It was only days ago that Lori Loughlin and her husband Mossimo Giannulli pleaded not guilty to fraud and money laundering charges they are facing for their alleged connection in the now infamous college admissions scam. The scam, which has affected dozens of wealthy and influential celebrity parents, has been dubbed by investigators as “Operation Varsity Blues.”
Loughlin and her husband have been accused of paying $500,000 worth of bribery funds to ensure their daughters Olivia Jade and Isabella get spots at the University of Southern California. They also allegedly presented their daughters as rowing crew recruits, despite the fact that neither girl ever participated in the sport, according to Fox News.
Olivia Jade is a 19-year-old YouTube and Instagram star who makes money through sponsored content and videos ranging from topics regarding makeup and beauty, to fashion. In one of her former videos, Olivia admitted to her followers that she didn’t really even want to go to college, but that it was her parents who felt she needed higher education. After recent events, it looks like Olivia would have been better off having never gone.
Olivia Jade Seen Out Publicly for the First Time Since College Admissions Scandal https://t.co/LSaNPdQqnE
— ELLE Magazine (US) (@ELLEmagazine) April 19, 2019
Former federal prosecutor Naema Rahmani explained why the teenager now faces the potential risk of being implicated in the scam. The main thing prosecutors will have to determine is whether or not Olivia was aware of her parents deceptive actions and played any sort of role in their misleading activity.
“There really could have only been two things – and it’s all the government has to prove. One is that they agreed to commit an unlawful act, and two is if they committed one overt act within the conspiracy. If you prove those two things, then the kids are on the hook as well. You can easily, easily argue that Olivia knew what was going on, she agreed to engage in this unlawful act by not filling out the application, by taking the picture – it can be an overt act to create liability for criminal liability.”
Of course, it will be difficult for the defense team to prove that Olivia was entirely oblivious to the entire thing. Even if she was not aware of the alleged deception in the beginning, it would have likely been brought to her attention later on when she would have been expected by her university to fulfill the requirements of a rowing crew recruit.
In wake of the scandal, Olivia has remained silent on social media and has not yet publicly commented on her family’s involvement with the scam.