The move by the U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts heightens the stakes for the actor and her fashion designer husband Mossimo Giannulli, both of whom are out on a $1,000,000 bail bond. Having appeared in federal court in Boston last week, the new charge indicates that the vise is tightening as the couple are not seeking a deal with the government, yet.
The UTA-repped Loughlin and her fashion designer husband Giannulli were part of a yearlong investigation that also snared American Crime star Huffman and more than 30 other parents. The couple is accused of paying “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 200-page indictment announced Tuesday.
The indictments made public on March 12 saw 50 people charged in the $25 million nationwide scam by William Singer and his phony Key Worldwide Foundation. The plan was to grease some palms to fast-track the kids of the wealthy including Huffman and Loughlin to top schools with fake athletic credentials or phony SAT scores.
Among the 33 wealthy parents arrested, Huffman and Loughlin are charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services fraud, according to the unsealed indictment. The elite schools caught up in the scandal are USC, UCLA, Yale Georgetown, Stanford, University of San Diego, the University of Texas at Austin and Wake Forest University.
That initial charge could see the actors and others facing a maximum of 20 years behind bars, if found guilty. Law enforcement sources last week told Deadline that they were determined to seek some prison time for the defendants, including the two actors.
The new money laundering conspiracy charge added to Loughlin’s docket in the second superseding indictment on Tuesday “provides for a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a fine of $500,000 or twice the value of the property involved in the money laundering,” says federal prosecutors.
Along with Loughlin and Giannulli, STX Entertainment and Evolution Media co-founder Bill McGlashan was also slapped with the damning new money laundering charge
Taken into custody on March 13 , the Aunt Becky of Full House and now Fuller House fame was arraigned before Judge Steve Kim in DTLA later that same day. Like her husband, Loughlin saw her travel restricted only within the continental U.S. ahead of the April 4 hearing in Boston.
Unlike Giannulli and Huffman, who was released on a $250,000 bail bond last month, Loughlin reluctantly was initially granted the ability to travel to Vancouver for work on the multiple Hallmark projects she had signed on for.
Fired from the Crown Media-owned outlet on March 14, that additional travel allowance now seems irrelevant in the big picture of her legal woes