Bogus Diploma Mill Bust Nets Almost 10,000 Buyers

Jason Morris

There are almost 10,000 job seekers out there using fake diploma’s from this one operation.  We have written about diploma mills before, there are hundreds if not thousands of them.  Conducting a thorough background check will identify if your applicant’s education is on a diploma mill list.  Just last week, employeescreenIQ uncovered several unaccredited universities for our clients.  A nice justification for the cost of a thorough employment background investigation!

Bogus Diploma Mill Bust Nets Almost 10,000 Buyers

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

(MCT) CHICAGO—The network of bogus universities was a family-run venture based in rural Washington state, but the criminal enterprise spanned the globe, with operators allegedly paying bribes to Liberian officials and selling fake Ph.D.s and M.D.s as far away as Iran.

They were arrested by state and federal officials with the help of a physics professor.

George Gollin, professor of physics and Fermilab physicist at Illinois, helped unravel the scheme that has resulted in eight guilty pleas this year.

The investigation could spark further charges against hundreds of people who may have bought and used bogus diplomas.

Dubbed “Operation Gold Seal” by federal investigators, the case exploded into the national news with the publication of the names of some 9,600 possible buyers of junk degrees from the phony “St. Regis University” and at least 120 affiliated institutions operated by Dixie and Steven K. Randock Sr.

Claims to advanced degrees from diploma mills and other unaccredited schools are burgeoning, costing taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars a year as state and federal employees use phony credentials to bump up their salaries, Gollin said.


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Jason Morris

President & Chief Operating Officer at EmployeeScreenIQ
A veteran screening and risk management professional, Jason Morris founded EmployeeScreenIQ in 1999 and acts as the company’s chief operating officer and president. Morris is a frequent speaker delivering captivating, interactive discussions on background checks, global screening, recruitment and staffing. He educates audiences in best practice initiatives as they relate to organizational employment screening programs. Morris has been quoted in numerous business and industry publications including The Wall Street Journal,, USA Today, New York Times, among others. He is also a licensed private investigator in the states of Ohio, Illinois, New Jersey, Texas, Arizona and Nevada.
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  • As the President of Regis University in Denver, Colorado, I am especially aware of the damage done by degree mills like St. Regis, which has injured the reputation of my school. Founded in 1877, the real Regis has 15,000 students seeking legitimate degrees at our American campuses and online.

    In contrast, St. Regis was a fraud masquerading as a legitimate school. It is important that potential students, regulators, and employers differentiate between the legitimate institutions of higher learning and the criminals who cheat the public by using names that trade on the good reputation of real schools.

  • GoldSealVictim

    The public should also be aware that many persons on the list could be completely innocent and entitled to compensation. I have never even sought a degree outside of my own country and have had my credentials evaluated and my name is on the list! I have never even dealt with these people!

    I have a feeling I’m not the only screw-up by the DOJ and that there will may be a class action suit filed by people who have never even heard of this diploma mill before their names showed up on the leaked version of the list! My suspicion is that the list includes names of people who sent spam complaints to Interpol, comsumer protection and ORA.. In any case I am ready to sue, if there’s not a believable explanation for my name appearing on that list.

  • Anonymous

    tough luck