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'Housewives' couple plead guilty to fraud in NJ

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - A "Real Housewives of New Jersey" star and her husband face prison time after they pleaded guilty Tuesday to federal fraud charges for concealing income and lying during bankruptcy proceedings.

'Real Housewives' Star Teresa Giudice Pleads Guilty To Fraud

In contrast to their often raucous on-screen personas, Teresa and Giuseppe "Joe"stood solemnly in front of U.S. Magistrate Esther Salas in Newark, speaking in barely audible tones as they admitted engaging in financial fraud.

Both pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and three types of bankruptcy fraud. Joe Giudice also pleaded guilty to failing to file a tax return for 2004, though he acknowledged he didn't file taxes on income of approximately $1 million between 2004 and 2008.

They had been scheduled for trial on more than 40 counts and had unsuccessfully sought separate trials.

Teresa Giudice said in a statement read by her lawyer, Henry Klingeman, that she takes responsibility "for a series of mistakes I made several years ago" and said she will make a statement to the court when the couple is sentenced on July 8.

"I will describe the choices I made, continue to take responsibility for my decisions and express my remorse to Judge Salas and the public," she wrote. "I am heartbroken that this is affecting my family - especially my four young daughters, who mean more to me than anything in the world."

Under federal sentencing guidelines, Joe Giudice faces a potential sentence of 37 to 46 months and Teresa Giudice could get 21 to 27 months, though Salas could deviate up or down from those ranges. Klingeman said after Tuesday's hearing that his client will seek probation.

Joe Giudice is an Italian citizen and could be deported upon completion of his prison term, said his attorney, Miles Feinstein. Giudice came to the U.S. as an infant and wasn't aware that he wasn't an American citizen, Feinstein said.

"It would be a grave injustice, and inhumane, for him to be deported," Feinstein said.

The couple was charged last year with exaggerating their income while applying for loans before their show debuted in 2009, then hiding their fortunes in a bankruptcy filing after their first season aired. The couple filed for bankruptcy in 2009 and claimed they owed $11 million, including $2.2 million in mortgages, $13,000 to Neiman Marcus and Nordstrom and nearly $12,000 to a fertility clinic, according to court documents.

On Tuesday, they admitted submitting fraudulent mortgage and loan applications and fabricating tax returns and W-2 forms.

Teresa Giudice has parlayed her fame into cookbooks and specialty food, drink and hair care product lines. On the show, she is known for her expensive tastes and combative relationship with her brother and sister-in-law. She has continued to work on the show while she has been under indictment and plans to continue until her sentencing, Klingeman said.

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fboutup March 05 2014 at 5:01 PM

Mail fraud, wire fraud and bankruptcy fraud. Then it is stated they admit committing tax fraud and that is not one of the charges. So they are thinking 2 to 4 years jail time. News flash - tax fraud has no statute of limitations and the civil penalty will almost double the amount of tax owed - and it is not dischargeable in bankruptcy (even if they try bankruptcy fraud again when they get out of jail. So they are basically impoverished for life. Enjoy slime balls.

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kohel3of3 March 05 2014 at 8:39 AM

Whhaahhh!!! He might get deported to Italy. LOL better than staying in Jersey. Those kids will be without both parents. Sad, but maybe they will learn to behave under someone elses care, because they are so disrespectful to their mother. Turn off the lights, eventually you get caught...even in the dark.

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mame521 March 05 2014 at 9:38 AM

I hope they get maximum time - so sick of the arrogance & stupidity -

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1 reply
It's Nvr 2 Late mame521 March 05 2014 at 10:10 AM

Sadly, it is great fodder for TV "Reality Shows" that are based nowhere in fact or consciousness. "If it bleeds it leads and if it's trash likely a #1 seller in America---no only a testament to the "actors", also the consumers

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shakesu March 05 2014 at 9:38 AM

They deserve to be punished. They are only remorseful because they got caught. They had to play the role and act like they were so rich when they were scamming everyone. I hope your fancy clothes and all your cosmetic surgey was worth it !!!!!!! She is no role model for her children. They are both a disgrace. There is no reason to do something like this.

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gbny224 March 05 2014 at 8:50 AM

Put them in jail to learn their lesson.....don't f### with the gov't! The ball$ on some people, making millions and then trying to hide their $$$ in order to file for BK, while living in a multi million dollar estate and showing the world on TV what kind of pigs they really are.

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vickie March 05 2014 at 8:38 AM

YO, how bout paying back some, ALL they stole? She's still making money, and I bet he is too. The light sentencing wouldn't be so bad if there is a SUBSTANCIAL penalty for ripping everyone off! Pay what you owe! Pay court cost! Pay for the luxuries you stole!!!! THIEVES! No better than petty crooks....WORSE!!!!

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drscot March 05 2014 at 8:50 AM

After Guido does his time he should be deported. I'm sure they reality shows in Italy he can apply for and his loving sweet wife can join him. Nobody can think anything about this guy is legit. One less bum to worry about.

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1 reply
ltjcamaro drscot March 05 2014 at 9:38 AM


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racurrry March 05 2014 at 9:01 AM

Get all the money they owe plus fines, spend 5 years in jail and then deport the, the, the, POS !

Flag Reply +3 rate up
kmcewan007 March 05 2014 at 8:35 AM


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sheeplesuks March 05 2014 at 8:18 AM

dumb to live in the house they live in with all the jewelry and driving the range rover etc and be filing for bankruptcy at the same time. when it's all documented on tv you have little recourse

Flag Reply +9 rate up
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