Lori Loughlin & Mossimo Giannulli Didn’t Think They Were Making Bribe Payments To USC, Court Docs Claim

Photo: Joseph Prezioso/AFP/Getty Images.
Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli have filed new court documents asserting that newly-disclosed evidence further proves their innocence in the college admissions scandal
Loughlin and Giannulli are accused of paying $500,000 in bribes to get their daughters, Olivia Jade and Isabella Rose, into the University of Southern California. They paid the money to a nonprofit foundation run by William “Rick” Singer, a college admissions consultant who collaborated with a USC athletics official to get the girls into the school as crew recruits. Neither Olivia Jade nor Isabella Rose row crew.
On Friday, the couple’s lawyers filed documents in Boston claiming that their payments to USC were considered legitimate donations at the time, USA Today reports. Loughlin and Giannulli say that they didn’t realize they paid tens of thousands of dollars in illicit bribes. Instead, the filing says the couple “believed all of the payments they made would go to USC itself — for legitimate, university-approved purposes — or to other legitimate charitable causes.”
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And there’s more. The court filing says prosecutors failed to release key evidence that would help substantiate their claims. According to the couple’s attorneys, prosecutors did not disclose that Singer had said that “Giannulli and Loughlin thought their payment of $50,000 went directly to USC’s program.” The filing says that Singer’s statement is further proof that Loughlin and Giannulli were in the dark about how their money was given to USC officials as bribes to ensure their daughters’ admission to the university. The couple also claims they believed additional payments went to Singer’s nonprofit.
The couple is pleading not guilty to charges of conspiracy fraud, conspiracy to commit money laundering, and conspiracy to commit bribery. Fifteen parents, including Loughlin and Giannulli, are still fighting charges related to Operation Varsity Blues, which was made public last March.
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