Lori Loughlin, 54, and Mossimo Giannulli are gearing up for a fight in court in the college bribery scandal.
The couple entered pleas of not guilty for all charges against them, including conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, honest services mail and wire fraud, and conspiracy to commit money laundering, ET confirms. The “Fuller House” star and her fashion designer husband did not appear in court in person, choosing to file via court documents submitted by their lawyers in a Boston federal court on Monday.
Both Loughlin and Giannulli face a minimum of four years and nine months in prison for allegedly paying $500,000 to an athletics coach to get their two daughters Olivia Jade and Isabella into the University of Southern California. Court documents revealed the couple tried to hide their bribes in the scam by calling them donations to fund programs for “disadvantaged youth.”
Loughlin reportedly turned down a plea deal on the charge of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and honest services mail and wire fraud that could result in a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, whichever is greater. The charge of conspiracy to commit money laundering 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.
The maximum prison time for the charges against them is 40 years each.
Dubbed Operation Varsity Blues, the investigation sees Loughlin and Giannulli face a stiffer sentence than actress Felicity Huffman, who pled guilty to charges and faces a four-month prison term. The discrepancy between the severity of sentencing is based on the amount paid in the bribe: Huffman shelled out $15,000 to rig her daughter’s SAT, while Loughlin and Giannulli are on the hook for $500,000 for their two daughters.