Lori Loughlin Faces New Charges in College Cheating Scandal
Actress Lori Loughlin's legal troubles continue to mount.
On Tuesday, Loughlin and her husband Mossimo Giannulli were among nearly a dozen parents facing new bribery charges stemming from their alleged involvement the college cheating scandal.
A grand jury in the District of Massachusetts brought the new charges in the third superseding indictment, accusing the 11 parents of conspiring to commit federal program bribery by paying off employees of USC to facilitate their children's admission.
In exchange for the bribes, USC employees allegedly categorized the defendants' children as athletic recruits — with little or no consideration of their athletic abilities — or as members of other favored admissions categories.
United States attorney for the District of Massachusetts Andrew Lelling said that the new charges “are the result of ongoing investigation in the nationwide college admissions case."
He added, “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.”
Before the charges were announced, Lelling recently weighed in on Loughlin's case during an interview with “On the Record.” He said, “If she's convicted... we would probably ask for a higher sentence for her than we did for Felicity Huffman. I can't tell you exactly what that would be. The longer the case goes, let's say she goes through to trial, if it is after trial, certainly, we would ask for something substantially higher. If she resolved it before trial, something lower than that."
Loughlin and Giannulli have pleaded not guilty to two charges: conspiracy to commit money laundering; and conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and honest services mail and wire fraud. They were hit with one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and honest services mail and wire fraud, and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering in a second superseding indictment when they didn't reach a plea deal.
Their daughters Olivia Jade and Isabella Rose are no longer enrolled at USC.
“Extra's” Billy Bush recently shut down rumors that Lori and Mossimo's marriage was on the rocks amid the scandal. Watch!