Reality TV couple sentenced to prison for $30 million bank fraud
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Featured Image Credit: Sipa US / Alamy Stock Photo / WSB-TV
A couple who made their name on reality TV have been sentenced to jail time after being convicted of fraud. Here's a full recap of everything that has happened in the case to date:
Todd and Julie Chrisley were sentenced on Monday at a court in Atlanta, with Todd receiving a 12-year sentence and his wife being told she must spend the next seven years in prison.
The pair were convicted earlier this year of stealing more than $30 million through a fraud whereby they produced fake financial statements to give off the impression they were way richer than they were.
In the end, they acquired loans that prosecutors claimed were used to buy cars, travel the world, and generally live a life that they couldn’t actually afford.
The pair became well-known for their roles in Chrisley Knows Best, a USA Network TV show about real estate tycoon Todd and his family, as well as other series and projects revolving around the family.
Those shows have now been cancelled following the couple's trial.
The pair's accountant, Peter Tarantino, has also been sentenced to 36 months in prison for his role in the fraud.
Footage shown during the sentencing hearing showed the Chrisleys boasting about their extravagant lifestyle, which they were only able to live as a product of their fraud.
Assistant US Attorney Annalise Peters told the court: "Of course there is nothing bad about being rich. There is nothing wrong about making lots of money, It's the American dream."
Another bit of living that dream – she pointed out – involves paying taxes.
The Chrisleys both addressed the court at the emotional hearing to ask for leniency.
Todd asked the court to let his wife take less jail time because of their two children, Grayson and Chloe.
Julie said that her children – including their adopted daughter – would struggle without their parents around.
"To hear your 10-year-old say she doesn't want to live if their mom goes away, no child should feel that way," she said.
US District Judge Eleanor Ross said that she was left with no choice but to put both of the parents behind bars, though.
"It is heartbreaking, but it has to be burdened by the defendants," she said.
"I've never heard any acceptance of any crime, I've never really heard any admission to any wrongdoing or any remorse."
Whilst she said that she had ‘no reason to doubt that both Chrisleys have good hearts,' the judge said she ‘cannot ignore the greed and flamboyance in this case’.
In fact, both Chrisleys received sentences below the federal guidelines for sentencing on account of their age, health, and the fact that they are caring for Todd’s mother who has bowel cancer.
The pair will be allowed to serve their sentences in the same state at the judge’s recommendation.