than he believes she deserved.
"Ms. Klapper thereby not only corrupted the standardized testing system, but also specifically victimized the real minority applicants already fighting for admission to elite schools."
After Klapper's eldest son scored a 2140 out of 2400 on the SATs, Educational Testing Service, who administers the exam, prepared to cancel the score due to drastic improvement from practice tests and extremely similar answers to another student.
Klapper paid Rick Singer, who took part in many of the admission scandals, to say he had given her son 170 hours of private training to improve his test results.
ETS nullified the scores anyway.
Two years later, Klapper would reach out to Singer again to have her younger son take the ACTs at his rigged test center in West Hollywood.
For $15,000, the proctor improved her son's test scores to 30 out of 36 after he had completed the test.
Prosecutors then claimed Klapper paid Singer to falsify records of her sons' heritage.
"She purposefully sought to portray her son as a minority, and the child of parents who did not attend college, despite the fact that he was neither, because she thought that lie would further bolster his college prospects."
"She thereby increased the likelihood that her fraud would come at the expense of an actual minority candidate, or an applicant who was actually the first in his or her family to attend college."
Klapper's attornies, who requested no additional prison time, wrote in a memo:
"Mrs. Klapper's motives were maternal but her execution misguided and illegal. Beyond question, Ms. Klapper allowed her zeal to over-reach, for which she profoundly regrets and takes full responsibility."
Have you listened to the first season of George Takei's podcast, 'Oh Myyy Pod!'?
In season one we explored the racially charged videos that have taken the internet by storm.
We're hard at work on season two so be sure to subscribe here so you don't miss it when it goes live.
Here's one of our favorite episodes from season one. Enjoy!