Lori Loughlin and husband Mossimo Giannulli pleaded not guilty to charges against them in the college admission cheating scandal. According to a source close to the couple, their plea was the “only choice” they have got after rejecting a plea deal from prosecutors.
According to the source, Lori failed to realize how serious the charges were at the time she was offered a deal from prosecutors.
“More than that, I think she and her lawyers underestimated how motivated the prosecution was. So she didn’t plead, and then they hit her with another charge. Now she’s willing to negotiate, but the prosecution says that the deal is off the table. So the only choice they’ve got is to plead not guilty. That’s all they can do.”
Lori and her fashion designer husband pleaded not guilty to mail fraud and money laundering conspiracy. The couple will face up to 20 years in prison for each charge if convicted.
The couple is amongst 50 people who were charged in the college admission scandal including “The Desperate Housewives” actress Felicity Huffman. The parents along with coaches and admissions counselors were accused of falsifying SAT scores and falsely mentioning the athletic skills of their children during admission.
Meanwhile, Felicity Huffman has agreed to plead guilty of conspiracy to commit mail fraud.
“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.”
Huffman, along with a dozen other parents and one coach, agreed to plead guilty, unlike Lori and her husband. She has agreed to paying $15, 000 to a fake charity associated with Rick Singer so that her daughter could cheat on the SATs. The singer helped wealthy parents by letting their children cheat on the standardized tests through his college prep business.
Because she agreed to plead guilty, federal prosecutors said they will recommend incarceration at the “low end” of the sentencing range along with a $20, 000 fine and 12 months of supervised release.
Felicity also apologized to the students and their parents who work hard to get into college in a statement.
"I am ashamed of the pain I have caused my daughter, my family, my friends, my colleagues and the educational community. I want to apologize to them and, especially, I want to apologize to the students who work hard every day to get into college, and to their parents who make tremendous sacrifices to support their children and do so honestly," she wrote.
Lori’s family’s name has been stained after the incident. It would be great if she could follow the footsteps of Felicity and take the path of honesty to save whatever respect she has left in society.