Paul ArchuletaGetty Images
Lori Loughlin did not take a plea deal following her arrest for allegedly participating in the college admissions cheating scandal. That decision may cost her more prison time in prison, TMZ and Page Six are reporting. On Tuesday the U.S. Attorney went to the Federal Grand Jury, which issued a formal indictment against Loughlin and her husband Mossimo Giannulli. The two are accused of allegedly paying $500,000 to make it appear that their daughters Olivia Jade and Isabella were rowing team recruits to guarantee their admission to USC.
The indictment has new charges added, including “conspiring to launder the bribes and other payment in furtherance of the fraud by funneling them through [Rick] Singer’s purported charity and his for-profit corporation,” the U.S. Attorney said, per TMZ. If Loughlin had taken a plea deal, she would have had a minimum 2-2.5 year jail sentence. Because she didn’t, she could serve much greater time behind bars. TMZ points out that the money laundering charge alone carries a maximum 20-year sentence.
Actress Felicity Huffman took a plea deal and released a statement yesterday, apologizing for what she did (she allegedly paid $15,000 to doctor her oldest daughter’s SAT score). Her deal reportedly has a four-month minimum jail sentence attached, although a judge will make the decision ultimately on how much time she and Loughlin will actually serve. In her statement, Huffman said:
I am pleading guilty to the charge brought against me by the United States Attorney’s Office.
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.
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.
My daughter knew absolutely nothing about my actions, and in my misguided and profoundly wrong way, I have betrayed her. This transgression toward her and the public I will carry for the rest of my life. My desire to help my daughter is no excuse to break the law or engage in dishonesty.