U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos faces potential sanctions or a finding that she’s in contempt of court for continuing to collect on the debt of former students at bankrupt Corinthian Colleges Inc., going so far as to seize their tax refunds and wages.
“I’m not sure if this is contempt or sanctions,” U.S. Magistrate Judge Sallie Kim told lawyers for the Education Department at a hearing Monday in San Francisco. “I’m not sending anyone to jail yet, but it’s good to know I have that ability.”
The judge said she was “astounded” that the department violated her June order to stop collecting the debts from students, who had been promised refunds of their tuition.
“At best it is gross negligence. At worst it’s an intentional flouting of my order,” Kim warned lawyers for the department.