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News & Cast Updates(News section last updated November 2, 2019)
Lori Loughlin To Fight New College Bribery Scheme Charges; Facing 50 Years In Prison, Trial Set For 2020 – Update(11/2/19) As more and more parents in the sprawling college admissions scandal are cutting deals with federal prosecutors for reduced sentences, Lori Loughlin is digging in for a fight as the former Full House star faces decades behind bars.
Hit with new bribery charges late last month, Loughlin and her fashion designed husband Mossimo Giannulli announced today in court filings that they are unsurprisingly pleading not guilty.The couple have also decided not be present at the upcoming November 20 arraignment but could appear at the now additionally scheduled January 17 status conference in what is clearly a case where neither side look inclined to back down.
“Therefore, Ms. Loughlin respectfully requests that the Court to accept this waiver and enter Ms. Loughlin’s plea of not guilty,” declares the bare bones filing Friday by Latham & Watkins lawyers in U.S. District Court in Massachusetts.
That is the same plea the once high flying couple have already made to previous charges of two charges of fraud and money laundering. Caught shelling out $500,000 through a phony foundation, Loughlin and Giannulli were indicted in March along with over 30 other well-heeled parents for illegal efforts they made to get their kids into top tier schools with false credentials and inflated test scores.
Both of the couple’s daughters have since left USC in the spotlight of the scandal.
Likely to go to trial in federal court in Boston in the spring of next year, the once Hallmark Channel regular and Giannulli are mounting a joint defense. That’s a rare and risky proposition that could hobble the duo if things get sticky and one party starts wanting to angle for an agreement with the government and another doesn’t, to put it mildly.
Currently, with the new charge that was made public on October 22, Loughlin and her spouse are facing around 50 years in prison and millions in fine if found guilty.
On the flip side, Felicity Huffman quietly slipped out of a federal prison late last week after serving around 11 days of her 14-day sentence in the ongoing probe.
Lori Loughlin Facing Another 10 Years Behind Bars In New College Bribery Scheme Charges; Looking At 50 Years Total, So Far(10/26/19) Felicity Huffman has finished her prison sentence for her role in the nationwide college bribery scheme, but Lori Loughlin could be looking at a lot longer stretch if found guilty for getting her daughters into USC under false pretenses.
Having plead not guilty this spring to various federal charges from “Operation Varsity Blues,” the former Fuller House star and her husband Mossimo Giannulli are now facing a new bribery claim from the office of the U.S In total, Loughlin and Giannulli are staring down the long road of 50 years in prison and around $1.23 million in fines each. As new of the scandal broke and has grown over the past several months, both of the duo’s daughters have left USC – the high-profile school their parents apparently played fast and loose with the law to get them into.
“Today’s charges are the result of ongoing investigation in the nationwide college admissions case,” said U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling Tuesday after the new indictment (read it here) against the once high-flying couple, STX founder Bill McGlashan, Jr and eight other deep pocketed parents was made public. “Our goal from the beginning has been to hold the defendants fully accountable for corrupting the college admissions process through cheating, bribery and fraud. The superseding indictments will further that effort.”
To be specific, with no new arraignment date set yet, the 11 parents are charged in the third indictment with conspiring “to commit federal program bribery by bribing employees of the University of Southern California (USC) to facilitate their children’s admission. In exchange for the bribes, employees of the university allegedly designated the defendants’ children as athletic recruits – with little or no regard for their athletic abilities – or as members of other favored admissions categories.”
None of which sounds good, clearly. To that end, lawyers for Loughlin and Giannulli did not respond to request for comment on the new charges today.
Having formally plead not guilty in mid-April after turning down a government deal, Loughlin and Giannulli are accused in the well-heeled suspects probe of paying “bribes totaling $500,000 in exchange for having their two daughters designated as recruits to the USC crew team — despite the fact that they did not participate in crew — thereby facilitating their admission to USC,” according to the 200-page indictment made public March 12. Currently out on $1 million dollar bail bond, Loughlin and her fashion designer spouse were hit hard with an additional money laundering charge on April 9 after they rejected the feds’ offer of reduced charges and sentencing recommendations.
In a local TV interview earlier this month, Lelling hinted things were about to get ever tighter for Loughlin and Giannulli. “If it is after trial, we would ask for something substantially higher,” declared the federal prosecutor to Boston’s WCVB of what kind of sentence the couple could face and making a comparison to the 14 days in a cell that American Crime star Huffman received in early September.
