California parent charged and agrees to plead guilty in college admissions case

 

Defendant is the 54th person to be charged in connection with the nationwide college admissions prosecution

Date: May 22, 2020

Contact: newsroom@ci.irs.gov

BOSTON – A California man has been charged and will plead guilty to using fraud and bribery to facilitate his child's acceptance to Georgetown University.

Peter Dameris of Pacific Palisades, Calif., will plead guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud. A plea hearing has not yet been scheduled by the Court.

According to the terms of Dameris' plea agreement, the government will recommend a sentence of time served, 21 months of home confinement, a fine of $95,000 and restitution. Dameris is the 25th parent to plead guilty in this case.

As set forth in the charging documents, Dameris agreed with William "Rick" Singer to pay an amount, ultimately totaling $300,000, to Singer's purported charity, the Key Worldwide Foundation ("KWF"), knowing that the money would be used to facilitate Dameris's son's purported recruitment to Georgetown University as a tennis player, even though he did not play tennis competitively. Singer previously pleaded guilty and is cooperating with the government's investigation.

The charge of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud provides for a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, whichever is greater. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

The details contained in the court documents are allegations and the remaining defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Kristina O'Connell, Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service's Criminal Investigations in Boston, made the announcement today. The Department of Education, Office of Inspector General provided assistance with the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Eric S. Rosen, Justin D. O'Connell, Leslie A. Wright, Kristen A. Kearney, Stephen E. Frank and Karin M. Bell of Lelling's Securities and Financial Fraud Unit are prosecuting the cases.