After over a year of making headlines for their involvement in the college admissions scandal that rocked a nation, the Loughlin-Giannulli family is finally approaching something akin to closure. On Friday, August 21, Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli will plead guilty to charges of conspiracy and fraud, and receive their sentence — for which federal prosecutors have now released their recommendation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Justin O’Connell wrote a sentencing memo suggesting Giannulli should receive a lengthier prison term than wife Loughlin, and disclosing new evidence that the couple not only knowingly committed these crimes, but involved their daughters Olivia Jade and Isabella Rose in the scheme. Olivia was reportedly told to keep information from her high school’s college counselor, who they feared might interfere with their plan to secure her USC admissions. And when the counselor did in fact attempt to interfere, Giannulli made a surprise visit to the school that almost ruined the whole operation.
O’Connell sent this memo to the judge on Monday, four days before the couple’s scheduled (virtual) sentencing. “The crime Giannulli and Loughlin committed was serious. Over the course of two years, they engaged twice in Singer’s fraudulent scheme,” he wrote, per The Los Angeles Times. “They involved both their daughters in the fraud, directing them to pose in staged photographs for use in fake athletic profiles and instructing one daughter how to conceal the scheme from her high school counselor.”
The mention of fake athletic profiles refers to the photos of Oliva and Isabella posing on rower machines allegedly posed and taken by Giannulli, in order to pass off his daughters as members of the crew team (they were not). As to the high school counselor, O’Connell is referring to a conversation Olivia allegedly had with her parents before meeting with this counselor, the details of which appear quite revealing.
Per the memo, when Olivia asked whether she should report her first choice school as USC, Loughlin allegedly answered: “Yes … But it might be a flag for the weasel to meddle.” It’s also noted that father Giannulli referred to the counselor as a “nosey bastard,” and Loughlin further cautioned her daughter: “don’t say too much to that man.”
When this same counselor later noticed that the Giannulli girls had been tagged as athletic recruits, he noted the error — and earned himself a face-to-face with Mossimo, who came to the school and asked him “why [he] was trying to ruin or get in the way of their opportunities.” The counselor’s notes have previously been filed in court by the prosecution.
This conversation between Olivia and her parents certainly implies that the daughters weren’t just aware of fraudulent application materials, like those rowing photos, but played an active role in concealing information about their admissions plans. As O’Connell notes, this would mean the couple knowingly involved their daughters in illegal activity and made them complicit. And while the daughters have not themselves been charged, the prosecution feels that their parents should be further held accountable for involving their daughters in carrying this out.
Giannulli and Loughlin expect to find out their prison sentences and any associated fees, community service hours, or probation on Friday.
Click here to see inside Lori Loughlin’s new $9.5 million Hidden Hills family home.