Long having entered a guilty plea and thrown herself on the court’s mercy Huffman reported to the Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, CA on October 15. “If she resolved it before trial, something lower than that,” Lelling told the anchors of Loughlin and Giannulli’s chances if they made a deal instead of a taking the case to a jury.
Like Huffman, the still battling Loughlin and her husband are among the most high-profile cases in the more than 30 parents indicted in the nationwide effort of wealthy families to get their children into top schools using underhanded methods and the services of ex-call center manager William Singer and his phony Key Worldwide Foundation.
In fact, today’s superseding indictment draws a profile that leaves little to the imagination. even as the feds close in.
“On or about November 29, 2018, Singer called LOUGHLIN from Boston, Massachusetts,” the 61-page filing says. “During the call, Singer said, in sum and substance, that KWF was being audited by the IRS, which was asking about the two payments of $200,000 by the GIANNULLIS. Singer added: “So I just want to make sure that you know that, one, that you’re probably going to get a call and that I have not told them anything about the girls going through the side door, through crew, even though they didn’t do crew to get into USC. So I-that is-all I told them was that you guys made a donation to our foundation to help underserved kids.” LOUGHLIN replied, “Um-hrrnn.'”
Late this summer, Loughlin and Giannulli convinced a weary federal judge to agree to their potentially disastrous desire to share the same defense team. With that, the duo’s attorneys will next be back in federal court in Boston for a January 17, 2020 status conference.
As the things stand right now, the now newly indicted couple are not expected nor required to be in attendance.
Maude's Bill Macy Dead at 97(10/18/19) Bill Macy (The Edge Of Night), best known to TV audiences for playing Walter to Bea Arthur’s force-of-nature Maude, died on Thursday night at age 97.
His manager, Matt Beckoff, shared the news on Facebook, hailing Macy as “a spitfire right up to the end.” A cause of death has not been disclosed.
Macy’s career in large part kicked off in 1972 with CBS’ Maude, which was a spinoff of All in the Family (Arthur’s character was introduced as a cousin of Edith Bunker). Famously, the sitcom occasionally tackled hot topics such as abortion, alcoholism and domestic violence (Walter once impulsively struck Maude when he couldn’t give up the drink; afterwards, he suffered a breakdown).
On the heels of Maude‘s six-season run, Macy co-starred in the big screen comedy The Jerk, where he helped Steve Martin’s title character unleash the Opti-Grab upon the world.
Macy’s TV credits also included but by no means were limited to St. Elsewhere, L.A. Law, the NBC comedy Nothing in Common, Seinfeld, Jack & Jill and, most recently, a 2010 episode of TNT’s Hawthorne.
Lori Loughlin Looking At “Higher Sentence” Than Felicity Huffman In College Bribery Scandal, U.S. Attorney Says(10/8/19) It will be many months before Lori Loughlin finally has to face trial for her alleged role in the college bribery scheme, but the U.S. Attorney who is behind the ex-Fuller House star’s prosecution is certainly aiming to bring the hammer down.
‘If she is convicted, we would probably ask for a higher sentence for her than we did for Felicity Huffman,’ Andrew Lelling told Boston’s WCVB yesterday, noting the one month that prosecutors requested and the two weeks in prison that the Desperate Housewives star was given on September 13. “I can’t tell you what that would be,” the U.S Attorney for of Massachusetts added in the on-air Q&A.
It could be up to 40 years behind bars and over $1 million in fines if the full weight of the government’s case comes down on the once Hallmark Channel regular and her fashion designer husband Mossimo Giannulli. Unlike the not so veiled threat against Loughlin and Giannulli, Lelling used the same interview to praise the guilty pleading and “classy” Huffman someone who took responsibility “almost immediately,” “contrite” and not trying to “minimize her conduct.”
Take a look at the full Operation Varsity Blues interview with US Attorney Andrew Lelling on ABC’s Boston affiliate here:
Also, called the “least culpable defendant” by Lelling in the dozens arrested this spring by federal prosecutors and the FBI, Huffman “made a purported charitable contribution of $15,000 to participate in the college entrance exam cheating scheme on behalf of her eldest daughter,” according to the lengthy March 6 indictment. At her sentencing hearing last month, the American Crime actor was pitch perfect in saying in court that “I will deserve whatever punishment you give me.”
