Actresss Felicity Huffman (Desperate Housewives, American Crime Story), and Lori Loughlin (Fuller House) have been charged in the US along with 50 other people in a $25m scheme to help wealthy Americans buy their children’s way into elite universities.
Court documents show that both Huffman and Loughlin have been charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud. According to an FBI affidavit, the scheme involved getting students admitted into colleges such as Georgetown, UCLA, USC, Stanford, University of San Diego, University of Texas at Austin, Wake Forest and Yale.
“Beginning in or about 2011, and continuing through the present, the defendants—principally individuals whose high-school aged children were applying to college—conspired with others to use bribery and other forms of fraud to facilitate their children’s admission to colleges and universities in the District of Massachusetts and elsewhere, including Yale University, Stanford University, the University of Texas, the University of Southern California, and the University of California – Los Angeles, among others,” the affidavit states.
The document goes on to state that Huffman her spouse, William H. Macy, made a purported charitable contribution of $US15,000 to participate in the scheme on behalf of her eldest daughter. She “later made arrangements to pursue the scheme a second time, for her younger daughter, before deciding not to do so,” the document reads.
Huffman appeared in a Los Angeles federal courtroom in downtown Los Angeles today and the judge set her bond for $250,000.
Her husband, actor William H Macy (Shameless), showed up at court ahead of his wife’s appearance. Macy, was not charged in the case or named in the FBI affidavit. However, the affidavit does state that “Huffman and her spouse agreed to the plan.”
Loughlin has not yet been arrested. She is currently out of the US but has been contact by federal authorities to come back and turn herself in. However, her husband Mossimo Giannulli was arrested without incident. He is expected to appear today in court.
Alleged mastermind, William “Rick” Singer, 58, has also been charged with racketeering conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy and obstruction of justice.