A former California insurance executive jailed in the college admissions scandal will be freed early after a federal judge ruled his two-week coronavirus quarantine was just as bad as two more months in prison, according to a new report.
Toby MacFarlane, 57, who was hit with a six-month jail sentence for paying $450,000 to get his kids into the University of Southern California as phony athletic recruits, will be cut loose this week following his quarantine stint in a high-security cell in an Arizona jail, Bloomberg News reported.
MacFarlane will now serve the final two months of his sentence at home.
“There exist extraordinary and compelling circumstances which warrant a reduction in MacFarlane’s sentence,” US District Judge Nathaniel Gordon wrote in an order issued last week.
MacFarlane was not allowed a change in clothes during his prison isolation, and was only allowed to shower twice in nine days, Bloomberg reported.
Gordon, who ordered MacFarlane to be released when he completes his quarantine on Tuesday, noted he was a first-time, non-violent offender.
MacFarlane can now complete his final weeks in home detention with electronic monitoring until June 30, the judge said.
MacFarlane in June pleaded guilty in Boston to fraud and conspiracy charges in the case and was sentenced in November. His six-month sentence last year was at the time the longest among a dozen parents sent to jail in the widespread admissions scandal, though others have since received longer stints.
He admitted to paying college admissions consultant William “Rick” Singer — who is at the heart of the scandal — to get his children into USC. Singer pleaded guilty to running the scam, which allowed wealthy parents to pay their kids’ way into top-notch schools like USC, UCLA, Stanford, Yale and Georgetown.
In 2014 MacFarlane paid Singer $200,000 to get his daughter into the school as a phony soccer recruit, and $250,000 in 2017 go get his son in as a fake basketball recruit.
Among the most high-profile parents implicated in the scandal is former “Full House” star Lori Loughlin, who is accused with her fashion designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, of paying Singer $500,000 go get their two daughters into USC as rowing recruits.
They continue to fight the charges.