Todd Chrisley and Julie Chrisley — the stars of the long-running USA Network reality show Chrisley Knows Best — were sentenced to on Monday evening to lengthy terms in federal prison.
On November 21, Judge Eleanor Ross sentenced Tod to 12 years in prison, while Julie was sentenced to seven behind bars.
The spouses will need to serve 16 months of probation as well.
The couple, who have been married since 1996, were engulfed in a weeks-long trial that ended in June when they were convicted on tax evasion, bank fraud and conspiring to defraud the IRS.
Prosecutors alleged at the time that the wealthy reality stars used falsified documents to obtain $30 million in bank loans… and then defaulted on more than $20 million in debt when Todd Chrisley declared bankruptcy in 2012.
They also concealed millions of dollars from the IRS that they had earned from the aforementioned program.
Todd has denied these accusations at every opportunity.
He’s claimed that his and Julie’s former employee Mark Braddock was trying to get “revenge” on them, stating back in 2019:
“He took a bunch of his phony documents to the U.S. Attorney’s office and told them we had committed all kinds of financial crimes, like tax evasion and bank fraud.
“that got their attention all right, but once we had a chance to explain who he was and what he’d done to us, they realized it was all a bunch of nonsense and they sent him on his way.
“[He] persuaded a different set of investigators at the U.S. Attorney’s office not only to reopen the case but also to grant him immunity from prosecution for his own crimes and bring charges against us.”
Alas, a jury did not buy this story.
In various podcasts and interviews since his conviction, Todd has said he has faith in God — and continued to proclaim his innocence.
Prosecutors, meanwhile, wrote in a memo ahead of Monday’s hearing that the Chrisleys flaunted their status on their television show while stiffing creditors, including service workers and a contractor who was not paid for work on the couple’s house.
“Todd and Julie Chrisley are career swindlers who have made a living by jumping from one fraud scheme to another, lying to banks, stiffing vendors and evading taxes at every corner,” the prosecutors wrote.
“Their ’empire’ was built upon the backs of defrauded community banks that collapsed while Todd Chrisley used the stolen money to fly to Los Angeles for bi-weekly haircuts.”
After the jury reached a verdict this summer, the couple’s attorney said he was “disappointed” and noted that “an appeal is planned.”
This same defense lawyer, Bruce Morris, sought a reduced sentence, arguing in court that the delinquent taxes have since been paid and that many people rely on him for their income, including those employed on Chrisley Knows Best and its various spinoff shows.
“The scores of people who are employed in the production and filming of the Chrisley television shows will be harmed when he is incarcerated,” Morris wrote.
In essence, this argument boils down to a claim that Todd Chrisley is too famous to go to jail.
It’s unclear just when Todd will need to check into prison.
A handful of Chrisley Knows Best Season 10 episodes have already been filmed, however, and are expected to air some time in 2023.
Savannah Chrisley, who has stood by her dad throughout his legal ordeal, quoted a pastor on Instagram in the wake of this sentencing, posting the following online:
Noah didn’t stop building the ark to explain himself to everyone who doubted and hated on him. Keep building your ark. The rain will do the talking.