‘Real Housewives’ star, husband plead guilty to mortgage fraud

by Ryan Smith05 Mar 2014
Two of the stars of Bravo’s “The Real Housewives of New Jersey” have pleaded guilty to a string of crimes committed as part of mortgage and tax fraud scams.

Teresa Giudice and her husband, Giuseppe “Joe” Giudice each pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, one count of bankruptcy fraud by concealment of assets, one count of bankruptcy fraud by false oaths and one count of bankruptcy fraud by false declarations. Giuseppe Giudice also pleaded guilty to one count of failure to file a tax return, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

“Teresa and Giuseppe Giudice used deception and fraud to cheat banks, bankruptcy court and the IRS,” said U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman. “With their guilty pleas, they admitted the schemes with which they were charged. Having now confessed their wrongdoing, the Giudices face the real cost of their criminal conduct.”

Prosecutors say that from 2001 to 2008, the Giudices submitted fraudulent loan applications and supporting documentation in order to get mortgages, claiming that they were employed and “receiving substantial salaries” when neither was true. In September of 2001, for instance, Teresa Giudice applied for a $121,500 mortgage and falsely claimed on her application that she was employed as an executive assistant. She submitted phony pay stubs and W-2 forms to back up her claim.

The Giudices filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection in 2009, but intentionally concealed income from businesses they owned, Teresa Giudice’s salary from “The Real Housewives”, money made from personal appearances, and other assets.

As part of their plea agreement, the Giudices will have to forfeit any profits from their fraud, and Teresa Giudice will have to pay the government $200,000 at the time of her sentencing in July. Teresa Giudice faces up to 27 months in prison, according to a Reuters report. Giuseppe Giudice could face up to four years and – as an Italian citizen – possible deportation.


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