Lori Loughlin sentenced to two months in college admissions scandal

“Full House” actress Lori Loughlin was sentenced to two months in prison Friday for her role in the college admissions scandal. In May, Loughlin, along with her husband Mossimo Giannulli pleaded guilty to paying $500,000 in a scheme to admit both of their daughters to USC as athletic recruits.

Hours before Loughlin’s sentencing, Giannulli, a fashion designer, was sentenced to five months in prison for his role in what a U.S. district court judge called “breathtaking fraud.” Though the couple had initially pleaded not guilty, the two accused parents decided to plead guilty in May, after receiving additional charges that carried a maximum sentence of 20 years.

Loughlin pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud after an FBI investigation in March 2019 uncovered a widespread scheme where wealthy executives and celebrities paid thousands of dollars to have their children admitted to elite colleges across the country. Prosecutors allege that Giannulli took a more active and involved role in the scheme, resulting in longer jail time. In addition to serving five months, he must also complete 250 hours of community service and pay a $250,000 fine. He reports to prison Nov. 19.

In May, Giannulli and Loughlin admitted to conspiring with college admissions scandal mastermind and real estate mogul William “Rick” Singer to have their daughters, Isabella Giannulli and YouTube personality Olivia Jade, admitted to USC. For months, the couple denied their role in the scheme, saying they thought the bribe money they paid to former USC athletic official Donna Heinel had been legitimate donations to the University.

In addition to paying $500,000, the FBI investigation revealed that the couple also doctored images and misled high school counselors in an effort to portray their daughters as athletic recruits. Both daughters no longer attend USC.

Though more than 10 universities and 30 parents were implicated in Operation Varsity Blues, USC was at the forefront of the scandal and national outrage, having admitted the highest number of students through bribes and having some of the highest profile celebrity cases. Sentencing for parents involved in the scheme ranged from weeks to months. 

Loughlin and Giannulli were the last parents sentenced in the monthslong saga.