Lori Loughlin Enters Plea in College Admissions Cheating Scam

Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli are shown making a court appearance. (Credit: Shutterstock)

Full House actress Lori Loughlin and her fashion designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, pleaded not guilty Monday to charges in the college admissions cheating case.

Court documents obtained by CNN show the two waived their right to appear in federal court in Boston for an arraignment on fraud and money laundering charges.

Loughlin and Giannulli were arrested last month on a single charge of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud. Last week prosecutors added a charge of money laundering conspiracy against the two. Each of the two counts carries a penalty of up to 20 years in prison.

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Prosecutors allege the two paid $500,000 in bribes to get their daughters Isabella and Olivia into the University of Southern California as recruits for the school’s crew team, even though neither girl played the sport.

The criminal complaint says investigators obtained emails, bank records and recorded phone calls as evidence in the case.

Loughlin and Giannulli were among 50 people charged last month in the sweeping FBI investigation, including actress Felicity Huffman. The scam involved getting children into elite schools by rigging college entrance exams and bribing coaches.

Huffman and 12 other parents pleaded guilty last week to a charge of conspiracy to commit fraud. In exchange for the guilty plea, prosecutors agreed not to bring additional charges against the Emmy-winning actress.

Prosecutors said the former Desperate Housewives star paid California-based Edge College & Career Network $15,000 to get her older daughter unlimited time to take the SAT test. The payment was disguised to look like a tax-deductible donation.

On the day of her guilty plea, Huffman released a statement saying she accepts responsibility for her actions.

“I am in full acceptance of my guilt, and with deep regret and shame over what I have done, I accept full responsibility for my actions and will accept the consequences that stem from those actions,” she said. “I am ashamed of the pain I have caused my daughter, my family, my friends, my colleagues and the educational community.”