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San Diegans’ allegedly fake athletic profiles revealed in college admission scandal

SAN DIEGO -- More details are emerging about how two prominent San Diego residents allegedly took advantage of a massive college admissions scheme dubbed "Operation Varsity Blues."

The evidence listed against former CBS 8 owner Elisabeth Kimmel and local insurance executive Toby MacFarlane includes fake athletic profiles. Prosecutors say parents paid college coaches to claim that their children were sports recruits, helping them gain admission despite the fact that they were not competitive players.

In the case of Kimmel's son, for example, a photo claims to show him pole-vaulting. But his high school has no record of him participating in the event -- or track and field in general -- according to the documents. For Kimmel's daughter, investigators say the family paid a Georgetown tennis coach $244,000 to accept her as a "nationally ranked tennis recruit," despite her never competing in the US Tennis Association.

This photo, part of an allegedly fake athletic profile for a prominent San Diegan's son, purports to show him pole vaulting. But the young man's school has no record of him participating in track and field, an indictment claims.

In a similar scheme, MacFarlane is accused of beefing up his son and daughter's athletic profiles as soccer and basketball stars who were recruited to USC. But investigators say there is no record of them playing at the schools after their admission.

MacFarlane was arraigned in federal court and then released until the time of his next appearance. Kimmel had been scheduled to appear in federal court Wednesday, but it was announced at the last minute that she will make her first court appearance in Boston instead.

Dozens were arrested and charged for the nationwide scheme that helped students gain admission to some of the nation's top universities Tuesday. Among those charged and arrested include actresses Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman.

The investigation involved alumni and aspiring student athletes at University of San Diego, UCLA, USC, Georgetown University, Stanford University, University of Texas, Wake Forest and Yale.

USD issued the following statement to FOX 5:

"The University of San Diego has been cooperating with the United States Department of Justice’s investigation involving an alleged criminal conspiracy to facilitate cheating on college entrance exams and admission into colleges and universities.

We have no reason to believe that any members of our admissions team, our administration or staff, or our current coaching staff were aware of or involved in the alleged wrongdoing. We believe the federal government agrees with this assessment."

The scandal revolves around William Rick Singer, who is accused of running a for-profit college preparation business called "The Key."

The indictment reveals Singer paid college coaches to claim that a prospective student should be accepted to college because the student was a recruit for their sports team. However, Singer and the coaches knew that the student was not a competitive player and that his or her athletic profile was fake, the indictment said.

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