Lori Loughlin, husband say government hiding evidence in college admission scandal

Actress Lori Loughlin and her husband have filed new court papers alleging prosecutors are withholding information pertaining to their involvement in a sweeping nationwide college admissions scandal, records show.

Continue Reading Below

Loughlin and fashion designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, have accused prosecutors of hindering their ability to properly prepare their arguments by neglecting to share witness interviews and exculpatory evidence with their legal team, according to court documents.

“This Court’s intervention is urgently needed,” reads the motion the compel production of material and exculpatory, which was filed Friday and later adds: “[T]he Government appears to be concealing exculpatory evidence that helps show that both Defendants believed all of the payments they made would go to USC itself – for legitimate, university-approved purposes – or to other legitimate charitable causes."

'TOO LATE' FOR LORI LOUGHLIN TO CHANGE NOT GUILTY PLEA: JUDGE NAPOLITANO

A spokesperson for the U.S. District Court in Massachusetts declined FOX Business' request for comment.

Designer Mossimo Giannulli and actress Lori Loughlin in 2015 (Photo by Donato Sardella/Getty Images for LACMA)

Loughlin and her husband are accused of paying approximately $500,000 to create nonexistent positions for their daughters on the University of Southern California’s crew team even though neither had ever taken part in the sport. The parents were initially charged in March and have consistently pleaded not guilty.

The parents are allegedly part of a vast conspiracy ring that came to light in March in which more than 50 parents were charged in a federal investigation, now known as “Varsity Blues.”

‘IT GETS WORSE IF YOU DON'T PLEAD’: EXPERTS SOUND OFF ON LATEST IN COLLEGE ADMISSIONS SCANDAL

Actress Lori Loughlin, front, and husband, clothing designer Mossimo Giannulli, depart federal court in Boston on Wednesday, April 3, 2019, after facing charges in a nationwide college admissions bribery scandal. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

In October, the couple and nine others were charged for conspiracy to commit federal program bribery “by bribing employees of the University of Southern California (USC) to facilitate their children’s admission,” the Department of Justice said in a press release.

“In exchange for the bribes, employees of the university allegedly designated the defendants’ children as athletic recruits – with little or no regard for their athletic abilities – or as members of other favored admissions categories,” the release stated.

Prosecutors have charged both Loughlin and Giannulli with conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and honest services mail and wire fraud; conspiracy to commit federal programs bribery and conspiracy to commit money laundering.

But the couple’s legal team is arguing they believed their payments were “legitimate donations” made through alleged mastermind William “Rick” Singer, and they did not intend for the money to be used as a bribe, court papers show.

Actress Lori Loughlin poses with her daughter Olivia Jade Giannulli, left. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File)

LORI LOUGHLIN'S DAUGHTER RETURNS TO YOUTUBE AFTER COLLEGE ADMISSIONS SCANDAL

“The Government’s view, meanwhile, is that Singer informed his clients, including Giannulli and Loughlin, that their payments … would actually be bribes,” the motion states. “Given these competing theories of the case, any statements by Singer as to precisely what he told his clients about how their funds would be used are critically important.”

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE ON FOX BUSINESS

The papers also bring into question USC’s intentions or involvement in the scheme, noting that if the university did, in fact, accept the money as legitimate donations, “then not only was there no bribery at USC, but also no fraud conspiracy at all.”

“Despite all this,” the 28-page motion states, “the Government has repeatedly denied that such evidence is material and has refused to disclose it.”

GET FOX BUSINESS ON THE GO BY CLICKING HERE