Here's 'the only way' Lori Loughlin and her husband could avoid prison time: report

Federal prosecutors are hoping to "make an example" out of Felicity Huffman, Lori Loughlin and the rest of the parents charged in connection with the massive college bribery scheme announced last month.

Sources close to the investigation told People that prosecutors in the case are hoping to get prison time for all those charged in an effort to make a statement that celebrity, wealth and power don't allow lawbreakers to avoid the consequences of their actions. 

"They want to send a clear message, and that message includes jail time," the source explained. "Prosecutors know this is a high profile case and they want to make an example of the defendants."

SEE ALSO: Lori Loughlin and husband 'not seeing how serious this is' amid new charges

That explains why prosecutors reportedly offered all 36 parents charged in the case plea deals, all of which had reduced prison time attached to them. Huffman pled guilty to her crimes after agreeing to a plea deal earlier this week, which will likely result in about four months behind bars. 

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Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin arrive at Boston courthouse
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Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin arrive at Boston courthouse
Actress Felicity Huffman arrives at federal court in Boston on Wednesday, April 3, 2019, to face charges in a nationwide college admissions bribery scandal. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 3: Actress Lori Loughlin and her husband Mossimo Giannulli, wearing green tie at left, leave the John Joseph Moakley United States Courthouse in Boston on April 3, 2019. Hollywood stars Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin were among 13 parents scheduled to appear in federal court in Boston Wednesday for the first time since they were charged last month in a massive college admissions cheating scandal. They were among 50 people - including coaches, powerful financiers, and entrepreneurs - charged in a brazen plot in which wealthy parents allegedly schemed to bribe sports coaches at top colleges to admit their children. Many of the parents allegedly paid to have someone else take the SAT or ACT exams for their children or correct their answers, guaranteeing them high scores. (Photo by Pat Greenhouse/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 3: Actress Lori Loughlin, in tan at center, leaves as her husband Mossimo Giannulli, in green tie at right, follows behind her outside the John Joseph Moakley United States Courthouse in Boston on April 3, 2019. Hollywood stars Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin were among 13 parents scheduled to appear in federal court in Boston Wednesday for the first time since they were charged last month in a massive college admissions cheating scandal. They were among 50 people - including coaches, powerful financiers, and entrepreneurs - charged in a brazen plot in which wealthy parents allegedly schemed to bribe sports coaches at top colleges to admit their children. Many of the parents allegedly paid to have someone else take the SAT or ACT exams for their children or correct their answers, guaranteeing them high scores. (Photo by Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
Actress Felicity Huffman arrives at federal court in Boston on Wednesday, April 3, 2019, to face charges in a nationwide college admissions bribery scandal. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Actress Felicity Huffman arrives at federal court in Boston on Wednesday, April 3, 2019, to face charges in a nationwide college admissions bribery scandal. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Actress Lori Loughlin, front, and husband, clothing designer Mossimo Giannulli, rear, depart federal court in Boston on Wednesday, April 3, 2019, after facing charges in a nationwide college admissions bribery scandal. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Actress Felicity Huffman arrives at federal court in Boston on Wednesday, April 3, 2019, to face charges in a nationwide college admissions bribery scandal. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Actress Felicity Huffman arrives at federal court in Boston on Wednesday, April 3, 2019, to face charges in a nationwide college admissions bribery scandal. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 3: Actress Lori Loughlin, in tan at right, and her husband Mossimo Giannulli, in green tie behind her, leave the John Joseph Moakley United States Courthouse in Boston on April 3, 2019. Hollywood stars Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin were among 13 parents scheduled to appear in federal court in Boston Wednesday for the first time since they were charged last month in a massive college admissions cheating scandal. They were among 50 people - including coaches, powerful financiers, and entrepreneurs - charged in a brazen plot in which wealthy parents allegedly schemed to bribe sports coaches at top colleges to admit their children. Many of the parents allegedly paid to have someone else take the SAT or ACT exams for their children or correct their answers, guaranteeing them high scores. (Photo by Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 3: Actress Felicity Huffman, center, leaves the John Joseph Moakley United States Courthouse in Boston on April 3, 2019. Hollywood stars Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin were among 13 parents scheduled to appear in federal court in Boston Wednesday for the first time since they were charged last month in a massive college admissions cheating scandal. They were among 50 people - including coaches, powerful financiers, and entrepreneurs - charged in a brazen plot in which wealthy parents allegedly schemed to bribe sports coaches at top colleges to admit their children. Many of the parents allegedly paid to have someone else take the SAT or ACT exams for their children or correct their answers, guaranteeing them high scores. (Photo by Pat Greenhouse/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
Actress Lori Loughlin, front, and husband, clothing designer Mossimo Giannulli, left, depart federal court in Boston on Wednesday, April 3, 2019, after facing charges in a nationwide college admissions bribery scandal. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
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Meanwhile, Loughlin and her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, reportedly rejected a plea deal and, as a result, were slapped with additional money laundering charges. If convicted, they could each face 20 years in prison for either of their charges, meaning a potential total of 40 years behind bars.

