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'Housewives' stars plead not guilty to fraud charges

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By HLNtv.com Staff

(CNN) -- Husband-and-wife stars of the popular reality TV show "The Real Housewives of New Jersey" pleaded not guilty Wednesday to a slew of federal fraud charges.

Their trial has been scheduled for October 8.

Attorneys for Teresa Giudice, 41, and Giuseppe "Joe" Giudice, 43, spoke Wednesday afternoon before the couple made their second court appearance.

Attorney Miles Feinstein said the couple will not be testifying against each other in the case, which he said they expect to win.

The couple is also planning to appear on the Bravo network's live after-show following the final episode of "The Real Housewives of New Jersey," according to their lawyers.

The Giudices were indicted on 39 counts, including conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, bank fraud, making false statements on loan applications, and bankruptcy fraud.

Authorities say the Giudices exaggerated their income while applying for loans before "The Real Housewives of New Jersey" debuted in 2009. The indictment says the couple then hid their fortunes while filing for bankruptcy.

The indictment also charges Giuseppe Giudice with failure to file tax returns for tax years 2004 through 2008, during which time he allegedly earned nearly $1 million.

During their court appearance on July 30, the Giudices were released on $500,000 bond each, along with several restrictions: They had to surrender their passports, and they weren't allowed to leave New York or New Jersey until their next hearing, which happened Wednesday. The judge is now allowing the couple to travel out of the area with a three-day notice.

Teresa Giudice released a statement to HLN after being charged, saying she plans to stand by her man throughout the ordeal. "Today is a most difficult day for our family. I support Joe and, as a wonderful husband and father, I know he wants only the best for our lovely daughters and me. I am committed to my family and intend to maintain our lives in the best way possible, which includes continuing my career. As a result, I am hopeful that we will resolve this matter with the Government as quickly as possible."

The prosecuting attorney has also said authorities may pursue immigration charges against Giuseppe Giudice, who is an Italian citizen. He could face deportation.

If convicted, the couple faces up to 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine.

Bravo, the network that airs "The Real Housewives of New Jersey," told HLN it has no comment on the charges or the hearing.

The-CNN-Wire
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