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The FBI said 13 defendants have been taken into custody in the Los Angeles area, including Huffman.

Loughlin and Giannulli are scheduled to appear in court again in Boston on March 29.

Loughlin and Giannulli allegedly paid $500,000 to have their two daughters designated as University of Southern California recruits for the rowing team even though they don't participate in crew.

Meanwhile, William "Rick" Singer, 58, was charged racketeering conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy, conspiracy to defraud U.S. and obstruction of justice for his alleged involvement in the scheme. E!

Best known for her role on TV's "Desperate Housewives", Huffman is accused of paying $15,000 to Singer's fake charity, the Key Worldwide Foundation, to facilitate cheating for her daughter on the SATs, the complaint says.

At a brief court appearance Wednesday, a judge allowed Loughlin to be released on $1 million bond and travel to the area around Vancouver, Canada, to work but otherwise imposed strict travel restrictions.

The narrative of the investigation, outlined in court records and by several people familiar with the case, sheds light on its Boston roots, its unlikely origin, and its national scope.

Though prosecutors say most emails were from Giannulli, Loughlin was included and commented on some of them.

"Dozens of individuals involved in a nationwide conspiracy that facilitated cheating on college entrance exams and the admission of students to elite universities as purported athletic recruits were arrested by federal agents in multiple states and charged in documents unsealed on March 12, 2019, in federal court in Boston", a press release from the U.S. Attorney's Office in MA announced about the indictments. The consultant also hired ringers to take college entrance exams, and paid off insiders at testing centers to alter students' scores.

He also offered investigators a tantalizing tip, one entirely unrelated to stock prices - a Yale University women's soccer coach had asked him for a bribe to help get his daughter admitted into the elite school. Both were charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and wire fraud.

According to the US-based media reports, Hollywood actresses Huffman and Lori Loughlin have been charged along with almost 50 other people in what the United States prosecutors say was a scheme in which wealthy parents paid bribes to get their children into some of the nation's most elite colleges by faking or facilitating ACT/SAT exams.

A former Yale football coach pleaded guilty and helped build the case against others.

Lelling said, via CNN: "This case is about the widening corruption of elite college admissions through the steady application of wealth combined with fraud".

At a court hearing Tuesday in Maryland, a federal magistrate freed Ernst on $200,000 bond. Huffman later made arrangements to pursue the scheme a second time, for her younger daughter, before deciding not to do so, ' according to ABC 7.

Mr Macy has not been charged, but authorities have not said why.