their lawyers, saying they were not aware of Singer’s aims.

The Guos’ attorney, James Spertus, said Singer preyed on Chinese families who were not familiar with

the US education system, and he charged them sums far higher than those he received from his domestic clients.

In China, college admission is based largely on scores attained in the gaokao, the nati

onal college entrance examination, rather than a process involving essays, extracurricular activities and other factors.

Chinese students planning to apply for US colleges usually struggle with the persona

l essay, a critical part of the application process, because the US essay style is hugely different from the Chinese style.

Elizabeth Venturini, owner of Los Angeles admissions consultancy

College Career Results, said: “Unscrupulous college consultants know international stu

dents pay the full tuition price. If they can afford full tuition, they can afford their services.

“To command their high prices, they might promise a wealthy family that their child will

get into a top school by writing their essays, filling out their application, or through other unethical activities.”

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