Full House star Lori Loughlin’s involvement in the national college admissions scandal may not have consisted of just her alleged bribery to get her daughters into the University of Southern California… she may have also agreed to straight-up lie to the IRS.
Page Six reports that a phone conversation Loughlin had with the scheme’s alleged ringleader William “Rick” Singer was secretly recorded by, presumably, federal investigators on Nov. 29, 2018. In the call, Singer reportedly told Loughlin that the Internal Revenue Service was auditing his charity Key Worldwide Foundation (KWF), the organization through which Singer allegedly funneled college admissions bribes. He told Loughlin, “I told Moss [Loughlin’s husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli] already and I wanted to make sure that you knew, as well, if they happened to call you, is that nothing has been said about the girls, your donations helping the girls get into USC to do … the crew even though they didn’t do crew.”
Loughlin reportedly responded, “So we — so we just — so we just have to say we made a donation to your foundation and that’s it, end of story.” Singer replied, “That is correct.”
As Nicki Swift previously reported, Loughlin has been accused of “conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud” for allegedly paying $500,000 with her husband to Singer to get their two daughters, Isabella, and Olivia Jade, into USC. According to reports, Singer allegedly helped set up fake sports profiles for the girls, getting them labeled as recruits for the college’s crew team, despite them reportedly not having participated in the sport in high school.
Loughlin and her husband are among dozens who stand accused of being involved in the country-wide scam, along with Desperate Housewives star Felicity Huffman.
Loughlin, who was released from police custody on $1 million bonds after her arrest, was originally scheduled to appear in court on March 29, but her hearing was reportedly rescheduled for April 3.
At the time of this writing, neither Loughlin nor her daughters have publicly spoken out about the charges. While it was suggested that Isabella and Olivia Jade had dropped out of USC following the allegations, NBC News reported that the girls are still enrolled as students at the school. “We have confirmed that both Olivia Giannulli and Isabella Giannulli still are enrolled,” Ron Mackovich, USC’s media relations specialist, told the news network (via Today). He added, “USC is conducting a case-by-case review for current students and graduates that may be connected to the scheme alleged by the government and will make informed decisions as those reviews are completed.”
According to Entertainment Tonight, the girls are having a difficult time following their parents’ arrests. An insider told ET, “Bella and Olivia are suffering in their own ways from the fallout of their parents’ decisions.”
The source shared, “Bella and Olivia have a very tightknit group of friends who have been there to support them,” adding, “They’ve needed that support because they’re being attacked at every turn.”
ET‘s insider also noted that Isabella would have “loved” to finish her studies at USC, while sister Olivia Jade is reportedly upset that her parents “pushed” her to go to college when she would’ve preferred to focus on her YouTube career. Now, with the scandal making headlines and companies dropping her from sponsorships, Olivia Jade “feels [her parents] ruined everything” that she worked for.
While many celebrities have criticized Loughlin for her alleged involvement in the college admissions scam, a few others appear to support her through her legal woes. During the Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards on March 23, Fuller House actresses Andrea Barber, Candace Cameron Bure, and Jodie Sweetin, along with a few other co-stars, accepted the award for a favorite funny TV show, and they appeared to subtly comment on Loughlin’s ongoing scandal.
“Thank you for voting Fuller House as your favorite funny TV show. You have been laughing alongside our family for four seasons and this family has a lot of heart,” Barber told the crowd.
“And where there’s a lot of heart, there’s a lot of love,” Cameron Bure added, noting that “a loving family sticks together no matter what.” She continued, “They stick together through the hard times. They support each other, they encourage one another, they pray for each other, and they stand by their side no matter how tough it gets.”
Sounds like, even if her own daughters — and the country — are mad at her, Loughlin can still find love and support from her Fuller House family.