A photo of a scantron test sheet.

A photo of a scantron test sheet. Credit: Newsday/John Paraskevas

At least five students have been asked to surrender Tuesday to the Nassau district attorney's office in the SAT cheating scandal, a source close to the investigation confirmed Thursday.

In addition, sources close to the cheating probe say District Attorney Kathleen Rice has convened a special grand jury to investigate the allegations of widespread cheating on college admissions tests.

That probe could result in criminal indictments, a report or recommendations on the panel's findings, sources and experts said.

The source close to the investigation said a fraction of the more than 35 people investigators have been looking at had been asked to turn themselves in next week.

Some of the students who prosecutors believe cheated on the SAT and ACT exams cannot be charged because their alleged crimes occurred more than two years ago, exceeding the statute of limitations for misdemeanors, sources said.

In September, prosecutors arrested seven current and former students at Great Neck North High School on charges that they took part in a cheating ring in which students paid a former student $1,500 to $2,500 to assume their identities and take the test. The accused test taker, Sam Eshaghoff, 19, a 2010 graduate of Great Neck North High School, pleaded not guilty to criminal impersonation and other charges, and was released on bail.

The six students, all from Great Neck North, who allegedly paid him to take the test, were younger than 19 when the alleged crimes occurred and were charged as youthful offenders, prosecutors said. They face misdemeanor charges.

Effects of the scandal have reverberated beyond Long Island, with SAT officials vowing a sweeping review of their security procedures during a state legislative hearing in Farmingdale.

Rice spokesman John Byrne said last week that investigators suspect at least 31 people may have hired as many as six people to take either the ACT or SAT test. Byrne said those investigators are also looking at the roles of at least three ACT test-takers and at least four SAT test-takers, though one person may have accepted money to take both tests, Byrne said.

The students being investigated attended five schools, two public and three private, Byrne said last week. He did not identify the schools.

As recently as last week, Byrne said investigators were still waiting for experts to conduct handwriting analysis on some test samples.

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