Actress Lori Loughlin and her fellow accused are asking a judge to dismiss charges related to the widespread college admissions scandal.
Fox News reports that lawyers for Loughlin, her designer husband Mossimo Giannulli, and an unspecified number of other parents accused of paying bribes to get their children admitted to prestigious colleges filed a motion this week urging a judge to drop the charges. Though the motion filed this week comes as the coronavirus pandemic has paralyzed much of the United States, forcing the closure of businesses and courthouses in some cities, the lawyers are citing misconduct on the part of prosecutors as the reason a judge should dismiss the charges.
The former “Full House” actress and her husband are accused of paying $500,000 to get their daughters admitted to the University of Southern California as crew team recruits, though neither daughter plays the sport.
Their defense lawyers reportedly argued that prosecutors, who appear to be based in Massachusetts, intimidated an informant into providing false information, and concealed potentially exculpatory evidence. The couple worked with so-called “admissions consultant” Rick Singer to get their daughters accepted into the college. Singer appears to have been a key witness in the investigation, and reportedly claimed that FBI agents told him to lie to parents in order to get them to make self-incriminating statements.
“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 lawyers wrote, according to the report.
“The extraordinary government misconduct presented in this case threatens grave harm to defendants and the integrity of this proceeding. That misconduct cannot be ignored.”
The U.S. attorney’s office in Boston did not respond to the news station’s request for comment.
For the latest true crime and justice news, subscribe to the ‘Crime Stories with Nancy Grace’ podcast.
[Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File]