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MUSIC: One-man band has gone surf-rockin' - Arkansas Online MUSIC: One-man band has gone surf-rockin' - Arkansas Online Don't let the pandemic stop you from enjoying music - LancasterOnline Best Classical Music of 2020 - The New York Times MUSIC: One-man band has gone surf-rockin' - Arkansas Online Posted: 03 Dec 2020 12:08 AM PST Geoff Curran loves surf music and The Ventures. A lot. He is so besotted with this rock 'n' roll sub-genre that he formed The Supraphonics — "Pulaski County's No. 1 surf combo" — in which he is the only member. Three years ago Curran, the drummer for Little Rock alt-country champs Mulehead and a frequent collaborator with fellow Mulehead Kevin Kerby — released "Christmas with the Supraphonics," a Yuletide record of seasonal chestnuts like "Silver Bells," "Winter Wonderland" and others done up in full-on, ha

Judge calls alleged investigator misconduct in Lori Loughlin case 'serious and disturbing' - USA TODAY

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Words don't fade away for those involved in the college admission scandal. USA TODAY

BOSTON — A federal judge Friday called allegations of law enforcement misconduct in the nation's college admissions scandal headlined by actress Lori Loughlin "serious and disturbing" as he ordered prosecutors to provide more information in the blockbuster case.

U.S. District Judge Nathaniel Gorton made the comments in a written order as defense attorneys for 14 parents, including Loughlin, seek dismissal of the case because of the alleged misconduct. 

At issue are notes Rick Singer, the mastermind of a nationwide college admissions scheme, took on his iPhone after discussions with FBI investigators on Oct. 2, 2018 about recorded phone calls they directed him to make to parents who were his clients. 

Lori Loughlin and husband Mossimo Giannulli exit the Boston Federal Court house after a pre-trial hearing with Magistrate Judge Kelley at the John Joseph Moakley US Courthouse in Boston on August 27, 2019. Loughlin and Giannulli are charged with conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering in the college admissions scandal.

 (Photo: Joseph Prezioso, AFP/Getty Images)

More: Prosecutors deny misconduct claims against Lori Loughlin, release rowing photos in admissions case

Singer was cooperating with the FBI. He wrote that agents told him to lie and get his clients to restate they were making bribes to college officials – counter to what he claimed he actually told them before they paid him to get their children into college.

"The Court considers the allegations in Singer's October notes to be serious and disturbing," Gorton wrote. "While government agents are permitted to coach cooperating witnesses during the course of an investigation, they are not permitted to suborn the commission of a crime."

United States District Judge Nathaniel Gorton delivers remarks at a Naturalization Ceremony at Faneuil Hall on July 10, 2014.

 (Photo: Donald A. Harney, City of Boston)

The judge did not decide whether to dismiss the case, instead ordering prosecutors to respond to the allegations. The defendants then have until May 1 to respond to the government. 

The U.S. Attorney's Office declined to comment. 

In one note, Singer wrote that FBI officials got "loud and abrasive" and "continue to ask me to tell a fib" about what he told clients before they paid into his scheme.

He said the FBI wanted him to not to restate what he actually told his clients — that they were making a payment to an athletic program, not a college coach.

More: Lori Loughlin, other parents seek college admissions case dismissal over 'extraordinary misconduct'

Defense attorneys say the notes prove their clients' innocence – that parents thought they were making legitimate donations to college programs, not bribing college officials, to get their children admitted into elite colleges. The defense says the government "knowingly withheld" the evidence, which was not turned over until February.

They've also argued the notes, which they first raised in court Feb. 27, undermine "one of the government’s most valued pieces of evidence," ie. secretly recorded phone calls that the FBI had Singer make with his past clients to admit to their crimes. 

"The notes state that agents browbeat Singer and instructed him to lie in order to elicit misleading evidence that was inconsistent with the actual facts that Singer had explained to agents," attorneys for the parents wrote in a motion to dismiss filed last month. 

Also: Lori Loughlin, other parents argue college admissions case doesn't belong in Massachusetts

Loughlin and her fashion designer husband, Mossimo Giannulli, face multiple federal  fraud, money laundering and bribery charges for allegedly paying Singer $500,000 to have their two daughters designated as fake crew recruits to get them admitted into the University of Southern California.

Prosecutors have acknowledged they knew about the about the existence of Singer's notes during the FBI's "Varsity Blues" college admissions investigation in October 2018. They've said it should have been turned over earlier to the defense, but they believed it to be privileged information that was not subject to review. Prosecutors say Singer's attorneys finally agreed to waive privilege rights of the notes in February, prompting them to turn it over to the defense.

The government has said they did not investigate Singer's claims because they knew they were untrue and there was "nothing to investigate" and that any alleged entrapment complaint is an issue for trial.

Loughlin and seven other parents accused of bribing USC are scheduled to go to trial in Boston federal court in October. Six other parents are slated for trial in January 2021.

Thirty-two out of 53 defendants charged in the college admissions scandal have pleaded guilty since the scandal broke nearly one year ago. Sixteen parents, including actress Felicity Huffman, and two college coaches been sentenced for their crimes. Only two have avoided prison.

Reach Joey Garrison on Twitter @joeygarrison.

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