Lori Loughlin Was Released from Prison After Serving Two Month Sentence

Abigail Covington
·3-min read
Photo credit: Boston Globe - Getty Images
Photo credit: Boston Globe - Getty Images

From Esquire

Per the Associated Press, Full House actress Lori Loughlin was released from federal prison Monday after spending two months behind bars. Loughlin was serving her sentence for paying bribes to get her two daughters into college. According to Loughlin’s plea bargain, the Aunt Becky actress pled guilty to and was charged with conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud.

Loughlin’s husband, the fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, is currently serving his five-month sentence at a prison outside of Santa Barbara, California. Prosecutors told the Associated Press that Giannulli received a harsher sentence because he was “the more active participant in the scheme.” Back in the spring, the couple admitted to funnelling $500,000 in bribes through college admissions coach Rick Singer and his non-profit Key Worldwide Foundation to get their two daughters, Olivia Jade Giannulli, 20, and Isabella Rose Giannulli, 21, into the University of Southern California as crew recruits despite neither girl being a rower or a member of any crew team.

After being sentenced in August, Loughlin made her first statement regarding the scandal. "I made an awful decision. I went along with a plan to give my daughters an unfair advantage in the college admissions process. In doing so, I ignored my intuition and allowed myself to be swayed from my moral compass,” Loughlin reportedly said to the judge. "I thought I was acting out of love for my children, but in reality it only undermined and diminished my daughters’ abilities and accomplishments.”

Loughlin then continued and touched on the issue of privilege. "More broadly and more importantly, I now understand that my decision helped exacerbate existing inequalities in society, generally, and the higher education system, more specifically," she said. “I will do everything in my power to redeem myself and use this experience as a catalyst to do good and give back for the rest of my life."

Loughlin and Giannulli’s scheme was a part of a wider college admissions bribery scandal that federal prosecutors nicknamed “Operation Varsity Blues” because of the more than 30 prominent Hollywood parents that were a part of it, including Desperate Housewives star Felicity Huffman and her husband Wiliam H. Macy. The FBI’s investigation revealed the incredible lengths that some wealthy parents will go to get their children into prestigious colleges including faking athletic accomplishments and rigging test results.

For example, Felicity Huffman received a 14-day sentence for paying an admissions consultant $15,000 to have a proctor correct her daughter’s SAT answers. According to court documents, Huffman was officially charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud. Others who pled guilty have received jail-time sentences ranging from a few weeks to nine months.

As part of her plea bargain, Loughlin waived her right to appeal for an early release. In addition to a two-month prison sentence, Loughlin was also given two years of supervised release, 100 hours of community service, and a $150,000 fine.

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