Home Gambling Industry Former MGM, Wynn Resorts executive Gamal Aziz sentenced over college admissions scandal

Former MGM, Wynn Resorts executive Gamal Aziz sentenced over college admissions scandal

11 Feb 2022
3 min. read

Gamal Aziz
Gamal Aziz, a long-time casino executive, was sentenced Wednesday to federal prison following his October conviction for participation in a nationwide college admissions scam in the US.

A federal judge ordered Aziz, now 64, to serve 366 days in federal prison, and pay a $250,000 penalty after his October conviction in Boston by a jury on two counts of conspiracy.

Aziz, once a Wynn Resorts and Wynn Macau executive, was charged with one of the 57 individuals in the "Varsity Blues" scheme in which wealthy parents conspired with a college recruiter for fraudulent college profiles to help their children enroll in top-ranked universities.

After prosecutors claimed that Aziz had paid $300,000 in bribes in 2018, to get his daughter into the University of Southern California as a basketball player, Aziz was convicted.

Aziz quit the gaming industry in September 2016 after he resigned his position as Wynn Macau president. He served three years as Wynn Resorts' president of development and was responsible for overseeing both foreign and domestic expansion.

Before that, Aziz was an MGM Resorts executive for 18 years. He held the positions of president of MGM Grand Las Vegas for 13 years and of MGM Hospitality for five years. This position saw him oversee international non-gaming expansion.

According to Reuters, Aziz, who was identified in the complaint as Gamal Adbelaziz, requested that US District Judge Nathaniel Gorton show mercy for his family by limiting his sentence to four months.

Aziz, however, was deemed to have shown a "lack of integrity, morality, or common sense" in his participation in the scandal.

Aziz was the first person to face trial in the bribery scam that was exposed in 2019. Federal law enforcement officials and the prosecutor filed hundreds of suits against the parents. This included Hollywood celebrities and wealthy financial officers. The allegations were that they conspired with William "Rick" Singer, a California college admissions consultant, to fraudulently secure college placements for their children.

37 of the 57 defendants pleaded guilty to lesser charges and served minimal jail time. This included actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin. Nine months is the longest sentence that a parent pleading guilty was given. Aziz, who pleaded not guilty, was convicted alongside John Wilson, the founder of a private equity firm.

Aziz was accused of having bribed a USC senior associate athletic director to help his daughter recruit for the USC basketball team and get her admitted to the university.

He is accused of having paid USC a $300,000.00 donation to its gift account for Galen Center, USC's arena for basketball and volleyball, and $20,000 per month to the senior athletic director.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Aziz, an Egyptian native, is listed as the chairman and CEO of Legacy Hospitality Group. His attorney stated that he would appeal the conviction.

11 Feb 2022
3 min. read