Former USC water polo coach Jovan Vavic has been granted a new trial by a Massachusetts judge in the “Varsity Blues” case after the judge found USC could not be considered a “victim” for purposes of the fraud statute according to Law360.
Judge Indira Talwani wrote: “however distasteful, there is nothing inherently illegal about a private institution accepting money in exchange for a student’s admission.”
The judge hinted in June she might grant a new trial.
“What was the evidence here of harm to the university, other than the embarrassment once this came out?” Talwani asked government lawyers. “And, if it’s embarrassment, and you can say that’s a legitimate harm, does that give us a problem … that you’re criminalizing bribery because it’s embarrassing for the employer?”