Not long after getting her 14 days jail time, one-year probation, 250 hours of community service and a fine of $30,000, Huffman put out a prepared statement that said she accepted “the court’s decision today without reservation,” The Oscar nominee added: I broke the law. I have admitted that and I pleaded guilty to this crime. There are no excuses or justifications for my actions. Period.”
That’s the polar opposite of where Loughlin and Giannulli seem to be coming from.
Having formally plead not guilty in mid-April after turning down a government deal, Loughlin and Giannulli are accused in the well-heeled suspects probe of paying “bribes totaling $500,000 in exchange for having their two daughters designated as recruits to the USC crew team — despite the fact that they did not participate in crew — thereby facilitating their admission to USC,” according to the 200-page indictment made public March 12.
Currently out on $1,000,000 bail bond, Loughlin and her spouse were hit hard with an additional money laundering charge on April 9 after they rejected the feds’ offer of reduced charges and sentencing recommendations.
“They seemed determined to take this to the mat, despite all the evidence that puts them squarely in a legal headlock and all the opportunities they’ve been given,” a law enforcement source familiar with the Loughlin and Giannulli case told Deadline. “With Huffman first being sentence and now several other parents who paid less in bribes than them, you’d think they would have finally acknowledged how deep they are in,” the source concluded.
Playing his cards a little closer to the chest, Lelling touched on a similar sentiment in his sit-down this weekend.
“If it is after trial, we would ask for something substantially higher,” declared the DOJ official of Loughlin and Giannulli’s risks of a taking the case to a jury. “If she resolved it before trial, something lower than that, Lelling asserted, clearly holding out hope of a deal.
Like Huffman, the still unapologetic Loughlin and her husband are among the most high-profile cases in the more than 30 parents indicted in the nationwide effort of wealthy families to get their children into top schools using underhanded methods and the services of ex-call center manager William Singer and his phony Key Worldwide Foundation.
Victorious in their seemingly short-sighted desire to share the same defense team in late August, Loughlin and Giannulli’s attorneys will next be back in federal court in Boston for a January 17, 2020 status conference.
Right now, the indicted duo is not expected nor required to be in attendance.
John Stamos on Lori Loughlin’s case: ‘Punishment is not equal to the crime’(8/29/19) John Stamos is, apparently, still Lori Loughlin‘s hand to hold onto.
The “Full House” star, 56, who has thus far largely refrained from weighing in on Loughlin’s legal troubles, has given the closest thing to a definitive statement on the matter to GQ in a new interview published Wednesday.
“Whatever happened, I’m pretty sure that the punishment is not equal to the crime, if there was a crime,” he said.
Loughlin, along with husband Mossimo Giannulli, is accused of paying mastermind William “Rick” Singer $500,000 to get their two daughters into USC by falsifying extracurricular activities. They have pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering and both face up to 40 years behind bars if convicted.
“I can’t figure it out,” Stamos added. “It doesn’t make sense. I talked to her the morning everything hit. I just can’t process it still.”
Stamos’ inability to figure “it” out extends to whether or not the corruption case will even proceed further than it has: “I want to wait until the trial happens, if it does, or whatever the result is, and then talk about it.”
The couple appeared in court on Tuesday.
Lori Loughlin Questioned Over Booze & Drug Use In College Bribery Scheme Hearing; Ex-‘Fuller House’ Star & Husband Allowed To Share Lawyers(8/27/19) Lori Loughlin and her husband Mossimo Giannulli appear determined to take their indictments in the college bribery scandal to trial – with the same lawyers and with a See No Evil defense.
To that end and facing more than 20 years each in prison if they are found guilty on charges of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, honest services fraud and money laundering, the ex-Fuller House star and the fashion designer were asked some hard questions Tuesday by a federal judge in Boston over their desire to share attorneys in their defense and stick with the firm of Latham & Watkins.
Eventually approving the couple’s wishes, Magistrate Judge Page Kelly wanted to know whether either of the duo had any prescription or illicit drug use, alcohol or psychological issues that could impair their respective ability to understand the risk they were taking sharing lawyers in such a high-stakes case, and the trial that clearly looks to be upcoming.
Both Loughlin and Giannulli replied that there are no such issues for them.
In fact, after once When Calls the Heart actor Loughlin and Giannulli snuck past the media camped out in front of the courthouse, most of the approximately 45-minute hearing was a series of yes and no answers from the couple.
Even after an almost incredulous Kelly warned that having an attorney who is working for “you and you alone” is one of the best ways to get a good defense, Loughlin and Giannulli signaled their plan to move ahead with the same legal team led by William Trach. At the end of the hearing in the federal courthouse, the couple inked a waiver to that effect on the possible conflicts of interest poised.
