Loughlin, Giannulli plead in college scam but await fate

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FILE – In this Aug. 27, 2019, file photo, Lori Loughlin departs federal court with her husband, clothing designer Mossimo Giannulli, left, in Boston, after a hearing in a nationwide college admissions bribery scandal. Loughlin and Giannulli have agreed to plead guilty in a video arraignment scheduled for Friday, May 22, 2020, to charges of trying to secure the fraudulent admission of their two children to the University of Southern California as purported athletic recruits. (AP Photo/Philip Marcelo, File)

(AP) – “Full House” star Lori Loughlin and her fashion designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, pleaded guilty Friday to paying $500,000 to get their two daughters into the University of Southern California as part of a college admissions bribery scheme, but a judge has not decided whether he’ll accept their plea deals with prosecutors.

Under the proposed deals, Loughlin, 55, hopes to spend two months in prison and Giannulli, 56, is seeking to serve five months. But U.S. District Judge Nathaniel Gorton said Friday at the famous couple’s video hearing that he will decide whether to accept or reject the plea deal after further consideration of the presentencing report.

The famous couple, who appeared on separate video screens, both sitting with a lawyer, made no comments during the hearing other than to answer the judge’s questions.

They were among dozens of wealthy parents, athletic coaches and others charged last year in the bribery scheme. The parents paid hefty bribes to get their kids into elite universities with bogus test scores or fake athletic credentials, authorities said.

The couple had been scheduled to go to trial in October on charges that they got their two daughters into USC as crew recruits, even though neither girl was a rower. Prosecutors say they funneled money through a sham charity operated by college admissions consultant Rick Singer, who has pleaded guilty to orchestrating the scheme.

Loughlin has also agreed to pay a $150,000 fine and perform 100 hours of community service. Giannulli has agreed to pay a $250,000 fine and perform 250 hours of community service.

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