Greenwich father caught in college cheating scandal due in court

April 1, 2019

A Greenwich lawyer, who will appear before a federal judge in Boston on Wednesday as part of a wide-ranging investigation into an alleged college-admission cheating scandal, will have high-profile lawyers of his own working on his behalf.

According to federal court records, Gordon Caplan will be defended by Peter Cane, a regular commentator for Court TV, and Patrick Smith, described by his law firm as “an experienced trial lawyer and strategist with a practice focused on white collar criminal defense.”

Caplan was among a number of wealthy professionals and celebrities to face a charge of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud. He will appear in court this week with other defendants, including actress Lori Loughlin of “Full House” fame, snared in the cheating scandal centered on William “Rick” Singer and his test-prep business, according to federal authorities.

The initial court appearance will be held before U.S. Magistrate Mary Page Kelly.

Caplan has been released on a $500,000 following his arrest in early March. He was accused of making a $75,000 payment to have his daughter’s answers corrected on her ACT test by a proctor who was being paid off.

The probe by the Federal Bureau of Investigation into illicit efforts to secure college admission spots also led to arrests of other well-known parents, such as actor Felicity Huffman. The federal complaint says a college counseling and preparation business run by Singer used bribes and other techniques to change test results, fake sporting accomplishments or otherwise buy an admission into selective colleges.

Federal officials say phone calls between Caplan and Singer were being taped. Caplan, the former co-chairman of an international law firm, faces a felony conviction, which would mean an automatic disbarment. The mail fraud allegation also carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, and a fine of up to $250,000.

Messages left with Caplan and his lawyers this week were not returned.

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