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Todd and Julie Chrisley plan to appeal convictions and sentences, attorney says

Jonah Valdez, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Entertainment News

An attorney representing Todd and Julie Chrisley said the reality stars plan to appeal their federal prison sentences and convictions for tax evasion and bank fraud.

Alex Little, family attorney for the husband-and-wife stars of USA Network's "Chrisley Knows Best," said prosecutors misled jurors about the Chrisleys not paying their taxes and relied on illegally obtained evidence throughout the trial.

"Their trial was marred by serious and repeated errors, including the government lying to jurors about what taxes the couple paid," Little said in a statement. "Based on these issues, we are optimistic about the road ahead."

U.S. District Judge Eleanor Ross sentenced Todd Chrisley on Monday to 12 years in prison and 16 months probation and his wife, Julie Chrisley, to seven years in prison and 16 months probation.

Ross had ordered the Chrisleys to serve their prison terms in Florida facilities — the minimum-security Federal Prison Camp in Pensacola for Todd and low-security Federal Correctional Institution in Tallahassee for Julie — to allow their children time to visit both parents within a single day, said criminal defense attorney Bruce Morris, who represented the couple during trial.

However, after the sentencing hearing Monday, both Chrisleys were allowed to return home, where they currently remain. They were ordered to voluntarily surrender to authorities on Jan. 15, Little said.

Within the appeal, Little said, he plans to request that the Chrisleys remain free until the appellate court makes a decision. That process could take up to two years.

 

Little told the Los Angeles Times that the couple has "a good chance at winning."

"We want to be able to have the appellate court hear their appeal, which we believe presents some serious questions in the conviction," Little said.

Both Chrisleys were charged in 2019 with conspiracy to commit bank fraud, bank fraud, conspiracy to defraud the United States and tax fraud. Julie Chrisley was also charged with wire fraud and obstruction of justice. They were found guilty on all charges in June.

Prosecutors alleged that the Chrisleys submitted fake documents to banks when applying for loans to fund their expensive lifestyle. They said Julie Chrisley also submitted a false credit report and fake bank statements when trying to rent a house in California, and that the couple then refused to pay rent a few months after they started using the home.

"Yesterday was a difficult day for the Chrisley family," Little's statement continued. "But Todd and Julie are people of faith, and that faith gives them strength as they appeal their convictions."

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