New reports are stating that Lori Loughlin and her husband Mossimo Giannuli did not think they were breaking any laws when they paid $500,000 in bribe money to get their two daughters into the University of Southern California (USC).

Sources close to Loughlin are saying that she feels that she was “manipulated” by Rick Singer, the person behind the entire college admissions scam.

“[Lori and her husband] claim they were under the impression they might be breaking rules, but not laws. They feel they were manipulated by those involved and are planning that as part of their defense,” a source said, according to Fox News. “They realize how serious the charges are, but feel that once the judge hears their story he will see they had no bad intentions.”

After Loughlin and Giannuli rejected the lenient plea deal that was snatched up by their fellow defendants like Felicity Huffman, they were stunned when the judge hit them with more charges that could put them in prison for forty years.

“When Lori heard the number of years she could spend in prison she broke down crying,” the source said. “The thought of being separated from her loved ones for years brought her to her knees. She has watched as the other families cut deals but her husband feels they are not guilty and should plead not guilty.”

While the source believed that Loughlin and Giannuli were indeed ignorant that they were committing a crime here, the insider was not sure if a judge and jury would feel the same way.

“They in no way felt they were money laundering,” the source said. “They thought the money would be used for a donation and to benefit the school. Even so, this has been one of the toughest decisions of Lori‘s life. [Their friends] have explained to them that they cannot just plead ignorance. In the end, she trusts those who are advising her and somehow believes there is a chance she will go free.”

At this point, it’s looking like an example is going to be made of Loughlin and Giannuli whether they were “manipulated” into doing this or not. While forty years behind bars for them sounds a bit harsh, the arrogance that they have displayed throughout this entire situation indicates that going to prison for some period of time might do them some good. Like many other Hollywood elites, these two appear to have lost all touch with the realities of the world after spending years behind the walls of their Beverly Hills mansion. Hopefully, if they do go to jail, they’ll come out as better and more grounded people.

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