The couple, who has yet to admit any guilt, is reportedly trying to avoid prison at all costs, which is looking more and more unlikely. The investigation insider told People that there's only one potential way for them to avoid serving time.

"[The prosecutors] are saying that the only way anyone’s going to escape jail time is if they go to trial and are found not guilty," the source said. "But they’re saying that they have such meticulous evidence that it would be foolish to take that risk."

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Lori Loughlin and husband Mossimo Giannulli together
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Lori Loughlin and husband Mossimo Giannulli together
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 18: Designer Mossimo Giannulli and actress Lori Loughlin attend LACMA's 50th Anniversary Gala sponsored by Christie's at LACMA on April 18, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Donato Sardella/Getty Images for LACMA)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - JUNE 03: Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli attend 6th Annual Kidstock Music And Arts Festival Sponsored By Hudson Jeans at Greystone Mansion on June 3, 2012 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Donato Sardella/WireImage)
MALIBU, CA - APRIL 21: Designer Mossimo Giannulli and actress Lori Loughlin attend the Malibu Lumber Yard grand opening held at the Malibu Lumber Yard on April 21, 2009 in Malibu, California. (Photo by John Shearer/WireImage)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 20: Actress Lori Loughlin (L) and husband Mossimo Giannulli attend the Saks Fifth Avenue's Unforgettable Evening cocktail reception benefiting Entertainment Industry Foundation's (EIF) Women's Cancer Research Fund held at the Beverly Wishire Hotel on February 20, 2008 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Donato Sardella/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 28: Lori Loughlin and Mossimo attend Louis Vuitton Gala Celebrating the Takashi Murakami Exhibition at Geffen Contemporary at Moca on October 28, 2007 in Los Angeles, CA. (Photo by BRIAN LINDENSMITH/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
John Stamos and Lori Loughlin during Target Hosts LA Fashion Week Party for Designer Mossimo Giannulli - Inside at Area in West Hollywood, California, United States. (Photo by L. Cohen/WireImage for LaForce and Stevens)
John Stamos, Lori Loughlin and Mossimo Giannulli during Target Hosts LA Fashion Week Party for Designer Mossimo Giannulli - Inside at Area in West Hollywood, California, United States. (Photo by L. Cohen/WireImage for LaForce and Stevens)
Mossimo Giannulli and Lori Loughlin during Target Hosts LA Fashion Week Party for Designer Mossimo Giannulli at Area in Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by L. Cohen/WireImage for LaForce and Stevens)
Lori Loughlin and Mossimo during Saks Fifth Avenues Unforgettable Evening Benefitting EIFs Womens Cancer Research Fund at Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, United States. (Photo by Donato Sardella/WireImage for Entertainment Industry Foundation)
Lori Loughlin and Mossimo during 30th Anniversary Party for Hello Kitty Presented by SANRIO and Target - Pink Carpet at Raleigh Studios in Hollywood, California, United States. (Photo by J. Vespa/WireImage for Sanrio, Inc)
Mossimo Giannulli & Lori Loughlin during Mossimo's New Collection Celebration at Moomba in West Hollywood, California, United States. (Photo by J. P. Aussenard/WireImage)
Lori Loughlin & Mossimo during Marc Anthony Pilots Jaguar's Tribute To Style - March 18, 2001 at Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, California, United States. (Photo by SGranitz/WireImage)
381656 06: Designer Mossimo Giannulli with actress wife Lori Loughlin, left, and actress Valerie Bertinelli attend a party to launch the famed sportswear designer Mossimo Giannulli Collection November 9, 2000 at The Drive-In Studios in New York City. (Photo by George DeSota/Getty Images)
Mossimo Giannulli & Lori Loughlin during 14th Carousel of Hope Ball for Barbara Davis Center for Diabetes at Beverly Hills Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, United States. (Photo by SGranitz/WireImage)
Lori Loughlin & Mossimo during An Evening of Song & Spirit A Benefit For Gaian Yoga For Life at Private House in Bel Air, California, United States. (Photo by SGranitz/WireImage)
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