Federal prosecutors have handed over millions of pages of evidence to lawyers for Hollywood star Lori Loughlin and 14 other defendants charged for their alleged roles in the college admissions cheating scandal, which exploded into the headlines last March, outraged the public, and sparked heated debates about the role of cash in higher education, legal filings show.
“Discovery is ongoing and consists of millions of pages of documents and audio files,” said a docket entry in the case filed after a Friday status conference in US District Court in Boston. “The government is still providing discovery. Several defendants who are presently negotiating discovery requests with the government may file motions to compel.”
Loughlin and her husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, are charged with multiple felonies for allegedly agreeing to pay bribes totaling $500,000 to get their daughters into USC as fake crew recruits.
The daughters no longer attend the school, USC said in October.
Loughlin and Giannulli are among the many parents charged in the admissions scandal, in which celebrities, captains of industry, and other wealthy individuals allegedly cut fat checks to get their children falsely designated as athletic recruits at selective schools, or to facilitate cheating on the kids’ SAT and ACT exams when they needed a boost to meet entry requirements.
Loughlin and Giannulli have pleaded not guilty to all charges. A trial date hasn’t been set.
“Court reminds the parties that by January 29, 2020, the government will file a memorandum to assist Judge [Nathaniel M.] Gorton in setting trial dates, and defendants shall file responses by February 12, 2020,” said the Friday legal filing.
Loughlin is not the only star to find herself in the crosshairs of US Attorney Andrew E. Lelling’s office.
Felicity Huffman, the “Desperate Housewives” star who also floored critics with her gutsy performance in the film “Transamerica,” served less than two weeks in prison for paying a $15,000 bribe to boost her daughter’s SAT score.
Huffman — whose husband, William H. Macy, stars on the hit Showtime series “Shameless” — also paid a $30,000 fine and was ordered to perform 250 hours of community service.