- The Department of Justice sought records from several notable Southern California prep schools during its nationwide investigation into a colossal college cheating scandal.
- Two sources familiar with the probe told the Los Angeles Times that the unnamed schools, some of the most distinguished in the area, were issued subpoenas by federal authorities for records regarding involved students. INSIDER has reached out to multiple private schools across Los Angeles.
- INSIDER reached out to Marymount High School, an all-girls private Catholic school attended by actress Lori Loughlin’s two daughters, Isabella Rose Giannulli and Olivia Jade Giannulli. The school declined to comment.
- In a Youtube vlog of her last day of high school, Olivia Giannulli said “I’m excited to go do the school prank but I’m also literally never at school … I think my class … maybe they forget I go there. Kidding!”
- The sources familiar with the probe told the Los Angeles Times that officials are not accusing the private high schools of wrongdoing, but instead are trying to seek further information about student performance.
The Department of Justice sought records from several notable Southern California prep schools during its nationwide investigation into a colossal college cheating scandal that has implicated dozens of people, including actresses Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin.
The unnamed schools are some of the most distinguished private institutions in the area, according to two sources familiar with the probe who spoke to the Los Angeles Times. They told the Times that federal authorities issued subpoenas for records regarding some of the involved students.
Authorities allege that parents spent an average of between $US250,000 and $US400,000 per student in an extensive scheme that involved bribery, falsifying standardised tests, and faking involvement on sports teams to unfairly gain access to elite universities. The ringleader, William “Rick” Singer, has been accused of paying off college coaches, administrators, and standardised-test proctors to carry out his plan. He pleaded guilty to charges on Tuesday.
INSIDER has reached out to multiple private schools across Los Angeles. One of those institutions, Marymount High School, an all-girls private Catholic school, was attended by Loughlin’s two daughters, Isabella Rose Giannulli and Olivia Jade Giannulli. Marymount declined to comment for this story.
Loughlin and her husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, allegedly paid $US500,000 in bribes for their two daughters to be designated as recruits to the University of Southern California’s crew team, according to the indictment. However, neither of the women actually rowed crew. INSIDER has contacted Marymount’s head rowing coach for comment.
Both of Loughlin’s daughters are prominent social media figures, and Olivia Jade Giannulli has an active Youtube vlog where she talks about her experiences at USC to almost two million subscribers. Last May, after graduating from Marymount, she took to Youtube to document her last day of high school.
“I felt that I had to film my last day of high school since I filmed my first, obviously” she said in the video, which included scenes of the graduating senior’s ‘class prank’, in which students set off the fire alarm, danced on tables, and draped younger students in plastic wrap.
“I’m excited to go do the school prank but I’m also literally never at school … I think my class … maybe they forget I go there. Kidding!” she said in the video.
An affidavit released by the Justice Department cited emails, mostly between Mossimo Giannulli and a cooperating witness, that show how the Giannullis attempted to get their daughters admitted to USC. In one email, Loughlin wrote “I have some concerns and want to fully understand the game plan and make sure we have a roadmap for success as it relates to [our daughter] and getting her into a school other than ASU!”
In another email, Giannulli acknowledged that Isabella Giannulli’s academic qualifications “were at or just below the ‘low end’ of USC’s admission standards.”
Prosecutors say that the Giannullis agreed to use bribes to facilitate her admission as a crew coxswain, and took photos of her on the family’s rowing machine to better carry out the ploy.
USC said in a statement to INSIDER that it had “not been accused of any wrongdoing” and, in addition to cooperating with federal prosecutors, was conducting an internal investigation into the matter.
The sources familiar with the probe told the Los Angeles Times that officials are not accusing the private high schools of wrongdoing, but instead are trying to seek further information about student performance.
Loughlin was taken into custody Wednesday morning, and her husband was taken into custody on Tuesday afternoon, according to the Associated Press. Huffman is also in custody.
- Read more:
- A former CEO’s daughter was allegedly listed as co-captain of a Japanese national soccer team as part of a $US25 million college admission scheme
- The FBI busted rich parents for allegedly bribing their kids into elite schools. Here’s the not-so-secret way the superrich game college admissions.
- 8 colleges were named in the massive college-admissions scandal. Here’s how they’re responding.
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