Having plead not guilty in mid-April and turning down a government deal, Loughlin and Giannulli are accused in the “Operation Varsity Blues” probe of paying “bribes totaling $500,000 in exchange for having their two daughters designated as recruits to the USC crew team — despite the fact that they did not participate in crew — thereby facilitating their admission to USC,” according to the 200-page indictment made public March 12.
Moving towards the next court date — an October 2 status conference — today’s hearing also revealed a glimpse of how Loughlin, Giannulli and their lawyers plan to mount a defense. In very Nixonian fashion, the two intend to force prosecutors at the U.S. District Attorney of Massachusetts’ office to question what Loughlin and Giannulli actually knew about what the scam’s “mastermind” Rick Singer, as one defense lawyer called the ex-call center manager today, was really up to for their daughters with his phony Key Worldwide Foundation.
In regards to the defense being put on by Latham & Watkins, prosecutors raised flags earlier when it emerged the well-heeled firm had done work for USC on matters unrelated to the scandal that has seen more than 30 well-heeled parents arrested for trying to get their kids into top-notch schools through cheating on exams and phony athletic credentials. In addition, another firm hired by Giannulli is also representing Davina Isackson, who was also indicted in the scandal and is now co-operating with the feds, and fellow co-defendant Peter Jan Sartorio. Lawyers for Boston’s Donnelly, Vonroy & Gelhaar assured Kelly today that they have put up a “robust firewall” to ensure there is no overlap.
The federal magistrate did not deliver a ruling on that potential conflict, but Kelly did say in court Tuesday that she was “inclined” to approve Giannulli’s use of Donnelly, Vonroy & Gelhaar.
Another Hollywood parent caught in “Operation Varsity Blues” will learn her fate on September 13. That is when Felicity Huffman has to appear in the same Boston courthouse for a sentencing hearing that will likely see the Emmy winner and Oscar nominee get less than four months of jail time, if any at all, under a plea deal worked out with prosecutors back in May.
The feds are also recommending to U.S. District Judge Indira Talwani that Huffman should have one year of supervised release and pay around $20,000 in fines. She was arrested March 12 for dropping $15,000 to Singer and his foundation to get her and William H. Macy’s eldest daughter into a top college surreptitiously with inflated test scores.
Although he appears in court filings and on taped conversations regarding the matter, Shameless actor Macy was never charged in the widespread case.
Lori Loughlin due back in court for hearing in college admissions scam(8/27/19) Actress Lori Loughlin and her fashion designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, are due in a Boston courtroom Tuesday for a hearing in connection with the college admissions bribery scandal.
They are accused of paying crooked college prep expert William “Rick” Singer $500,000 to help get their daughters — Olivia Jade, 19, and Isabella, 20 — into the University of Southern California as crew team recruits, even though neither is a rower.
The “Full House” actress and her hubby, who face up to 40 years behind bars, have pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering.
On Tuesday, a judge will question the couple about conflicts of interests regarding their attorneys, who have previously represented USC, according to CNN.
Both defendants have chosen to be jointly represented by attorneys from the firm Latham & Watkins.
Different attorneys from the firm have represented the university in an unrelated real estate case, but those representing the couple insist that this has not affected and will not affect their case.
The law firm has created an “ethical wall” between the cases, forbidding the attorneys working on the couple’s case from discussing it with those who worked on the USC case, CNN reported, citing court documents.
Loughlin and Giannulli are expected to be asked whether they believe any of these factors could result in conflicts of interest.
The couple is among the 50 parents who have been charged in a nationwide scheme to pay millions of dollars to secure spots for their children at top-ranked schools.
Their daughters have been continuing to attend USC as the probe into the scam continues.
At the time, Olivia boasted 1.3 million followers on Instagram and almost 2 million on YouTube but lost several sponsorship deals over the scandal.
Hollywood actress Felicity Huffman has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud for paying a proctor $15,000 to rig her daughter’s SAT scores.
She faces a recommended four months behind bar under her deal with prosecutors, plus a year of supervised release and a $20,000 fine. Her sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 21.
Lori Loughlin ‘obsessing over’ legal docs in college admissions case(8/23/19) Actress Lori Loughlin is obsessively poring over legal documents as she and her fashion designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, await trial in the college admissions scandal, according to a report Thursday.
