College admissions scandal meets foreign bribery

  • A Chinese national has pleaded guilty to bribery after paying to have her son admitted to UCLA.
  • Xiaoning Sui, who lives in Canada, paid $400,000 to a fake charity to get her son a soccer scholarship.
  • However, the son who received the scholarship reportedly did not even play soccer.

A Chinese national pleaded guilty to bribery after paying the University of California-Los Angeles hundreds of thousands of dollars to get her child admitted to the school.

Xiaoning Sui, a Chinese national who lives in British Columbia, Canada, pleaded guilty to one count of bribery after paying the public university $400,000 in exchange for her son being admitted to the school on a fake soccer scholarship. Sui paid the money to admissions consultant Richard Singer, who has also pleaded guilty to federal charges, through a fraudulent charity. Sui also worked with former USC assistant soccer coach Laura Janke to portray Sui's son as a top soccer star in Canada, despite the fact that he did not play soccer. Janke also pleaded guilty. 

[RELATED: Harvard, Yale under federal investigation for shady foreign gifts]

According to the Associated Press, Sui's son was admitted to UCLA in 2018 on a 25 percent scholarship but took “immediate corrective action” after learning of the charges. The latest plea comes amid the college admissions scandal and the alarming rise of Chinese influence on college campuses, on which Campus Reform has reported. 

In June 2019, a UCLA adjunct professor was found guilty of conspiring to steal U.S. missile secrets for China. 

[RELATED: UCLA prof guilty of conspiring to steal missile secrets for China, could face more than 200 years in prison]

And, in August 2019, a University of Kansas professor was indicted for allegedly failing to disclose his ties to China while conducting federally funded research in the U.S. More recently, in January, a Chinese national was arrested for allegedly trying to smuggle Harvard cancer research out of the U.S. to China to publish the research in the communist country under his own name. 

Campus Reform has also reported recently on a Harvard employee who was arrested over undisclosed ties to China. News of that arrest came just days after Emory University neuroscientist was arrested on similar charges, as Campus Reform also reported at the time. 

Sui's guilty plea also comes as federal investigators are scrutinizing foreign money being given to American universities, including Cornell University, the University of Florida, Harvard University, and Yale University

Follow the author of this article on Facebook: @JonStreetDC and Twitter: @JonStreet



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Jon Street
Jon Street | Managing Editor

Jon Street is a news editor for Campus Reform. Six years ago, Jon cut his reporting teeth fresh out of college as an intern at Media Research Center's CNSNews.com, where he interviewed multiple members of Congress and former presidential candidates. From there, he went on to complete a stint at Watchdog.org, where his exclusive, investigative work was picked up or cited by the New York Times, Washington Post, Fox News, National Review, and the Drudge Report, among others. More recently, Jon spent three years as an assistant editor at TheBlaze.com. In his free time, Jon enjoys trying new coffeehouses around the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area and traveling back to his home state of Missouri to spend time with his family.

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