Full House star Lori Loughlin, her designer husband Mossimo Giannulli and 13 other parents accused of bribing their children’s way into college are petitioning a federal judge to throw their cases out.
Loughlin and the others claim that evidence shows that the FBI pushed Rick Singer, the alleged mastermind behind the plot, to extracting evidence from parents under false pretenses.
“For government agents to coerce an informant into lying on recorded calls to generate false inculpatory evidence against investigative targets — and to then knowingly prosecute those targets using that false evidence — is governmental malfeasance of the worst kind,” the defense said.
In notes on his phone, Singer wrote that FBI agents yelled at him and instructed him to lie to parents to say things in calls that could then be used against him.
“They continue to ask me to tell a fib and not restate what I told my clients as to where there money was going — to the program not the coach and that it was a donation and they want it to be a payment,” Singer wrote, according to the filing.
After seeing the notes in October of 2018, prosecutors then “buried” the evidence and told the defense it had provided all information. The defense also accused the feds of letting Singer delete thousands of texts on his phone and then mounting “aggressive (and highly successful) pressure campaign” to get parents to plead guilty.
Prosecutors have admitted in court that they should have handed evidence over earlier. They are scheduled to answer these latest charges in a filing due April 7th.
Loughlin and Giannulli have been accused of paying $500K to get their two daughters into University of Southern California by falsifying their athletic records. If convicted, they face decades behind bars. They have pleaded not guilty.