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US COLLEGE SCANDAL: David Sidoo Sentenced To Three Months And $250,000 Fine

Recognized for his contributions on and off the football field, Class of 2017 B.C. Hall of Fame inductee David Sidoo escorted wife Manjy to the annual Banquet of Champions gala and auction. (Fred Lee photo) [PNG Merlin Archive]

VANCOUVER – Indo-Canadian businessman David Sidoo’s college admissions scandal ordeal came to an end after a US court sentenced him to 3 months in prison and $250,000 fine. Sidoo had pleaded guilty in March after a plea deal.

Sidoo, who appeared via video, lowered his head into his hands and cried as U.S. District Judge Nathaniel Gorton chided him for his actions from a courtroom in Boston .

Sidoo told the judge he’s “deeply ashamed.”

“I make no excuses. I broke the law. I pled guilty to a crime and now I must pay for my actions,” he said.

Sidoo’s story is a classic example of lapse of judgment by a proud man who’s worked extremely hard to make a name in the business and sports world.

“There are many degrees of ethical lapses and sometimes you don’t ever see them becoming crimes and when they do it’s a shock to the system,” said a friend of Sidoo’s. “David experienced this shock from which he will definitely learn. It’s similar to the way Pandemic will create a new world and this shock to the system will give birth to a new David Sidoo after he finishes paying his dues to society!”

The friend, who didn’t want to be named, said let’s judge a man by his lifelong accomplishments and giving back to his community not by one mistake in the zeal to seek a better future for his kids.

“Let’s judge Sidoo by the touchdowns he’s scored not one fumble? State the facts,” he said.

Judge Gorton acknowledged Sidoo’s contributions, saying, “you’ve made an incredible life for yourself from humble beginnings and helping so many people. And you are a smart person. How could you be so stupid to get involved with someone like that”.

Sidoo received 18 letters of support from politicians, former judges , former coaches , teammates , business associates , former professional athletes all who spoke a about his will to give back to the less fortunate and help the disadvantaged while never seeking notoriety for his good deeds .

The former UBC and CFL football player was found to have paid $200,000 US to have a professional test-writer use false credentials to impersonate his two sons to write their SATs.

According to the prosecution, Sidoo also worked with the scheme’s mastermind, Rick Singer, to concoct a bogus story for one of his son’s college admission essays about the teen being held at gunpoint by a Los Angeles gang before being saved by a rival gang member named “Nugget.”

Sidoo was not available for comment, but a statement issued by his lawyers said he has dedicated his adult life to making positive contributions.

“His life should not be defined by its worst moments, and he is committed to a more productive future,” it reads.

A defence submission dated July 10 contains a list of Sidoo’s charitable works and a description of how he has been affected by being found out.

“Mr. Sidoo is a 61-year-old-man who made a tremendous mistake, out of misplaced love for his sons, that is inconsistent with his entire personal life story,” reads the document. “Furthermore, Mr. Sidoo has suffered both physically and mentally.”

The submission also includes letters of support from more than a dozen people, including Canadian and Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Warren Moon, former B.C. attorney general Wally Oppal, TSN personality Farhan Lalji and former MP and cabinet minister Herb Dhaliwal.

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