TMZ: Lori Loughlin & Husband Mossimo Giannulli Wrote $50,000 Cheque Directly to USC

As reported by TMZ, a check for $50,000 Lori Loughlin and husband Mossimo Giannulli gave to Senior Associate Athletic Director Donna Heinel had the payee as the University of Southern California written on it.

After the couple pleaded not guilty in the college admissions scandal, Lori and Mossimo are expected to claim they were donating to USC.

Sources revealed to TMZ that former Athletic Director Pat Haden could prove a key witness after he described in a 2011 interview how fundraising for the university was like "feeding the beast."

Lori Loughlin at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel on February 28, 2019 in California | Photo: Getty Images

Lori Loughlin at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel on February 28, 2019 in California | Photo: Getty Images

THEY WERE ONLY DONATING

At the heart of the couple's defense will be the claim that they didn't bribe the former Senior Associate Athletic Director Donna Heinel, but that they were donating to the university.

According to the outlet, Mossimo did indeed send Heinel a check for $50,000. However, it could not have been a bribe on the grounds that the payee was USC. 

The couple are understood to get ready to contend that such donations are institutionally invited by universities and don't comprise bribery. 

Lori Laughlin and Mossimo Giannulli at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, NV. on April 26, 2002 | Photo: Getty Images

Lori Laughlin and Mossimo Giannulli at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, NV. on April 26, 2002 | Photo: Getty Images

PRISON EXPERT

It seems that Lori and Mossimo are determined to win at trial and will not enter a plea bargain. They could be imprisoned for as long as 60 years.

Recently, a source told Us Weekly that Lori has hired a "prison consultant on the advice of one of her lawyers" to mentor her on the dos and don'ts of imprisonment ahead of her trial.

An insider claimed that Lori said she thought the money they allegedly paid via Rick Singer's nonprofit organization, Key Worldwide Foundation (KWF), was going directly towards the university.

Olivia Jade Giannulli, Lori Loughlin, and Isabella Rose Giannulli at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel on February 28, 2019 in California | Photo: Getty Images

Olivia Jade Giannulli, Lori Loughlin, and Isabella Rose Giannulli at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel on February 28, 2019 in California | Photo: Getty Images

PREPARING FOR THE WORST

The source added that Mossimo was troubled about his better half's decision, but Lori is working to keep her prospects open. The source continued:

"Lori wants to be prepared for the worst outcome, but she also wants to demonstrate that she's taking this very, very seriously."

A month ago, an insider claimed that Lori said she thought the money they allegedly paid via Rick Singer's nonprofit organization, Key Worldwide Foundation (KWF), was going directly towards the university.

The source told People that Singer hoodwinked the actress and that just like parents have been doing for years, Lori was convinced she's donating.

On March 12, 2019, Lori and her husband of nearly 22 years, Mossimo, were arrested for allegedly paying a $500,000 bribe to get their daughters, Olivia and Bella, into the University of Southern California. The couple were each released on a bail bond of $1 million.

Following the charges, the Hallmark Channel cut ties with Lori, while Netflix chose to drop her from "Fuller House."

Meanwhile, her daughters have since dropped out of USC due to concerns about bullying from the scandal.

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