‘Chrisley Knows Best’ Stars Sentenced to Federal Prison for Bank Fraud

Chrisley Knows Best stars Todd Chrisley and his wife Julie Chrisley were sentenced Monday to a combined 19 years in federal prison for bank fraud and tax evasion.

U.S. District Judge Eleanor Ross in Atlanta handed down the sentences, giving Todd 12 years in prison, along with 16 months of probation. Julie received 7 years in prison, plus 16 months of probation, according to the Associated Press. The two were also ordered to pay a yet-to-be-determined amount for restitution.

Todd’s attorneys had argued for no more than nine years in prison, while Julie’s lawyers requested probation.

The family rose to fame with their USA Network reality series Chrisley Knows Best. The show premiered in 2014 and centered on real estate “tycoon” Todd, his lavish lifestyle and the couple’s children. The spinoff, Growing Up Chrisley, about their children Chase and Savannah Chrisley, debuted in 2019. Both shows have reportedly been canceled because of the couple’s legal woes.

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In June, a federal jury in Atlanta found Todd and Julie guilty of a multi-million dollar fraud scheme.

Prosecutors said the couple conspired to defraud community banks in the Atlanta area to obtain more than $30 million in personal loans. The pair spent the money on luxury cars, designer clothes, real estate, and travel, and obtained new loans to pay off the old loans, according to prosecutors.

Todd later filed for bankruptcy and “walked away from more than $20 million of the fraudulently obtained loans,” prosecutors said in a June press release.

The case was investigated by the FBI and the IRS. In addition to fraud, investigators found the couple “failed to file tax returns or pay any taxes for the 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016 tax years.”

The couple was indicted in 2019 and convicted three years later.

Their accountant, Peter Tarantino, was additionally found guilty of tax fraud for his role in the scheme. Prosecutors said Tarantino filed two false corporate tax returns on behalf of the Chrisleys’ company. The jury also found Julie Chrisley guilty of wire fraud and obstruction of justice.

“The Chrisleys and Tarantino knew the law was clear on taxable income and who is required to file and pay taxes,” James E. Dorsey, Special Agent in Charge of IRS-Criminal Investigation said in June. “These convictions should send a clear message regardless of your fame or notoriety, everyone will be held accountable for paying their fair share of taxes.”