Felicity Huffman to Be Released on $250,000 Bail After Being Indicted in Alleged College Bribery Scam
By Desiree Murphy & Liz Calvario
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A spokesperson for the United States Attorney’s Office tells ET that Felicity Huffman will be released on a $250,000 bond, after she was charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services fraud for allegedly paying money to get her and husband William H. Macy's eldest daughter, 18-year-old Sofia, into an elite college.
Just a few hours after her arrest at her Los Angeles area home on Tuesday, the Desperate Housewives star arrived in U.S. District Court for a hearing after news broke that she was one of 40 people charged in a massive college admissions cheating scam. Full House star Lori Loughlin and her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, were also charged, however, Loughlin was not present.
First to appear before the federal judge on Tuesday at 4:20 p.m. was Giannulli. The judge set a $1 million bond for the fashion designer, who put up his house as collateral. He also had to surrender his passport. Additionally, his travel was restricted to the continental U.S. Giannulli, wearing a loose blue sweatshirt, looked anxious as he appeared in court. He answered "yes" when the judge asked if he understood the conditions of his detainment. The judge did mention Giannulli's "wife" as his co-defendant and noted that he would allow her to travel only to Canada to continue working.
Loughlinand Giannulli allegedly paid money to have their two daughters -- Isabella, 20, and Olivia, 19 -- deemed as recruits for the University of Southern California's crew team, though, according to court documents, they never actually participated in the sport.
A spokeswoman for the FBI confirmed to ET that an arrest warrant is out for Loughlin, who was out of town and not at her house when authorities showed up. Giannulli was arrested without incident this morning in Los Angeles.
At 4:35 p.m., Huffman appeared before the judge. The actress wore a blue, long-sleeved collared shirt, glasses and her hair pulled back in a ponytail, and kept looking around the courtroom as her husband (who was not indicted) sat quietly inside. Earlier in the day at the courthouse, Macy politely declined to talk about his wife when a reporter asked if he had any comment.
“He seemed calm, but concerned,” an eyewitness says. The Shameless star was spotted walking down a hallway at about 1:25 p.m. on Tuesday and entering a private room. The hearing for his wife was scheduled for 2 p.m., but didn't start until after 4 p.m.
Huffman was asked to give up her passport and her travel was restricted to the continental U.S. She was also restricted from discussing the case with victims and others involved. Federal authorities also asked the judge to restrict her from discussing the case with her husband, but the judge declined. The actress only responded "yes" to the judge's questions, asking if she understood the conditions. An eyewitness described Huffman as "stoic."
The next court date for both Huffman and Giannulli is in Boston on March 29 at 2:30 p.m.