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Seven arrested in SAT cheating scandal

Seven students in Long Island, N.Y., have been arrested for cheating on the SAT.

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Seven students in Long Island, N.Y., were arrested Tuesday morning for cheating on the SAT.

Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice said six students from Great Neck North High School in Mineola allegedly paid an Emory University sophomore between $1,500 and $2,500 to take the SAT for them, ABC News reports.

The Emory student, 19-year-old Sam Eshaghoff of Great Neck, was arrested on charges of scheming to defraud, criminal impersonation and falsifying business records, The Associated Press reports.

Eshaghoff's attorney, Matin Emouna, told the AP that his client would plead not guilty. "He has cooperated with the investigation, and he denies the charges," Emouna said.

The six high-schoolers, who were not identified because of their ages, were arrested on misdemeanor charges. The investigation continues, and more students could be charged, prosecutors said.

Students must show photo I.D. and an admission ticket before being allowed to take the SAT, but Eshaghoff fooled test administrators by presenting fake identification featuring his photo and the name of the student he was pretending to be, ABC News reports.

According to ABC News:

Early this year, faculty members from the high school heard rumors that students had paid someone to take the test for them. An investigation led to the identification of six students who had taken the test at different schools where they would not be identified and whose test scores seemed out of line with their grades in school.

"These arrests should serve as a warning to those taking the SAT this Saturday that if you cheat, you can face serious criminal consequences,” District Attorney Rice said on Tuesday, according to NPR.

The scandal is an embarrassment for Great Neck North High School, one of the highest-ranked public schools in America.

"The Great Neck School District does not tolerate cheating and we remain committed to cooperating with law enforcement in this matter," school district officials said in a statement, ABC News reports. "It is our hope that the actions currently being taken by the District Attorney's Office will serve to bring an end to any dishonest practices which may have placed students at an unfair disadvantage and will also bring to light any shortcomings in the security of the SAT testing system."