Lori Loughlin issued an apology for her role in the college admissions bribery scandal that shocked the public last year.
“I made an awful decision. I went along with a plan to give my daughters an unfair advantage in the college admissions process,” the 56-year-old actress said in court on Friday, shortly after she was sentenced to two months in federal prison.
“In doing so, I ignored my intuition and allowed myself to be swayed from my moral compass,” Loughlin admitted before U.S. District Judge Nathaniel Gorton. “I thought I was acting out of love for my children, but in reality it only undermined and diminished my daughters’ abilities and accomplishments.”
Loughlin and her fashion designer husband Mossimo Giannulli, 57, were accused of paying $500,000 to William “Rick” Singer – the founder of The Edge College & Career Network, which reportedly funneled monetary bribes from parents to colleges.
The scam successfully got Loughlin and Giannulli’s two daughters, Isabella Rose Giannulli, 21, and Olivia Jade Giannulli, 20, accepted into University of Southern California under false crew team credentials. Neither girls had played the sport competitively.
When released, Loughlin will be supervised for two years and will have to serve 100 hours of community service. She was also ordered to pay a fine of $150,000.
Giannulli faced a steeper sentence of five months in prison, two years of supervision upon release and 250 hours of community service for his part in the bribery scandal. He will have to pay a fine of $250,000.
The difference in the pair’s sentencing stems from Loughlin pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud in May while her husband plead guilty to the same charge plus one count of honest services wire and mail fraud.
Despite the high-profile sentence, Loughlin shared that she understood her decision “helped exacerbate existing inequalities in society, generally, and the higher education system, more specifically.”
“That realization weighs heavily on me and while I wish I could go back and do things differently, I can only take responsibility and move forward. I have great faith in God and I believe in redemption,” Loughlin continued. “I will do everything in my power to redeem myself and use this experience as a catalyst to do good and give back for the rest of my life.”