“Lori is obsessing over every detail of the case,” a legal source told People.com. “She’s not working, she’s not doing anything. She’s just reading the files again and again.”
The 55-year-old “Fuller House” star and her family were instructed to stay away from the internet, the outlet reported.
“The family was told to remove their Google alerts and to stop searching their names because it’s not good for them to see what’s being said. But this is a full-time concern of hers,” the source said.
Loughlin and her Target T-shirt tycoon hubby are accused of paying $500,000 to college swindler William “Rick” Singer to help get their daughters, Olivia Jade and Isabella Rose Giannulli, into the University of Southern California as bogus crew recruits.
In April, they pleaded not guilty to charges of wire fraud and money laundering conspiracy.
The couple are among nearly 50 other parents, coaches and admissions counselors who were arrested in the scam, which saw Signer helping well-heeled parents get their kids into top schools by boosted entrance scores or passing them off as elite athletes.
Lori Loughlin reportedly thought college ‘bribe’ was like donating a library(8/22/19) Lori Loughlin doesn’t think she did anything wrong by allegedly paying a half-million dollars to get her daughters into USC — because she thinks the payoff was the same as making a donation, according to a report.
“She honestly didn’t think what she was doing was any different than donating money for a library or athletic field,” an insider told People magazine about the “Full House” star.
Loughlin, 55, and her fashion-designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, 56, are accused of paying $500,000 to college swindler William “Rick” Singer to help get daughters Olivia Jade and Isabella Rose into the University of Southern California.
The couple pleaded not guilty in April to charges of wire fraud and money laundering conspiracy in the case.
“She’s embarrassed and hurt, and she knows that her reputation has been ruined for life,” the source told People. “But she also believes the allegations against her aren’t true.”
Both Loughlin and her husband are set to appear Aug. 27 in court, where they’re expected to waive their rights to separate attorneys so they can put on a “united front,” the outlet reported.
“Lori is ready for this to be over,” the insider told the magazine. “They all are. At this point, it would be better to spend a few months in jail — because she’s been spending the last several months in her own prison.”
If convicted of the charges, the couple faces up to 40 years behind bars.
Singer has pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy, conspiracy to defraud the US, and obstruction of justice.
Hulu Picks Up All Seasons Of ‘Designing Women’; Will Launch Classic Sitcom On Women’s Equality Day August 26 – TCA(7/28/19) Hulu has acquired classic 90s sitcom Designing Women and will launch all seven seasons of the Linda Bloodworth-Thomason-created show on August 26, Women’s Equality Day.
The digital platform will air all 163 episodes of the series, which was produced by Bloodworth/Thomason Mozark Productions in association with Columbia Pictures Television for CBS, after striking a deal with Sony Pictures Television.
The series, which ran from September 29, 1986, until May 24, 1993, centers on the lives of four women and one man working together at an Atlanta interior design firm. Designing Women starred Dixie Carter (The Edge Of Night/The Doctors), Annie Potts, Jean Smart (Another World), Delta Burke, Meshach Taylor, Alice Ghostley (Passions), Julia Duffy (The Doctors/Passions/Love Of Life), Jan Hooks and Judith Ivey.
The pick up comes after a reboot of the show, written by original creator Bloodworth-Thomason, was developed last year by ABC.
Hulu’s head of originals Craig Erwich said that the show was “ahead of its time” when it launched. “We saw these four fabulous women balancing work and home lives, running businesses, handling setbacks and dating. But the show never shied away from tough topics like domestic abuse, homophobia, racism and women’s rights and its themes and storylines continue to have revelance today,” he added.
In terms of other holidays, Erwich claimed that The Act, starring Patricia Arquette and Joey King, was the “most watched original” on Mother’s Day. The anthology series follows Gypsy Blanchard (King), a girl trying to escape the toxic relationship she has with her overprotective mother, Dee Dee (Arquette).
Erwich said, “I guess after the disturbing scenes between Patricia Arquette and Joey King, we all feel better about our relationships with our moms.”
Marcia Cross claims anal cancer caused by same HPV strain as husband’s throat cancer(6/5/19) Marcia Cross, who bravely battled and defeated anal cancer less than a year ago, has revealed her disease was most likely the same strain of HPV that caused her husband’s throat cancer years earlier.
Cross, 57, is now in remission, and speaking out about the dangers of the STD. The former Desperate Housewives star appeared on CBS This Morning to promote early prevention against HPV and encourage people to get the HPV vaccine.
