A flamboyant real estate mogul who went to jail for a month in the “Varsity Blues” college admissions scandal killed himself at his Malibu home last week.
Robert Flaxman, 66, was one of dozens of well-heeled and celebrity parents caught in the federal investigation. He pleaded guilty to paying the scheme’s mastermind $75,000 to help his daughter cheat on the ACT college entrance test.
The Real Deal, which first reported Flaxman’s suicide, says the CEO of Crown Realty & Development controlled a $600 million portfolio before he was arrested in 2019.
He threw over-the-top Beverly Hills pool parties, dated a Playboy model, was driven around in Rolls Royces, and used the alias Robert Emerald.
But Flaxman had a troubled daughter and he was desperate for her to land at a four-year college despite her poor grades and personal difficulties, his lawyer said in court papers.
He conspired with Rick Singer to have his daughter take the ACT at a Houston exam center where she got help answering questions from a corrupt proctor—and then wrote off his “donation” to Singer’s fake charity on his taxes.
Flaxman—who bought a $12 million mansion after being indicted—sobbed and pleaded for leniency when he was sentenced. “What I did was wrong and I make no excuses for it,” Flaxman said then.
After his release from prison, Flaxman starting selling off some of his properties and decamped from Beverly Hills to Malibu, according to The Real Deal.
If you or a loved one are struggling with suicidal thoughts, please reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741. You can also text or dial 988.