Actor Lori Loughlin and her husband Mossimo Giannulli leave the federal courthouse in Boston. Reuters
Mossimo Giannulli is serving five months in prison for his role in the college admissions scandal.
He asked to serve the remainder of his sentence at home after spending 56 days in solitary confinement.
A judge denied his request, saying he had not “demonstrated an ‘extraordinary and compelling’ reason warranting his release.”
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A judge on Tuesday denied Mossimo Giannulli’s request to serve the remainder of his five-month prison sentence in the college admissions scandal at home.
Giannulli, who alongside his wife, Lori Loughlin, pleaded guilty to paying $500,000 to guarantee their daughters’ admissions to the University of Southern California as crew recruits, had asked to serve the remainder of his sentence at home after spending 56 days in solitary confinement over COVID-19 concerns.
In court papers filed on Tuesday seen by Insider, US District Judge Nathaniel M. Gorton said that Giannulli had not “demonstrated an ‘extraordinary and compelling’ reason warranting his release.”
“Although the Court is cognizant of the onerous conditions imposed on defendant as a result of the BOP’s emergency COVID-19 response, he has not established that those conditions alone demonstrate an ‘extraordinary and compelling’ reason for his release,” Gorton said.
He added that “every prisoner” in the Bureau of Prisons is “currently subjected onerous conditions due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” and that Giannulli had not explained why he should be given special treatment.
Giannulli reported to the Federal Correctional Institution in Lompoc, California, on November 19, and was put in solitary confinement as a two-week isolation method to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the prison.
But his lawyers said earlier this month that he spent 56 days in prison instead of two weeks and Giannulli was required to re-quarantine every time another prisoner arrived at Lompoc after him, despite not having contact with one another.
The lawyers said solitary confinement took a toll on Giannulli’s “mental, physical, and emotional well-being.”
“Giannulli satisfies all of the criteria for home confinement identified by Attorney General Barr: he is a non-violent, 57-year old man with no prior criminal record assigned to a minimum-security facility who poses no risk to his community. These facts, taken together with the extraordinary circumstances of his extensive period confined in solitary quarantine, warrant the requested reduction in his sentence and transfer to home confinement,” his lawyers had said in their request.
In his denial of the request, Gorton said that Giannulli had failed to show he had a condition that would put him at a higher risk for serious COVID-19 symptoms, and that the fear of COVID-19 alone, was “insufficient.”
He added that a five-month sentence was appropriate for Giannulli, and was made to dissuade others from committing similar crimes. He said that modifying or reducing Giannulli’s sentence would “undercut such deterrent.”
Giannulli and Loughlin are among more than 50 other parents, college-athletics coaches, school administrators, and college-entrance-exam administers were indicted in Operation Varsity Blues. Dozens of them have pleaded guilty since news of the scheme broke in March 2019.
Loughlin completed her two-month sentence for her role in the scandal in December.
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