Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli Felt Going to Trial Would Be ‘Reckless’

Fear factor. Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli’s decision to alter their pleas in the college admissions scandal did not come easy — after all, they made the move more than a year after being arrested — but ultimately, they realized the case against them was too strong.

“Lori and Mossimo felt going to trial would just be reckless,” a source tells Us Weekly exclusively, noting that the couple also worried about the potential of their daughters, Bella, 21, and Olivia Jade, 20, having to testify. “It was going to get ugly.”

A source close to the Full House alum, meanwhile, explains that the pair “were tired of being in limbo” and “couldn’t move on with their lives” until they pleaded guilty.

The U.S. Attorney’s office announced on Thursday, May 21, that Loughlin, 55, and Giannulli, 56, had accepted a plea deal and would admit their guilt on fraud charges. They officially entered their pleas during a virtual court appearance on Friday, May 22, although the judge won’t accept them until he sees pre-sentencing reports from the Massachusetts Probation Service. Their sentencing is scheduled for August 21.

“In the end, they had the choice of 50 years or a few months behind bars,” the Loughlin source tells Us. “You do the math.”

As part of a plea deal, the actress agreed to serve two months in prison, pay a $150,000 fine and serve 100 hours of community service. The Mossimo founder, meanwhile, is expected to spend five months behind bars, pay $250,000 and serve 250 hours of community service. They both also agreed to serve two years of supervised release.

“It’s not only her life. The kids’ lives were also being affected,” the Loughlin source adds, explaining that Bella and Olivia Jade are thrilled to have “the cloud of negative press around them gone so they can finally move on.”

Loughlin and Giannulli were indicted in March 2019 for paying $500,000 in bribes to get their daughters into the University of Southern California as crew recruits despite the girls having no experience with the sport.

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Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli's Family Album With Bella, Olivia Jade

Lori Loughlin, her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, and their daughters, Bella and Olivia Jade, have weathered a difficult period amid the couple’s alleged involvement in the college admissions scandal, but the family has also celebrated good times together.

The Full House alum first met Giannulli in 1995 and two years later the duo eloped on Thanksgiving on November 27, 1997. Loughlin told Entertainment Tonight in February 2018 that their marriage is successful because they maintain open lines of communication.

“He’s my guy, he’s my person,” the When Calls the Heart star said at the time. “It’s communicating, it’s listening, it’s picking and choosing your battles. It’s being flexible, it’s all of that.”

Loughlin and the Mossimo founder welcomed their first child together, Bella, on September 16, 1998. One year later, Loughlin gave birth to their second daughter, Olivia Jade, on September 28, 1999. Olivia Jade later became a social media influencer with her YouTube channel, gaining more than 1 million subscribers for her videos, where she shares beauty and fashion tips.

Bella and Olivia Jade went on to attend the University of Southern California. Loughlin and Giannulli were arrested in March 2019 for allegedly falsifying their daughters’ participation on USC’s crew team in a bribe to get accepted into the school. One month later, the couple pleaded not guilty to fraud and money laundering conspiracy charges. Us Weekly confirmed in October 2019 that Bella and Olivia Jade are no longer enrolled at USC.

The Fuller House alum told Us in 2016 that she has a special relationship with both of her daughters.

“I would say that I am loving but that I am firm,” Loughlin said at the time. “I would say that … I am available, and they have access to me. I am involved, but I am not hovering. I’m there to guide. I think I’m funny, but they don’t. But I still make that joke. They kind of roll their eyes at me, but I am funny. I’m funny! And they’re like, ‘No, you’re not.’ But anyways, we have fun. We have a good time together.”

Scroll down to see photos of the Giannulli family throughout the years.

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