Actress Lori Loughlin and her husband, style designer Mossimo Giannulli, are pleading not guilty in the college admission bribery scandal.
The couple are amongst 33 charged in the widespread scam, in which parents had been accused of working with their wealth to get their kids into elite colleges.
Loughlin and Giannulli face charges for allegedly paying a US$500,000 bribe to get their two daughters into the University of Southern California as members of the crew group, although they did not participate in crew. The couple had been also charged with a single felony count of mail fraud.
Final week, Loughlin and 16 parents had been indicted with charges of income laundering. According to the indictment, Loughlin and Giannuli paid US$200,000 per kid to a fake charity set up by admissions consultant William Rick Singer. They also paid $50,000 per kid to Donna Heinel, a senior associate athletic director at USC, prosecutors allege. Prosecutors allege that the charity was set up to launder bribe payments, and some had been accused of writing off the payments as charitable deductions on taxes.
Immediately after the scandal broke, Loughlin was dropped by the Hallmark Channel, exactly where she often appeared on the series When Calls the Heart.
Actress Felicity Huffman and a dozen other parents will plead guilty in the scam, the U.S. Attorney’s Workplace announced final week. Huffman was accused of paying US$15,000 to increase her daughters SAT scores.
The former Desperate Housewives star is charged with one particular count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud, and announced final week she will plead guilty.
“I am in complete acceptance of my guilt, and with deep regret and shame more than what I have accomplished, I accept complete duty for my actions and will accept the consequences that stem from these actions,” Huffman mentioned in a statement. “I am ashamed of the discomfort I have triggered my daughter, my family members, my mates, my colleagues and the educational neighborhood. I want to apologize to them and, specially, I want to apologise to the students who perform really hard just about every day to get into college, and to their parents who make tremendous sacrifices to assistance their kids and do so honestly.”
Huffman and Giannulli had been arrested on March 12, and created an initial look in Los Angeles federal court. A judge ordered Giannulli released on US$1 million bail, although Huffman was let go on a US$250,000 bond. Loughlin, who had been shooting When Calls the Heart in Vancouver at the time of the arrests, surrendered to the FBI the following day. She as well was released on a US$1 million bond.
Television and film cast reunions: Nostalgic pictures to give you all the feels