Lori Loughlin has been dropped by the Hallmark Channel. Picture: Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP
Lori Loughlin has been dropped by the Hallmark Channel. Picture: Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

Actor loses job over cheating scandal

One day after Lori Loughlin was ensnared in a bombshell college admissions investigation and released on a $US1 million bond, the actress has been dropped by the Hallmark Channel.

On Thursday, a rep for Crown Media - the umbrella group that includes the Hallmark Channel - confirmed to Fox News the company had cut ties with the 54-year-old star.

"We are saddened by the recent news surrounding the college admissions allegations," the statement read.

"We are no longer working with Lori Loughlin and have stopped development of all productions that air on the Crown Media Family Network channels involving Lori Loughlin, including Garage Sale Mysteries, an independent third-party production."

Crown Media also added the series When Calls the Heart would not be airing on Sunday.

"We are evaluating all creative options related to When Calls the Heart series," the company stated.

Lori Loughlin has been dropped from US network the Hallmark Channel. Picture: Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP
Lori Loughlin has been dropped from US network the Hallmark Channel. Picture: Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

When reached by Fox News, a rep for Loughlin said they "have no information to share".

Loughlin and the Hallmark Channel were deeply intertwined. She's been among its so-called "Christmas queens" toplining a slate of popular holiday movies. She's also starred in the ongoing Garage Sale Mysteries movies.

The company initially took a wait-and-see approach after a federal investigation of the scheme, in which several dozen prominent parents have been implicated, came to light earlier this week.

Loughlin and her husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, are accused of paying bribes to secure their daughters' admissions to top college programs.

On Wednesday, the Full House star was taken into custody over her alleged connection to the scheme. She was released later that day on a $US1 million bond.

As part of her bond arrangement, Loughlin is being permitted to travel within the continental U.S. as well as British Columbia, where she is currently filming. She will have to surrender her passport in November, when her projects are expected to wrap.

Lori Loughlin (centre) poses with her daughters Bella (left) and Olivia Jade. Picture: Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP
Lori Loughlin (centre) poses with her daughters Bella (left) and Olivia Jade. Picture: Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP

On Tuesday, Giannulli appeared in court and was released on $US1 million ($A1.4 million) bond, secured by the couple's home.

The judge also ordered Giannulli restrict his travel to the continental United States and surrender his passport.

Loughlin did not appear in court on Tuesday because she was filming a movie in Vancouver at the time of Giannulli's arrest. According to multiple reports, the actress landed at LAX on Tuesday during her husband's court hearing.

Federal law enforcement officials went to Loughlin's home in Los Angeles on Tuesday and discovered she was out of the country, according to TMZ.

She faces charges of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest-services mail fraud, according to a criminal complaint.

Loughlin and Giannulli are accused of agreeing to pay $500,000 in bribes to have their two daughters designated as recruits for the University of Southern California crew team.

This though neither child had participated in the sport. Their daughter, YouTube star Olivia Jade, attends USC. It was not clear if their other daughter, Isabella, has attended the university.

Fellow actress Felicity Huffman, an Academy Award nominee, was arrested at her home on Tuesday for her alleged involvement in the scheme.

She appeared in Los Angeles federal court on Tuesday looking tired before posting $US250,000 ($A354,000) bail and surrendering her passport.

Loughlin, Giannulli and Huffman are all ordered to appear in federal court in Boston on March 29 for a preliminary hearing.

More than four dozen people have been charged in the nationwide scam, which is alleged to have placed students in top-tier schools like Yale, Georgetown, Stanford, the University of Southern California, UCLA and the University of Texas.

A federal investigation into the matter - dubbed "Operation Varsity Blues" - has been ongoing for more than a year.

This story first appeared on Fox News and was reproduced with permission


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