Lori Loughlin and her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, are going to trial over their roles in the college admissions scandal.
The couple, who rejected deals with federal prosecutors, are pleading not guilty to charges of mail fraud and money laundering conspiracy, according to court documents filed Monday and obtained by the Associated Press. They are just two of 50 people indicted in connection with Operation Varsity Blues. The Fuller House star’s peer, Felicity Huffman, pled guilty last week.
With their pleas, Loughlin and Giannulli are waiving their right to appear in court for an arraignment.
The pair, as well as a dozen other parents, were indicted last week. They were also slapped with the second charge: conspiring to launder the bribes they made — in the couple’s case, $500,000 to get their daughters Olivia Jade and Isabella Giannulli into the University of Southern California — through the scandal ringleader’s fake charity.
According to the AP, several other of the indicted parents have also entered not guilty pleas.
Loughlin and Giannulli face up to 40 years in prison each, but federal sentencing guidelines are closer to a five year sentence. Their daughters have not returned to school since news broke.
Loughlin’s attorney has not yet responded to our request for comment. So far the pair hasn’t publicly addressed the allegations.
Last week, Huffman — as well as 12 other parents — agreed to plead guilty. The Desperate Housewives alum, who paid $15,000 to fake her daughter’s SAT scores, issued a public apology. According to the reports, federal prosecutors were requiring some prison time for all the plea deals, so Huffman is expected to do between zero and six months, per federal guidelines.
Loughlin reportedly rejected the deal not realizing “how serious this is,” according to a report.
Loughlin has been criticized for seemingly not taking the indictment as seriously as others. She was smiling and waving to fans on the way into court earlier this month.
Experts told Yahoo that a prison sentence would be “traumatizing” to both actresses — especially Loughlin, who faces significantly more time. “While federal prisons” have the reputation for being like “a country club — hence the nickname ‘Club Fed’ — they are still grim, grimy and uncomfortable,” attorney Debra Bogaards of Bogaards Law in San Francisco told Yahoo. “It is not an easy ride.”
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