A third member of the Loughlin family - the most familiar faces in the recent college admissions scam - is now facing a criminal investigation, according to The Daily Mail. A daughter of Full House star Lori Loughlin, who recently plead not guilty to charges in "the largest ever college admissions scandal" is now the focus of a Department of Justice probe as to her involvement in the case.
Multiple sources have said that the actress’ daughter was on the receiving end of a letter from federal prosecutors in Massachusetts earlier this month regarding the investigation. The letter said that Loughlin's daughter was the subject of an investigation that could result in criminal charges.
One person who saw the letter said: "It is a not-so-veiled threat. [The US Attorney's Office for the District of Massachusetts] is making it pretty clear that they have evidence that very strongly suggests she knew of the illegal plot."
The tone of the letter was described as "ominous". A source said that these letters are an indication that prosecutors are working to obtain evidence and possibly pursue additional charges and defendants.
Another source interpreted the letter as clear telegraphing of more charges to come: "It is clear that some students are going to be charged."
Sources said that five additional people whose children received letters all refused a plea deal and filed a plea of not guilty, as Loughlin and her husband have done. Loughlin's daughters, as part of the scam, pretended they had previously been on crew teams in order to gain preferential treatment as potential athletic recruits. To sell that idea, they posed for photos on ergometers, offering the suggestion that they were aware and willing participants in their parents' plan. Loughlin daughter Olivia also reportedly had scam ringleader William Rick Singer's team fill out her college applications for her.
According to the complaint:
'On or about December 12, 2017, Loughlin e-mailed [Singer], copying Giannulli and their younger daughter [Olivia], to request guidance on how to complete the formal USC application, in the wake of her daughter’s provisional acceptance as a recruited athlete,' states the complaint.
'Loughlin wrote: "[Our younger daughter] has not submitted all her colleges [sic] apps and is confused on how to do so. I want to make sure she gets those in as I don’t want to call any attention to [her] with our little friend at [her high school]. Can you tell us how to proceed?"'
In response, Singer wrote an email 'directing an employee to submit the applications on behalf of the Giannullis’ younger daughter [Olivia].
Loughlin and Giannulli 'agreed to pay bribes totaling $500,000 in exchange for having their two daughters designated as recruits to the USC crew team - despite the fact that they did not participate in crew - thereby facilitating their admission to USC,' according to the documents.
Perhaps if you're too "confused" on how to fill out a college application, that should automatically discredit you from admission - just a thought.
Regardless, this is the first report of a student potentially being investigated in the scandal that has already seen 16 parents face indictments. Previously it had been reported that Loughlin was worried about what a guilty plea would do to her daughters.
“She is very concerned about what a guilty plea would do to her daughters, who may not have grasped everything that was going on. Yes, she can think about the public perception of her, but that’s nothing compared to what her daughters think of her. So that is something that has understandably made her less likely to enter a plea,” a source told People several days ago.
Just days ago, we reported that the Harvard test taking whiz who was central to the scheme, Mark Riddell, had cut a deal with prosecutors and was facing 33 to 41 months in prison. 14 other parents were also recently indicted in the scandal last week. Two weeks ago, we noted that parents charged in the scheme were seeking out "prison life consultants" to find out what life would be like in the big house. Perhaps Loughlin's daughters can now benefit from the same consultant.
We have been following the admissions scandal at length. As part of our coverage, we detailed how financial speaking gigs and elite high schools helped facilitate the scam for years.
We've also covered the fallout from the scandal, like when UCLA's Men's Soccer Coach and former U.S. Men's national team player Jorge Salcedo recently resigned from his position at the university as a result of taking bribes. We also wrote about how students were being encouraged to fake learning disabilities in order to cheat on college entrance exams.