Actress Lori Loughlin and her fashion designer husband pleaded not guilty in Boston federal court Monday to charges stemming from the largest college admissions scandal the Justice Department has ever prosecuted.
“Full House” star Loughlin, 54, and her 55-year-old husband Mossimo Giannulli are accused of paying $500,000 in bribes to get their two daughters into the University of Southern California under the false pretext that they were part of the school’s rowing team. Neither had ever competitively rowed before.
They were part of $25 million DOJ investigation that netted dozens of wealthy parents and coaches for allegedly scheming to lie and cheat the childrens’ way into colleges like Yale University, University of California-Los Angeles, Stanford University, and other elite schools.
Also caught up in the probe was “Desperate Housewives” star Felicity Huffman, who joined a dozen other parents and pleaded guilty to the charges as part of a plea agreement last week. Loughlin reportedly regrets not accepting a plea agreement, and is now concerned about the prospect of spending time in prison.
The Education Department has opened a separate investigation into the colleges caught up in the scandal, and last month Yale rescinded its first admissions offer tied to the scheme.
Loughlin and Giannulli were indicted last week and face up to 40 years in prison if found guilty of all the charges.