According to a press release from the Department of Justice, Teresa and Joe Giudice were indicted by a federal grand jury in a 39-count indictment for a multitude of federal crimes, including mail fraud, wire fraud, bank fraud, making false statements on loan applications, bankruptcy fraud, and failure to file tax returns. The New Jersey couple regularly appear on the Bravo TV show "Real Housewives of New Jersey."
According to the Indictment, the Giusepe's are accused of the following acts:
- From 2001 to 2008, the Giuseppe's allegedly committed mail and wire fraud by submitting fraudulent loan and mortgage applications, along with false supporting documentation. In particular, they are accused of falsely stating that they were "employed and/or receiving substantial salaries when, in fact, they were either not employed or not receiving such salaries."
- In 2001, Teresa Giudice applied for a mortgage loan of $121,500, and she allegedly falsely claimed she was employed as an "executive assistant," and she provided fake W-2 forms and fake paycheck stubs which she claimed were issued by her employer. The Government alleges that Mrs. Guidice's claims related to this mortgage loan were false.
- In 2009, the Giudices filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Newark, New Jersey. The Guidice's, along with anyone else who files for bankruptcy protection, were required to disclose their assets, income, and liabilities, among other things, to the United States Trustee. The Government claims that the Giudice's intentionally "concealed businesses they owned, income they received from a rental property, and Teresa Giudice's true income from the television show 'The Real Housewives of New Jersey,' website sales, and personal and magazine appearances." The indictment also argues that the Giudice's concealed their anticipated increase in income from the upcoming season of the "Real Housewives of New Jersey." As a result of these alleged actions, the Giudice's are charged with committing bankruptcy fraud for concealing and making false oaths and declarations about the assets and income during their bankruptcy case.
- The Indictment also alleges that during tax years 2004 through 2008, Giuseppe "Joe" Giudice received income totaling $996,459, but did not file tax returns for those years.
The Guidice's are looking at a potentially substantial sentence if convicted of these crimes, and are specifically looking at the following maximum punishments:
- Conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud - up to 20 years in prison and a maximum $250,000 fine.
- Bank fraud and loan application fraud counts - each carry a maximum of 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine.
- Bankruptcy fraud counts each carry a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
- Failure to file a tax return counts each carry a maximum penalty of one year in prison and a $100,000 fine.