Lori Loughlin, husband plead guilty over Zoom call in college bribery lawsuit

Lori Loughlin and her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, have both pleaded guilty Friday in a college admissions scam that saw both of their daughters gain entry into University of Southern California.

Lori Loughlin and her fashion designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, pleaded guilty on Friday to paying $500,000 to get their two daughters into the University of Southern California as part of a college admissions bribery scheme.

But a judge has not decided whether he’ll accept their plea deals with prosecutors. Loughlin and Giannulli are scheduled to be sentenced on Aug. 21.

Under the proposed deals, the 55-year-old Loughlin hopes to spend two months in prison and the 56-year-old Giannulli is seeking to serve five months.


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But U.S. District Judge Nathaniel Gorton said at the famous couple’s video hearing that he will decide whether to accept or reject the plea deals after further consideration of the pre-sentencing report.

The couple, who appeared on separate video screens, both sitting with a lawyer, made no comments during the hearing other than to answer the judge’s questions.

The couple have also agreed to pay a combined $400,000 in fines and perform community service.

Loughlin pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud and Giannulli pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud and honest services wire and mail fraud.

Prosecutors agreed to dismiss charges of money laundering and federal programs bribery that were added after the case was filed.


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Loughlin and Giannulli were scheduled to go to trial in October on charges alleging they paid $500,000 in bribes to get their daughters into the University of Southern California (USC) as crew team recruits, even though neither of them participated in the sport.

They had insisted they were innocent and said they believed their payments were legitimate donations.

Earlier this month, the judge rejected their bid to dismiss the case over allegations of misconduct by FBI agents investigating the scam.

Loughlin and Giannulli are among dozens of wealthy parents who were charged with participating in schemes organized by college admissions consultant William (Rick) Singer to bribe coaches and university insiders or cheat on entrance exams. The cases are being prosecuted in federal court in Boston.

Previously released documents show how Loughlin and Giannulli interacted with Singer and how the alleged scam worked for both of their daughters.

Multiple detailed emails show how Loughlin and Giannulli worked with Singer and his associates to create the fake athletic profiles for their daughters, who were pretending to be part of the rowing team, to get into USC.


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Others who have pleaded guilty in the case include Desperate Housewives actor Felicity Huffman. She served nearly two weeks in prison late last year after she admitted to paying $15,000 to have someone correct her daughter’s entrance exam answers.

Loughlin’s daughters, Olivia Jade and Isabella Rose Giannulli, are no longer enrolled at USC following the college admissions scandal.

⁠— With files from the Associated Press

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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