RICO Charge Not Fit for “Varsity Blues” Coaches

Water Polo Team

Law360 reported on a three-hour hearing in front of U.S. District Judge Indira Talwani regarding whether conspiracy counts should be dismissed in the “Varsity Blues” case.

“Federal prosecutors have no business hitting coaches and officials in the ‘Varsity Blues’ college admissions case with a racketeering charge,” Law360 reported that the attorneys for the five defendants argued.

Partner Kori L. Bell, who is representing former University of Southern California water polo coach Jovan Vavic along with partners Stephen G. Larson and Paul A. Rigali, argued, “Here, the government has charged really a sprawling and disjointed group of coaches from different schools, an athletic administrator, a test administrator and [William ‘Rick’] Singer associations, most of whom are located in different states across the country and never met each other or agreed to engage in any conduct with one another, let alone illegal conduct.”

Kori continued to say that, “there is not a single case that supports [the government’s] theory of the alleged crimes falling under the RICO umbrella . . . The government seems to think that all they need to do is show, ‘Does this individual have a general understanding of the enterprise?’ That’s clearly insufficient.”

The hearing also addressed whether “the admissions slots that were allegedly sold to the highest bidder constitute ‘property’ that the various universities were deprived of by Singer’s scheme,” the article reported. In June, the defense referred to the recent “Bridgegate” decision in arguing that the admissions slots are not property.

Read the full article by Chris Villani of Law360 covering the hearing here.


Subscribe to our mailing list

Sign up to get news, client alerts, and other updates from Larson delivered to your inbox.
Get the latest updates via RSS RSS Feed What is RSS?
We use cookies on this site to enhance your experience. By using our website, you accept our use of cookies.