Lori Loughlin Hit With More Charges In Operation Varsity Blues College Admission Scandal
Fuller House star Lori Loughlin was already facing charges of mail fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering because of her involvement in the Operation Varsity Blues scandal. But now, Loughlin and her husband - plus nine other parents - have been hit with a third set of charges - conspiracy to commit federal program bribery.
According to Entertainment Weekly , the office of Andrew E. Lelling, the U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts announced on Tuesday that he filed additional charges against Loughlin, her husband Mossimo Giannulli, and the other parents - Gamal Abdelaziz, Diane Blake, Todd Blake, Elisabeth Kimmell, William McGlashan Jr., Marci Palatella, John Wilson, Homayoun Zadeh, and Robert Zangrillo.
Desperate Housewives star Felicity Huffman was only involved in the first indictment for mail fraud, and she has already pled guilty and is serving her 14-day prison sentence.
Loughlin, on the other hand, has been indicted for all three charges and she has pled not guilty, which means she is facing a much harsher sentence if convicted. The 55-year-old allegedly paid $500,000 to bribe employees at the University of Southern California so they would admit her two daughters Olivia Jade Giannulli and Isabella Rose Giannulli.
Court documents show that Loughlin and Giannulli allegedly paid William Rick Singer and his Key Worldwide Foundation $400,000 to make it appear that Olive Jade and Isabella Rose were crew recruits. Then, the couple dished out $100,000 to Donna Heinel, the senior associate athletic director at USC, to make sure the girls got in as members of the crew team, even though neither of them are rowers.
Lelling said in his statement that the new conspiracy to commit federal program bribery charge was the result of an ongoing investigation into the nationwide college admission case.
“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,” said Lelling.
If convicted, Loughlin and Giannulli - and everyone else indicted on these charges - will be facing a maximum of 10 years in prison, plus three years supervised release and a $250,000 fine.
Lori Loughlin’s next court date is unknown. And, the University of Southern California just released a statement confirming that both Olivia Jade and Isabella Rose are no longer enrolled.