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Hot Pockets Heiress Sentenced to 5 Months in Prison Thanks to College Admissions Scandal
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Summary: Hot Pockets heiress was sentenced to five months in prison for her role in the college admissions scandal.

Michelle Janavs, 49, whose family’s company created the microwavable snack Hot Pockets was found guilty for paying $300,000 to help her daughters gain an illicit edge in the college admissions process through fraud and cheating, the Reuters reported.

After Janavs admitted she was among the wealthy parents who took part in the largest college admissions scam and pleaded guilty, her lawyers argued that the heiress deserved only probation.  

  
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While U.S. District Judge Nathaniel Gorton imposed a lower sentence than prosecutors wanted, he rejected Janavs’ request for probation, saying she deserved prison for “deliberately corrupting the college admissions system.” 

Her actions damaged “the entire system of education in this country,” Gorton said in handing down the sentence. “The monetary value of the harm she caused is incalculable.

Janavs was also ordered to pay a $250,000 fine and 200 hours of community service. 

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In court, the Hotpocket heiress said she was “so very sorry that I tried to create an unfair advantage for my children.

Janvas is one of the 53 rich parents who conspired with a California college admissions consultant to use bribes and other forms of fraud to secure the admission of their children to top-tier schools.



Janvas reportedly paid $300,000 in total for her two daughters’ admission to the University of Southern California. According to the charges, she paid the scandal’s mastermind, William “Rick” Singer, $100,000 to doctor college entrance exams and an additional $200,000 to get one of her daughters admitted as a fake volleyball recruit. 

Rick Singer pleaded guilty in March 2019 to charges he facilitated cheating on college entrance exams.

Singer described the different routes to admission in calls recorded by the FBI in 2018. “There is a front door which means you get in on your own,” he said. “The back door is through institutional advancement, which is 10 times as much money. And I’ve created this side door in.

Singer also helped bribe university sports coaches to present his clients’ children as fake athletic recruits.

“Desperate Housewives” actress Felicity Huffman, and “Full House” star Lori Loughlin, are among the 36 parents charged since March 2019.

Huffman was sentenced in September to 14 days in prison.

Janavs’s family co-founded Chef America, the food manufacturer that created the microwave snack line Hot Pockets. The company was sold to Nestle SA for $2.6 billion in 2002.



 

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