Ex-UCLA soccer coach took bribes to pay off Century City home

At sentencing for his admitted role in college admissions scandal, Jorge Salcedo said he accepted $200K because he couldn’t afford $1.9M property

Los Angeles /
Mar.March 22, 2021 10:01 AM
Jorge Salcedo and his $2.3 million house. (Getty, Realtor.com)
Jorge Salcedo and his $2.3 million house. (Getty, Realtor.com)

UPDATE, March 23, 6:12 a.m.: Former UCLA soccer coach Jorge Salcedo said he couldn’t afford the $1.9 million Century City home he bought for his family in 2016.

So to get out from under that debt, Salcedo accepted $200,000 in bribes for his part in the now-infamous college admissions scandal.

Salcedo offered up that explanation to a judge last week before he was sentenced to 8 months in federal prison for taking bribes from parents to ensure their children got into UCLA, according to the Los Angeles Daily News.

It marked the second-longest prison sentence handed down in connection with Operation Varsity Blues, which charged real estate executives, Hollywood celebrities and others with cheating. In all, the FBI charged more than 50 people with participating in the scheme, including 33 parents and several college sports coaches.

In 2019, and after prosecutors charged Salcedo, he listed the Century City home for $2.3 million, a slight increase from the amount he had paid for the 2,900-square-foot, four-bedroom property.

Salcedo and other coaches took bribes from consultant Rick Singer, considered the mastermind of the scheme. The coaches falsified scholarship paperwork for the children of Singer’s clients, winning the students spots on teams usually reserved for legitimate athletes.

Salcedo took a $100,000 bribe to recruit the daughter of real estate developer Bruce Isackson and another $100,000 from another parent of a different recruit.

Developer Robert Zangrillo was charged for his role in Operation Varsity Blues. He pleaded not guilty and his trial had been set for September. But former President Donald Trump pardoned Zangrillo during his last hours in office.

Those who pleaded guilty to charges included Isackson and another developer, Robert Flaxman, along with other well-heeled parents like actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin — and her husband.

[LADN] — Dennis Lynch

Correction: A previous version of this article incorrectly stated that Robert Zangrillo had been convicted of charges. His trial date on charges had been set for September before his presidential pardon.


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