Stanford sailing coach indicted, fired then pleads guilty

John Vandemoer was fired as Stanford's head sailing coach after an indictment was unsealed today that accuses him of accepting bribes to get students into Stanford.

BY ALLISON LEVITSKY
Daily Post Staff Writer

Stanford’s head sailing coach pleaded guilty yesterday (March 12) to a charge of racketeering conspiracy after he promised to help a scammer get students into Stanford as an athletic recruit in exchange for $270,000.

John Vandemoer, 41, of Stanford, was fired yesterday morning after federal prosecutors released the indictment against him and others involved in the scheme, which was orchestrated by Rick Singer of Newport Beach.

In the summer of 2017, Vandemoer agreed to designate a student as a recruit for the sailing team, in exchange for a payment to the sailing program.

The student’s application contained falsified information claiming he was a competitive sailor.

In May, after the student deferred his application for a year, Singer mailed $110,000 from a supposed charitable account to the Stanford sailing program in exchange for Vandemoer’s agreement to designate the applicant as a sailing recruit.

Last summer, after the applicant decided to go to a different university, Vandemoer agreed to use the same recruiting spot for the child of another of Singer’s clients in exchange for a $500,000 payment to the Stanford sailing program.

Singer allegedly created documents falsely indicating that the teen was a competitive sailor, despite his minimal sailing experience.

The second applicant didn’t end up applying, but Singer still mailed a $160,000 check to the Stanford sailing program. Vandemoer agreed that the payment would serve as a “deposit” for a future student’s recruitment.

Vandemoer is scheduled to be sentenced on June 12 in Massachusetts. He has been released on his own recognizance.

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