Chump Change

As threatened, Federal Magistrate Judge Sallie Kim held the Education Depaartment in contempt and assigned a $100,000.00 fine for continuing to attempt to collect debts from students of Corinthian Colleges.

That amount is chump change to someone like Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, even it had been assigned to her.

She needed to spend a few days in jail, because these actions were deliberately thwarting the judge’s instructions:

A federal judge on Thursday held Education Secretary Betsy DeVos in contempt for violating an order to stop collecting loan payments from former Corinthian Colleges students.

Magistrate Judge Sallie Kim of the U.S. District Court in San Francisco slapped the Education Department with a $100,000 fine for violating a preliminary injunction. Money from the fine will be used to compensate the 16,000 people harmed by the federal agency’s actions. Some former students of the defunct for-profit college had their paychecks garnished. Others had their tax refunds seized by the federal government.

“There is no question that the defendants violated the preliminary injunction. There is also no question that defendants’ violations harmed individual borrowers,” Kim wrote in her ruling Thursday. “Defendants have not provided evidence that they were unable to comply with the preliminary injunction, and the evidence shows only minimal efforts to comply.”


In September, the federal agency revealed in a court filing that former Corinthian students “were incorrectly informed at one time or another … that they had payments due on their federal student loans” after Kim put a hold on collections in May 2018.


Attorneys for the borrowers proposed an array of sanctions, including fining DeVos $500 per day until the Education Department is fully compliant with the original court order.

Toby Merrill, director at the Project on Predatory Student Lending, a legal-aid group representing the students, said the “rare and powerful action to hold the Secretary of Education in contempt of court shows the extreme harm” of DeVos’s actions.

Fine, schmine, DeVos Should have spent some time in jail.

DeVos probably spends more on berthing costs for her yacht than the $500.00/day proposed by the borrowers.

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