Felicity Huffman Arrested & Lori Loughlin Charged In Alleged College Cheating Scam
Fuller House actress Lori Loughlin and Desperate Housewives veteran Felicity Huffman are among a group of more than 50 people who have been charged in a widespread college admissions bribery scandal. Huffman was arrested on Tuesday afternoon in Los Angeles, while Loughlin is expected to turn herself into police later today.
According to a release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Massachusetts, the federal court records which were unsealed Tuesday in Boston said that 50 people were named and have been indicted as part of the nationwide scheme.
“Dozens of individuals involved in a nationwide conspiracy that facilitated cheating on college entrance exams and the admission of students to elite universities as purported athletic recruits were arrested by federal agents in multiple states and charged in documents unsealed on March 12, 2019, in federal court in Boston,” the release said.
James J. Leonard Jr., an Atlantic City legal expert, told People that prison time could be a possibility, but not likely.
“This is a federal prosecution brought forth by the Department of Justice that carries with it potential life-altering consequences for those involved. The stakes could not be higher,” he told People. “A custodial term is always a possibility when you are charged with felonies. The question to ask is if it’s a probability, and in this case, I don’t see it as a probability with respect to the parents involved.”
In the indictment it states that Huffman allegedly gave $15,000 “to participate in the college entrance exam cheating scheme on behalf of her oldest daughter,” meanwhile Loughlin allegedly gave $500,000 to say her child was part of the rowing team when that was not true.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office and the FBI claimed in the indictment that the alleged scheme had helped students gain acceptance into elite schools by helping them cheat on college exams.
The document says that Loughlin and her husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, “agreed to pay bribes totaling $500,000 in exchange for having their two daughters designated as recruits to the USC crew team — despite the fact that they did not participate in crew — thereby facilitating their admission to USC.” Federal agents also obtained emails from Loughlin allegedly implicating her in the scam, according to the documents.
The documents also say that the FBI recorded phone calls between Loughlin and Huffman who talked about the scheme with a witness who was cooperating with authorities.