“I know there are people who are ashamed. You have cancer! You have to then also feel ashamed? Like you did something bad, you know, because it took up residence in your anus? I mean, come on, really. There’s enough on your plate.” Cross said.
“Even for me, it took a while. Anus, anus, anus. Ha. You just have to get used to it.”
According to the CDC, HPV causes more than 90% of anal cancers, and can spread from one person to another through sex or just by skin-to-skin contact. Back in 2009 her husband, Tom Mahoney, was diagnosed with throat cancer and underwent treatment. Little did the couple know the cancers would end up being related.
In September 2018, after a grueling battle of her own, including six weeks of radiation then two weeks of chemo, Cross finally revealed she was cancer-free.
“I am POST cancer. All good now. Hard journey, but I am HEALTHY, happy, and more present and grateful than ever,” she shared on Instagram. Thank you from the bottom of my ever expanding heart for all of your LOVE.”
Now well-educated on the disease and its dangers, Cross highly recommends early immunization. She said her daughters are up for their first shot at the end of the school year.
As for her own recovery, Cross told CBS she’s doing great.
“I’m feeling back to normal though it’s a new normal,” she said. “I don’t think I’ll ever take it for granted. I’m the girl who goes to the bathroom now and I go ‘Yes! It’s great what my body can do! I’m so grateful.’”
This Close Season 2(5/9/19) The dramedy This Close will return for Season 2 with two back-to-back episodes on Thursday, Sept. 12 at 9 pm PT/midnight ET on SundanceTV. The rest of the eight-episode season will unspool with double installments on Friday, Sept. 13, Thursday, Sept. 19 and Friday, Sept. 20. Guest stars include Marcia Cross (Desperate Housewives), Camryn Manheim (The Practice), Steven Weber (iZombie), Austin Nichols (The Walking Dead), Lisa Rinna (Real Housewives of Beverly Hills), Margaret Cho (Drop Dead Diva) and Millicent Simmonds (A Quiet Place).
Lori Loughlin May Score Not Guilty Verdict with Help of USC Crew Poster(5/8/19) Lori Loughlin may have gotten an assist in her defense -- good old-fashioned ignorance -- 'cause her daughters almost perfectly fit the mold with how women's rowing teams recruit.
An ad for the USC women's crew team popped up on campus over the weekend -- and we for sure thought it couldn't have been real ... seeing how tone-deaf it came off and the implications behind it, considering Olivia Jade and Isabella's "no experience."
Well ... turns out, the poster is real because we've been educated on how USC women's rowing teams work when it comes to recruiting walk-ons and the like.
A USC alum who was actually a coxswain at the university tells us women's rowing teams often recruit potential teammates who have zero experience in the sport -- which is kinda what Olivia Jade and Isabella were coming to the table with.
Typically, the way it works is that you already have to be a student to qualify for the team ... it's not for some random people on the street who want in at USC.
But, here's the thing ... in Lori's case, prosecutors have to prove criminal intent to seal a conviction. Sources connected with Lori's defense claim Lori didn't know the $500k payoff was shady, even if the plan was to pretend her daughters were crew-team ready. The poster would seem to help Lori and her husband, both of whom are charged with multiple felonies, because crew experience doesn't seem to be essential.
Prosecutors are trying to squeeze Lori and her husband to cop a plea, but our sources say their lawyers believe they have a real shot at getting a not guilty verdict if push comes to shove.
Lori Loughlin, Mossimo's College Bribery Scandal Defense -- We Didn't Know(4/24/19) Lori Loughlin and her husband had no idea college bribery mastermind Rick Singer was going to grease the palm of a USC coach to get their daughter into USC ... sources familiar with the case tell TMZ.
Our sources say ... lawyers for Lori and Mossimo Giannulli didn't take a plea early on because they believe they have a solid defense on several fronts. First, ringleader Rick Singer did not tell them how he would use the $500k to get their daughters into the school. Fact ... they were aware Rick Singer wanted pics of the girls on a rowing machine, but they say that doesn't mean they knew the end game.
It's true ... knowledge and intent are key elements to proving bribery, and we're told Lori and Mossimo's lawyers are making that a centerpiece of their defense ... their only intent is to generally get their daughters into USC by using a "facilitator" who got hundreds of other students into colleges.
One big problem ... according to the complaint, Giannulli -- not Loughlin -- sent at least $100k directly to the assistant athletic director.
