Lori Loughlin's Husband's Parents Both Died This Year: 'It's Been a Very Hard Time,' Source Says

Christina Dugan

As Lori Loughlin and her husband Mossimo Giannulli await their fate in the college admissions scandal, they are privately mourning the loss of the fashion designer’s parents.

Giannulli’s father, Gene, a retired architect, and his mother, Nancy, a homemaker, both died this year, sources confirm to PEOPLE. Gene died in January, and Nancy in July.

“It’s been a very hard time for them, particularly for Mossimo, who lost both of his parents,” a source close to the family recently told PEOPLE.

Adds a second source, “It’s been an emotional time for them.”

“But the court case has actually brought them closer together — their marriage is stronger than ever,” the source says.

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Donato Sardella/Getty Images for LACMA

On March 12, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Massachusetts announced that it had charged 50 people, including Loughlin and Giannulli, in the cheating scandal. Along with coaches, admissions counselors and fellow parents, they were accused of alleged crimes such as falsifying SAT scores and lying about the athletic skills of their children, allegedly working with Rick Singer, a college admissions consultant who has admitted his role as the ringleader of the scam and pleaded guilty in March to multiple charges.

Loughlin, 55, and Giannulli, 56, stand accused of paying $500,000 to have their two daughters, Olivia Jade, 20, and Isabella Rose, 21, designated as recruits to the USC crew team despite the fact that they did not participate in crew.

They were also indicted on an additional charge of fraud and money laundering and face up to 20 years in prison for each charge if convicted. The couple pleaded not guilty in April after turning down a plea deal because it included jail time. Their attorneys have not returned PEOPLE’s requests for comment.

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Sources recently told PEOPLE that Loughlin and Giannulli are sticking together despite the stress of the high-profile court case.

“Their marriage is solid,” said one source. “They love each other.”

Another source said the Full House star and Giannulli and are definitely “not divorcing” despite tabloid reports.

“Their focus right now is to get through their court case together and to show a united front,” said the source.