Loughlin and Giannulli Plead Not Guilty in College Scandal

(Bloomberg) -- TV sitcom veteran Lori Loughlin, her husband, and former Pimco chief executive Douglas Hodge pleaded not guilty in the U.S. college admissions bribery scandal after being indicted last week.

All three said in federal court filings Monday that they would waive an appearance for arraignment on charges of conspiracy to commit fraud and conspiracy to launder money. Loughlin’s husband is clothing designer Mossimo Giannulli.

The 19 indicted parents also include former TPG executive Bill McGlashan, whose lawyer has called the case “deeply flawed.” Another 13 parents, including Gordon Caplan, the former co-chair of law firm Willkie Farr & Gallagher, and actor Felicity Huffman, have agreed to plead guilty.

In all, the Justice Department alleges, 33 parents funneled a total of $25 million in bribes and fees through admitted ringleader William Singer for a test-taking surrogate to ace the SAT or ACT for their children, or to pay off university sports coaches to get the kids in as phony recruits.

David Sidoo, a Vancouver businessman who was the first to be indicted, has also entered a plea of not guilty, as have Gamal Abdelaziz, Elisabeth Kimmel, Michelle Janavs, John Wilson, I-Hsin Chen, Robert Zangrillo and Homayoun Zadeh.

Even as the parents enter their pleas and plan their legal strategies, the probe continues. Prosecutors said in a March 29 filing that they expected to make more arrests.

Over the weekend the Wall Street Journal reported, citing a person with knowledge of the matter, that they have informed some of the college students or graduates whose parents were implicated that they may also be targets of the investigation. The Journal added that this doesn’t mean they will face charges but could pressure more parents to plead guilty or their children to offer information on the case.

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