MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Two more students surrendered to police Monday morning in a growing SAT/ACT cheating scandal in Nassau County.

A total of 20 students are now facing criminal charges.

1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera reports

Michael Pomerantz, 18, faces felony charges for allegedly being paid $500 to take the college entrance exam for another student.

Photos: Suspects In SAT Cheating Scandal Surrender

The other defendant who turned himself in Monday faces a misdemeanor charge for allegedly buying those test taking services. His name is not being released because of his age, but his attorney didn’t waste any time getting the ball rolling.

“I don’t know what the district attorney will do next in this case, but we are ready to fight,” Kevin Keating told CBS 2’s Jennifer McLogan.

Nassau County prosecutors have so far identified 15 alleged test-buyers and filed felony charges against five so-called imposters, including 19-year-old North Shore Hebrew Academy graduate Adam Justin.

Justin, as well as two other accused test takers, Joshua Chefec and George Trane, surrendered Friday.

The SAT-ACT test taking process is now under review by a state Senate subcommittee on higher education.

The accused students’ families and lawyers downplay the seriousness of scandal and are concerned about an overzealous prosecution. They want schools — not courts — handling cheating scandals. However, the investigation is rocking some parts of the affluent North Shore,where students attend some the nation’s elite high schools.

“I don’t think this matter should be criminalized. I think it should remain in the schools and the discipline should be in the schools,” resident Vincent Gerardi said.

“I think it’s very serious. I think they should be punished for their crimes, held accountable, absolutely,” added Kathryn Augeri.

“There is a reason our criminal justice systems is separate and apart from our school system,” Chefec’s attorney, Brian Griffin, said. “This is where the matter belongs.”

Some students disagree.

“I think it is actually a serious case and they should be tried,” one student said. “It’s keeping other kids out of college and not fair. It’s denying people a chance they worked hard for.”

The case against Sam Eshaghoff, the first student charged with a felony for allegedly taking money to take the test, has been postponed pending a possible grand jury investigation.

“We understand this is a nationwide epidemic. It has nothing to do with Nassau County, and that’s what we’ve been saying all along,” Eshaghoff attorney Matin Emouna told McLogan.

Comments (20)
  1. Just Asking says:

    Why are they not arresting those cheating students from the failing school districts instead of targeting the good students?

  2. Laya says:

    Why does it only mention the school of the Yeshiva kid .Two of the kids were from a Catholic school?Ain’t it always so?

  3. Meme Meyagi says:

    what is done about 7 million mooslime terrorists living in usa?

    1. Mecca faces Mars says:

      Sell them tickets to take a flight to Mars on SpaceX.

  4. sLAUGHTER the best medicine says:

    Children of the “privileged” class…this is what they produce? What’s wrong…they are above taking tests?! Is it below their stature to hit the books like everyone else has to?! Take away their books and throw them into a slaughterhouse for a month and let’s see how they like it. Maybe they’ll appreciate the meat that’s so nicely packaged for them in the supermarkets produced by hardworking people. Is this how they show their appreciation? We adults are disappointed beyond words.

  5. Long Island Parent #2 says:

    He was only being a good sport and trying to help his juniors get into college.

    1. Accountability says:

      You must be kidding. Your logic is laughable and tragic.

  6. Jeff Rosen ret NYPD Sgt says:

    So the parents and their ambulance chasers feel it should be an “in school” thing and not a criminal thing. Last I saw Criminal Impersonation is a misdemeaner and forgery is a felony. A little more serious than shooting spitballs or cutting class.

    1. Is mayonaise a instrument says:

      It is amzing how many parents involed in this knew how stupid there kids really are to have have someone take their test.These parent should be proud to raise such brainless a-holes.

  7. Chip Hayhurst says:

    Long Ilslanders- meet your future Congressman!

  8. Long Island Parent says:

    This has been going on since the stone ages. I remember when I was in H.S. we did the same thing and we all became doctors, lawyers, educators, stockbrokers, etc. We became productive members of society and now contribute back to our communities.

    1. Jeff Rosen ret NYPD Sgt says:

      Looking at today’s lawyers, educators, doctors, stockbrokers, etc kind of proves the point that criminal action is needed!!

      1. Accountability says:

        Amen to Mr. Rosen. Obviously this Long Island “parent” is part of the problem. Values, including honesty, integrity, honor, and work ethic start at home. Cheating and scamming your way through life should not be defended and for a “parent” to make excuses for this type of behavior is reprehensible.

    2. LongIslandSux says:

      Well, I have a very different take on this. I ended up at and Ivy coming from a small Midwestern town. You see I had to earn my grades and SATs to end up there.

      Excuse me for expecting the same from my classmates. This cheating scandal doesn’t surprise me in the least. I used to come back from my classes surprised at the academic stupidity of some of my classmates.

      But since I actually am smart, I figured the score out quickly. You’d be surprised about how many of these people had “tutors” to write their papers. I tried to take as many courses that offered tests only (and not of the take home variety).

      You may be productive, but you and people like you are taking away opportunities from the people who truly deserve them.

      It may be the way of the world, but it’s certainly not fair to students like me. The worst part, however, is that it’s ruining this country. Yes, be proud of yourself for scamming the system and destroying our economy. Good job.

      1. cheaters should pay says:

        I agree and the investigation should be about how many corrupt parents that are lawyers, doctors stockbrokers actually put up the cash for the test takers? They should also do time in jail with thier children. Since they are all lawyered up it will never happen

    3. Huh says:

      Oh so that explains the fine mess we’re in!…LMAO!…

  9. Surfin Bird says:

    Why is only the name and photo of Mr. Pomerantz being published? They need to publsih all of the arrestees names.

  10. Marvin Rabinowitz says:

    Families are downplaying it because they are equally culpable. They lack values and like most parents of this generation, are more focused on coddling and befriending their children rather than guiding them through failures and challenges. One too many Bar Mitzvahs in this scandal.

  11. DanTe says:

    Why is he smiling?

    1. Huh says:

      Because he’ll get a slap on the wrist and write a tell all and make millions!

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