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Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli may have turned down this deal in college admissions scandal, report says

The Department of Justice announced back on Friday, June 21 that California man Toby MacFarlane pleaded guilty. His potential sentence may offer a clue to Loughlin's plea deal.

Actress Lori Loughlin, right, poses with her daughter Olivia Jade Giannulli on Feb. 28, 2019, at "An Unforgettable Evening" in Beverly Hills, California.
Actress Lori Loughlin, right, poses with her daughter Olivia Jade Giannulli on Feb. 28, 2019, at "An Unforgettable Evening" in Beverly Hills, California.
Chris Pizzello, Invision/Associated Press

SALT LAKE CITY — Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli pleaded not guilty in the college admissions scandal, and we may finally have some details about the plea deal they turned down.

The Department of Justice announced on Friday, June 21, that California man Toby MacFarlane pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud, which are the same charges that Loughlin and Giannulli are facing.

MacFarlane's plea agreement involved 15 months in prison, a year of supervised release, a $95,000 penalty and an unspecified amount of restitution for his crimes, according to my report for the Deseret News.

MacFarlane’s plea might give us an idea of the sort of plea deal that Loughlin and Giannulli turned down.

“The MacFarlane plea is relevant to Loughlin and Giannulli because of the level of the offense — that is, how much money was allegedly involved. Plus, the details of the allegations were quite similar,” according to Law and Crime.

MacFarlane reportedly paid $450,000 in bribes so his children would be athletic recruits for the University of Southern California, according to USA Today.

Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli paid $500,000 to make sure their children, Olivia Jade and Isabella Giannulli, were team crew recruits.

“As the government noted in the MacFarlane case, conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail could (very theoretically) have resulted in a maximum of 20 years in prison. The same was initially true for Loughlin and Giannulli. As MacFarlane’s deal shows, serious potential peril was reduced to 15 months through acceptance of responsibility,” according to Law and Crime.

Loughlin and Giannulli face a potential sentence of 40 years, according to my reporting for the Deseret News.

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