And, we're told, they have a more basic defense ... colleges have horse-traded with relatives of prospective students for decades ... e.g., fund the wing of a school building and your child will miraculously get accepted. It's not only been tolerated by many schools ... it's aggressively encouraged by some of the schools, and parents know it.
A former USC assistant coach is expected to plead guilty to criminal charges in connection with the scandal. The former coach, Laura Janke, allegedly made it appear Olivia Jade was on the rowing team.
Lori Loughlin, hubby in new Examgate court gambit(4/24/19) Full House co-star Lori Loughlin wants the charges against her and her husband put on ice until they see what the prosecution has up its sleeve.
According to the New York Daily News, Loughlin — the leading lady in the college admissions scandal — along with her husband and 15 other defendants is asking a judge to suspend “substantive motions” until a June 3 status conference.
Loughlin and fashion designer hubby Mossimo Giannulli are accused of coughing up $500,000 in bribes to grease their two daughters into the University of Southern California (USC) — as members of the rowing crew. The daughters don’t row.
Other well-heeled parents allegedly did the same through bribes and fixing tests.
“At present, the defendants have not yet received any discovery in this case and have been told by the government that it is extremely voluminous,” the new filing in federal court in Boston states.
“Defendants would like an opportunity to review discovery in a meaningful way before filing of substantive motions in this case.”
It adds: “Litigating substantive motions in a piecemeal fashion and before defendants have an opportunity to become familiar with the government’s evidence could substantially prejudice the defendants’ ability to make proper legal arguments to contest the allegations.”
Loughlin also lives in terror that her two precious daughters may be forced to testify.
A pal told People that the actress is “feeling pressure” to take a deal.
“Lori will not do anything to put her daughters in harm’s way,” the friend said.
“She is like a mama bear when it comes to the girls, and she will do whatever she has to do to protect them from prosecution, especially malicious prosecution. Her top priority in all of this is to protect her daughters.”
Sources have also told the New York Post that the relationship between Loughlin and her husband is ice cold. She reportedly blames him for the fiasco.
Loughlin and Gianulli, along with 31 other parents, were arrested last month.
Desperate Housewives star Felicity Huffman and 12 other parents agreed to plead guilty earlier this month to cut their prison sentences.
Loughlin and her husband apparently thought federal prosecutors were “bluffing.”
“These parents are a catalogue of wealth and privilege,” U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling said last month. “All of them knowingly conspired.”
Lori Loughlin, husband Mossimo Giannulli plead not guilty in college scam(4/16/19) Actress Lori Loughlin, her fashion designer husband Mossimo Giannulli and other prominent parents are pleading not guilty in the college admissions bribery scam.
Loughlin and Giannulli said in court documents filed Monday they are waiving their right to appear in court for an arraignment and plead not guilty.
The couple and more than a dozen other parents were indicted last week on charges of mail fraud and money laundering conspiracy.
Loughlin and Giannulli are charged with paying US$500,000 in bribes to get their daughters admitted to the University of Southern California as crew recruits, even though neither is a rower.
They haven’t publicly addressed the allegations against them.
Several other indicted parents have also entered not guilty pleas.
Fellow actress Felicity Huffman and 12 other parents have agreed to plead guilty.
Lori Loughlin ‘concerned’ about how guilty plea would affect daughters(4/9/19) Lori Loughlin is “very concerned” about how a guilty plea in the college admissions scandal would affect her daughters’ reputations–and their feelings about their mom, according to a new report.
The public perception of Loughlin’s alleged scam is “nothing compared to what her daughters think of her. So that is something that has understandably made her less likely to enter a plea,” an unnamed source told People.
Loughlin and her designer husband Mossimo Giannulli are charged with paying $500,000 to get their daughters into the University of Southern California as fake recruits for the crew team. They were indicted this week in a federal Massachusetts court on conspiracy to commit money laundering and conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud.
Youngest daughter Olivia Jade Giannulli, a popular YouTube vlogger, is reportedly “barely speaking” to her parents in the wake of the scandal, according to previous reports.
She has been staying with friends in Los Angeles instead of her parents’ Bel Air mansion, the accounts say.
Loughlin is hesitant to take any plea deal that would result in prison time and has struggled to grasp the seriousness of the charges, according to the People source.
“It’s just taking some time for it to sink in that what she was allegedly doing could be considered illegal,” the source said. “To her, it wasn’t egregious behavior. Was it entitled and perhaps selfish? Perhaps. But she didn’t see it as being a legal violation.”
