Former reality star Michael "The Situation" Sorrentino and his brother, Marc Sorrentino, both pleaded guilty on Friday to violating federal tax laws. "The brothers allegedly also claimed costly clothes and cars as business expenses and funneled company money into personal accounts". If convicted, Mike faces up to 15 years in prison; Marc faces up to 25.
Klingeman blamed financial managers for hiding income from the IRS in 2011 and providing false information in tax returns from 2010 to 2012. Klingeman said Sorrentino "deeply regrets his failure to pay taxes" but that he "only played a minor role in the actual misconduct".
"The Situation" appeared on all six seasons of the MTV reality show, which followed the lives of rowdy housemates in a New Jersey beach town. Both also faced counts of filing false returns, each of which carries a maximum three-year sentence.
The plea agreement, which saw the brothers plead guilty to one felony charge each, avoided the much more serious charges detailed in the their 14-count indictment, including currency structuring (continually making deposits under $10,000 to avoid reporting requirements) and conspiracy.
The Sorrentinos, who grew up in Manalapan, have been free on bail since they were charged.
Former Republican Gov. Chris Christie criticized the show for promoting stereotypes, and previous year signed a bill capping the amount of state money universities can pay for speakers, after Rutgers University paid cast member Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi $32,000 in 2011. It ran from 2009 to 2012.
During the court hearing, the reality television star requested approval to travel to Florida while under probation for the filming of a "Jersey Shore" reunion show.
Real Housewives of New Jersey cast member Teresa Giudice and her husband Joe pleaded guilty in 2014 to bankruptcy fraud and submitting false loan applications to get $5 million in mortgages and construction loans.
Teresa Giudice served almost a year in prison and was freed in December 2015.