Todd and Julie Chrisley – the stars of the hit reality TV show "Chrisley Knows Best" – were charged on Tuesday with 12 charges, accusing them of tax evasion and fraud.
Citizens of Georgia were charged in the northern district of the state, with their accountant, Peter Tarantino.
Their indictment was announced in a press release.
"Todd and Julie Chrisley are accused not only of defrauding a number of banks by fraudulently getting millions of dollars in loans, but also of having supposedly cheated taxpayers by avoiding paying federal taxes." on the money earned, "said US Attorney Byung J." BJay "Pak.
"Celebrities face the same justice as everyone else," he added. "These are serious federal charges and they will have their day in court."
Todd, 50, was apparently aware of the impending indictment Monday night, and posted it on Instagram.
"I've never talked about it publicly before, but Julie, my family and I and the whole family have had a cloud over the past seven years," he said.
The Tennessee transplant later charged an unidentified man with spying family and submitting false documents to the federal authorities in order to bring the couple behind bars.
"He illegally inserted our home here," Todd wrote. "Needless to say, we fired the guy and sued him – and that's when the real problems started. In revenge, he gave the US Attorney's Office several of his fake documents and told them that we had committed all kinds of financial crimes, such as tax evasion and bank fraud. Their attention was drawn, but once we had the opportunity to explain who he was and what he did to us, they realized it was a lot of nonsense and they sent it on his way.
The Chrisley would have been the subject of an investigation for tax evasion and illegal residency applications in 2017. Todd had filed the bankruptcy filing in Chapter 7 five years earlier – scoring $ 4.2 million assets and $ 49.9 million in debt.
"He secured a loan for real estate development and it failed," his lawyer, Robert Furr, told People magazine. "He was up to $ 30 million. If that had not happened, he would have been well financially. "
According to the prosecutors, the Chrisley conspired to defraud "many banks by providing them with false information, such as personal financial statements containing false information and bank statements made when requesting and receiving millions of dollars worth of money. loans ".
After that, the couple would have used "a large part of the product for their personal benefit".
"In 2014, two years after the end of the so-called bank fraud scheme, Todd and Julie Chrisley reportedly used bank statements and a credit report that had been physically cut and glued or glued together to apply for and obtain a lease for a home. in California. ", Said the prosecutor in Monday's press release.
They pointed out that in February 2017, Todd had publicly declared on a national radio show: "Obviously, the federal government likes my tax returns because I pay between $ 750,000 and $ 1 million every year , so the federal government has no problem with my taxes. "
However, "prosecutors have stated that Todd and Julie Chrisley have not filed their tax returns in a timely manner for the 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 tax years, nor paid their federal taxes promptly".
"Instead, the Chrisley and Tarantino would have taken steps to hamper the IRS's collection efforts, including hiding income, lying to third parties about their tax returns and – in the case of Tarantino – lie to the FBI and special agents of the IRS-CI, "said the United States. Office of the Prosecutor.
Todd denied any wrongdoing to his GI position Monday night.
"I tell you all this now because we have nothing to hide and we have done nothing to be ashamed," he said. "Not only do we know that we have done nothing wrong, but we have a ton of hard evidence and many corroborating witnesses who prove it."
Representatives of NBCUniversal, the parent company of USA Network – which aired seven seasons of "Chrisley Knows Best" – declined to comment on Tuesday's indictment. The show is currently not in production.