Loughlin “felt that she hadn’t done anything that any mom wouldn’t have done, if they had the means to do so,” the People source said. “So this wasn’t her being obstinate; this was her truly not understanding the seriousness of the allegations.”
Lori Loughlin Hit With Additional Money Laundering Charge In College Bribery Scheme(4/9/19) One day after Felicity Huffman entered a guilty plea in the elite schools admission case, Lori Loughlin has been seen a new money laundering charge added to her indictment.
The move by the U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts heightens the stakes for the actor and her fashion designer husband Mossimo Giannulli, both of whom are out on a $1,000,000 bail bond. Having appeared in federal court in Boston last week, the new charge indicates that the vice is tightening as the couple are not seeking a deal with the government, yet.
The UTA-repped Loughlin and her fashion designer husband Giannulli were part of a yearlong investigation that also snared American Crime star Huffman and more than 30 other parents. The couple are accused of paying “bribes totaling $500,000 in exchange for having their two daughters designated as recruits to the USC crew team — despite the fact that they did not participate in crew — thereby facilitating their admission to USC,” according to the 200-page indictment announced Tuesday.
The indictments made public on March 12 saw 50 people charged in the $25 million nationwide scam by William Singer and his phony Key Worldwide Foundation. The plan was to grease some palms to fast-track the kids of the wealthy including Huffman and Loughlin to top schools with fake athletic credentials or phony SAT scores.
Among the 33 wealthy parents arrested, Huffman and Loughlin are charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services fraud, according to the unsealed indictment. The elite schools caught up in the scandal are USC, UCLA, Yale Georgetown, Stanford, University of San Diego, the University of Texas at Austin and Wake Forest University.
That initial charge could see the actors and others facing a maximum of 20 years behind bars, if found guilty. Law enforcement sources last week told Deadline that they were determined to seek some prison time for the defendants, including the two actors.
The new money laundering conspiracy charge added to Loughlin’s docket in the second superseding indictment on Tuesday “provides for a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a fine of $500,000 or twice the value of the property involved in the money laundering,” says federal prosecutors.
Along with Loughlin and Giannulli, STX Entertainment and Evolution Media co-founder Bill McGlashan was also slapped with the damning new money laundering charge
Taken into custody on March 13 , the Aunt Becky of Full House and now Fuller House fame was arraigned before Judge Steve Kim in DTLA later that same day. Like her husband, Loughlin saw her travel restricted only within the continental U.S. ahead of the April 4 hearing in Boston.
Unlike Giannulli and Huffman, who was released on a $250,000 bail bond last month, Loughlin reluctantly was initially granted the ability to travel to Vancouver for work on the multiple Hallmark projects she had signed on for.
Fired from the Crown Media-owned outlet on March 14, that additional travel allowance now seems irrelevant in the big picture of her legal woes.
Lori Loughlin fans chant ‘Free Aunt Becky!’ outside courthouse(4/4/19) Two college students said they left campus on Wednesday to support Lori Loughlin outside the Boston federal courthouse — but not because they think she’s been wrongly accused in the college admissions scam.
Lianna Ferrara, 20, and Alyssa Stevens, 21, said happy childhood memories of watching Loughlin on the ABC family sitcom “Full House” led them to make paper masks of her face and chant “Free Aunt Becky!” while waiting for the actress to arrive.
“We don’t condone what she did,” Ferrara said.
Ferrara and Stevens both said they spent hours studying for the SAT and ACT exams to win admission to Boston’s Bentley University, where they’re juniors studying finance and marketing, respectively.
Stevens said the $500,000 scheme, in which Loughlin and her husband, designer Mossimo Giannulli, allegedly got their daughters fraudulently recruited as crew team prospects to USC, “took people’s places who worked for it, who deserved it.”
Ferrara noted that younger daughter Olivia Jade Giannulli “didn’t even want to go to college.”
“I’m graduating with a quarter-million dollars in debt,” fumed Stevens.
“Yes, it’s not OK what she did, but it’s how the world works. The wealthy get ahead.”
The pals also said they’d been “getting hate all day” for publicly supporting Loughlin.
They were among about 20 young women who gathered outside the courthouse and watched Loughlin’s hearing on a video monitor in an “overflow” room for people who couldn’t fit into the courtroom.
Afterward, they greeted her with screams of “We love you, Lori!” as she left with her husband.
One woman also held a sign saying, “Aunt Becky can you pay our tuition?”
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