Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin both appeared in Boston federal court on Wednesday, along with eleven other defendants, for charges arising from their alleged involvement in a college admissions scandal. Neither of them entered plea deals.
Huffman arrived first, and quietly entered the building with her attorney. Loughlin was all smiles, however, and shook hands and waved at fans outside the courthouse. Some bystanders yelled things like “We love you,” and “Lori, pay for my tuition!”
These two actresses were among 50 people arrested, including nine coaches and more than thirty parents, who have been accused of using their wealth to cheat the collegiate system and get their children admitted into sought-after universities.
Authorities have dubbed it Operation Varsity Blues, and this is the largest college admissions scheme to ever be prosecuted. Allegedly, parents paid William “Rick” Singer, the founder of a college prep business in Newport Beach, California, to get their children into elite universities. Singer has already pleaded guilty to multiple felony charges in the case, and has admitted to taking millions from these wealthy parents.
Parents allegedly paid him to have someone take the SATs or ACTs for their children. Prosecutors are also saying that Singer paid around $25 million in bribes to coaches and administrators so that they would pretend his clients’ children were athletic recruits. This would ensure they were guaranteed college admission.
Huffman is accused of paying Singer $15,000, disguised as a charitable payment, to have someone take her oldest daughter’s SAT test. She is out on a $250,000 bond. Her husband was not indicted.
Loughlin and her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, stand accused of paying half a million dollars to Singer in exchange for having their two daughters designated as recruits to a university crew team, although neither ever participated in the sport. Both Loughlin and Giannulli are out on separate bonds for $1 million.
Laughlin’s daughter, Olivia Jade, was in the Bahamas aboard the university’s Board of Trustees Chairman Rick Caruso’s private yacht when her parents were originally indicted for their involvement in the scheme.
She has now lost brand deals with TRESemmé and Sephora. According to sources, she feels she is the victim, and has been staying with her boyfriend and not talking to her parents.