Lori Loughlin, aka ‘Aunt Becky,’ May Have Foreshadowed College Scam in ‘Full House’ Episode

By Zachary Stieber

Lori Loughlin, one of 50 arrested in a college bribery scheme, and who played “Aunt Becky” in “Full House,” appeared in a 1993 episode that focused on her on-screen husband scheming their twins’ way into an elite preschool.

Loughlin and her fashion designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, paid bribes totaling $500,000 to get their Isabella, 20, and Olivia Jade, 19, into the University of Southern California, FBI officials said.

The girls got in on the pretense of being recruits for the school’s crew team, despite the fact they’d never participated in the sport and didn’t row once getting to college.

About 25 years earlier, Loughlin’s “Aunt Becky” rejected her on-screen husband “Uncle Jesse’s” plan for getting their on-screen kids into a high-level preschool.

loughlin and full house cast
(L-R) “Full House” actors Bob Saget, Lori Laughlin, actor John Stamos, and actress Candice Bure, with Jeff Franklin during an induction ceremony on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Hollywood, Calif., on Nov. 16, 2009. (Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

Jesse, played by John Stamos, came up with a scheme in which he’d claim to be a diplomat and tell preschool administrators that sons Nicky and Alex had a range of skills, including speaking multiple languages.

The scheme stemmed from jealousy over friends of the family getting their son into a top preschool in the Bay Area. “Don’t let your kids fall behind,” the friend told them. “The most important choice a parent can make for their child is to pick the right preschool,” the friend’s husband added. “If you put your kid on the right track now, he’s going to be on the fast track for life.”

But Becky rejected the attempts to lie, telling him: “I know you want what’s best for them, but you know what? Maybe the fast track isn’t it. I mean, Nicky and Alex are normal and healthy kids, and whatever track they’re on, they seem to be doing OK.”

The episode, “Be True to Your Pre-School,” aired during season 6 of the hit show in 1993.

Actress Lori Laughlin and husband/designer Mossimo Giannulli in Las Vegas on April 26, 2002. (Scott Harrison/Getty Images)

Loughlin reprised her role in the show when it rebooted on Netflix as “Fuller House” several years ago.

Giannulli appeared in court on March 12, where a judge said that he could be released on $1 million bond. Loughlin has not been detained but has reportedly been in Vancouver filming a movie.

A warrant was issued for her arrest and she was expected to surrender on Wednesday. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Massachusetts said on Wednesday morning that Loughlin was due to appear in federal court in Los Angeles at 2 p.m.

Loughlin and Giannulli are slated to be arraigned in Boston on March 29.

Interviews

Loughlin regularly spoke about her children in interviews, saying in 2017 that it was tough seeing her oldest daughter, Isabella, going off to college.

In 2016, Loughlin told Us Weekly that she worked on instilling “good values” into her daughters, Isabella and Olivia Jade.

“I would say that I am loving but that I am firm. I would say that … I am available, and they have access to me. I am involved, but I am not hovering. I’m there to guide,” she told Us Weekly.

“Listen, I am not their friend. I am here. I am their mother. I’m here to guide them, and I think that is first and foremost,” she added. “Look, I try to instill good values and be a good person, and for the most part, I have to say that my girls, they are good people. They are good people. They have good hearts.”