Emmy-winning actress Felicity Huffman announced on Monday that she plans to enter a guilty plea to her charge in the college admissions bribery scandal, after admitting that she paid off an exam proctor to boost her daughter's SAT score.
Huffman was one of dozens of wealthy parents -- including fellow celeb Lori Loughlin, as well as several division one sports coaches -- who were accused last month of conspiracy and fraud in order to ensure their children's admission into elite universities. Federal prosecutors -- who gave the investigation the amazing nickname, Operation Varsity Blues -- alleged that Huffman funneled $15,000 into a fake charity in exchange for someone correcting her older daughter's SAT answers, as well as giving her child extra time to take the exam.
Huffman was arrested on March 12 and charged with one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud. No plea hearing date has been set yet.
In a statement, the actress apologized for her crimes, and accepted responsibility for her actions. Her full statement said:
"I am pleading guilty to the charge brought against me by the United States Attorney's Office. I am in full acceptance of my guilt, and with deep regret and shame over what I have done, I accept full responsibility for my actions and will accept the consequences that stem from those actions.
"I am ashamed of the pain I have caused my daughter, my family, my friends, my colleagues and the educational community. I want to apologize to them and, especially, I want to apologize to the students who work hard every day to get into college, and to their parents who make tremendous sacrifices to support their children and do so honestly. My daughter knew absolutely nothing about my actions, and in my misguided and profoundly wrong way, I have betrayed her. This transgression toward her and the public I will carry for the rest of my life. My desire to help my daughter is no excuse to break the law or engage in dishonesty."
Huffman's husband, fellow actor William H. Macy, was mentioned in the criminal complaint, but has not been charged with any crime. According to court documents, Macy knew of and agreed to the conspiracy; he and Huffman also discussed a similar plan for their younger daughter, though they ultimately did not go through with it.
Loughlin and her husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, stand accused of paying $500,000 in bribes to have their two daughters admitted as crew recruits at the University of Southern California, despite neither girl participating in the sport. In the wake of the scandal, Loughlin has been fired from her TV gigs on the Hallmark Channel and "Fuller House." She and Giannulli remain free on bail.
[via: The Hollywood Reporter, Variety]