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Florida college owner pleads guilty to illegal contributions

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The majority owner of Dade Medical College has pleaded guilty to charges that he made over $159,000 in illegal campaign contributions.

The Miami Herald reports that Ernesto Perez pleaded guilty Monday. He will avoid prison time under a plea agreement, but he must serve two months of house arrest, along with three years of probation. He must also pay $200,000 in fines and donations.

An affidavit says Perez repeatedly asked employees to write campaign contribution checks. Perez would then reimburse his employees for the amount, in violation of state law.

Perez announced the closure of all six campuses of the for-profit college Oct. 30 after mounting debt and scrutiny from the U.S. Department of Education.

Republished with permission of the Associated Press.

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