Lies, admissions and a whole lotta money

Katherine Pecora

 

In recent weeks, the news has exploded with bombshell revelations from federal prosecutors.  Actors and prominent executives have had their worlds blown open and their finances aired all around the world. On April 15, federal prosecutors announced additional charges against actress Lori Loughlin. Loughlin is well known for her role in “Full House” as Aunt Becky, and appeared in numerous Hallmark movies. Loughlin and her husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, entered not guilty pleas. The charges came against Loughlin, Giannulli and 14 other wealthy parents. One notorious parent is Felicity Huffman, known for her role in the show “Desperate Housewives.” They all face one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud as well as honest-services mail and wire fraud, including one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. According to CNN: “Huffman was among 13 parents who agreed to plead guilty last week to a charge of conspiracy to commit fraud. A total of 33 parents, including the Desperate Housewives star, have been accused of using their wealth to cheat on standardized tests for their children and bribe college administrators and coaches who had clout when it came to admissions. Prosecutors’ decision to seek four to 10 months had nothing to do with Huffman’s public apology, the source said.”

According to the Justice Department’s indictment, Giannulli and Loughlin made payments in 2016 and 2017 to the USC Associate Athletic Director Donna Heinel and a fraudulent business called the Key Worldwide Foundation which was operated by William “Rick” Singer. The indictment from the Justice Department states: “On or about November 29, 2018, Singer called Loughlin from Boston, Massachusetts. During the call, Singer said, in sum and substance, that [Key Worldwide Foundation] was being audited by the IRS, which was asking about the two payments of $200,000 by the Giannullis. Singer added: “So I just want to make sure that you know that, one, that you’re probably going to get a call and that I have not told them anything about the girls going through the side door, through crew, even though they didn’t do crew to get into USC. So I—that is—all I told them was that you guys made a donation to our foundation to help underserved kids.” Loughlin replied, ‘Um-hmm.’”

The couple’s younger daughter, Olivia Jade Giannulli, is a beauty vlogger, famous for her videos and her recent collaboration with Sephora. Since the scandal broke, her collection has been pulled.

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