Joe Giudice Says the Chrisleys Were 'Crucified' in Tax Fraud Trial After Serving His Own Prison Time

Joe Giudice said Todd and Julie Chrisley should "have taken the plea" during their recent tax fraud trial: "You can't go to trial against the feds. You can't do it. You gonna lose"

Joe Giudice is opening up about Todd and Julie Chrisley's tax fraud sentencing — and he's not holding back.

Joe — who was previously arrested and jailed for bankruptcy fraud — shared his thoughts on the similarities between his case and that of the Chrisleys on the most recent episode of his ex-wife, Teresa Giudice, and Melissa Pfeister's Namaste B$tches podcast.

"I mean, these people did the same, exact thing we did, that I did — not Teresa, me," Joe, 50, told the hosts. "It was probably, I say, 90 percent of the world does, the U.S. does — did — during the times, but they targeted us, and now these people here did the same exact thing, same exact charges."

Joe was sentenced to a 41-month prison sentence after pleading guilty for mail, wire and bankruptcy fraud in October 2014. Teresa, 50, was also found guilty of fraud charges and sentenced to 15 months in jail.

Meanwhile, Todd, 53, and Julie, 49, were convicted of conspiracy to commit bank fraud, conspiracy to defraud the United States and tax fraud in June 2022. Julie was also found guilty of wire fraud. At their November sentencing, Todd received a 12-year prison sentence along with 16 months probation, while Julie was given seven years in prison and a 16-month probation.

The couple has continued to deny the charges, and plan to appeal their sentencing.

Joe Giudice Weighs In on Chrisleys' Tax Fraud Sentencing 20191125_90
Joe Giudice and the Chrisleys. getty (2)

Speaking about the Chrisleys' trial and outcome on the podcast, Joe said, "They would've probably got a slap on the wrist, they would've gone to prison, maybe the wife would've gone to prison same [amount of] time as Teresa, if that. And the guy would've probably got the same amount I got, which he would've been out in, you know, 17 months, 'cause he could've done the drug program and he's a citizen and this and that, so he would've been out 16 months, 17 months."

"But being that he went to trial, OK? They crucified him, all right?" Joe continued. "They give you double time."

NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - NOVEMBER 20: Julie Chrisley (L) and Todd Chrisley attend the grand opening of E3 Chophouse Nashville on November 20, 2019 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Danielle Del Valle/Getty Images for E3 Chophouse Nashville)
Julie and Todd Chrisley. Danielle Del Valle/Getty for E3 Chophouse Nashville

Joe added that he believed the big difference between the cases and their varying lengths of sentences was due to the fact he and Teresa took plea deals.

"I'm assuming they probably gave him a plea deal for, like, 48 months, something like that. Something like I got, all right? So, you get 36 months out of that, on good time and all that, and then if you get the drug programs, alcohol programs, and all that, you get even less time," he explained.

"So, you do maybe 15 months, you know, 14 months, something like that. But if he would have taken the plea... you can't go to trial against the feds. You can't do it. You gonna lose," he continued.

"We did the right thing," Joe added. "We took the plea, we licked our wounds and did what we had to do and moved on."

Following his fraud sentence, Joe was deported from America. The Italian native now lives in the Bahamas, and has since gotten divorced from Teresa after 20 years of marriage. They share four daughters: Audriana, 13, Milania, 16, Gabriella, 18, and Gia, 21.

In August 2022, Teresa got remarried to Luis Ruelas.

RELATED VIDEO: Reality TV Stars Todd and Julie Chrisley Will Serve Majority of Prison Sentences in 'Camp Environment': Expert

As for the Chrisleys, a source exclusively told PEOPLE earlier this month that "they've really been leaning into their faith to pull them through" after the sentencing.

"That said, what happened to them was horrible, to be ripped apart in court the way that they were. They feel they were targeted unfairly by the judge because he said to them multiple times, 'Just because you're on TV, doesn't mean you're going to get away with this,'" the source said, noting that the couple believed the federal judge "was making an example of them."

"They are planning on appealing so that they can right this wrong," the source added.

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The couple's attorney Alex Little of Burr & Forman LLP also confirmed to PEOPLE that the duo was continuing to be "optimistic" about the future and planning to appeal.

"Todd and Julie are people of faith, and that faith gives them strength as they appeal their convictions," Little said on Nov. 22. "Their trial was marred by serious and repeated errors, including the government lying to jurors about what taxes the couple paid. Based on these issues, we are optimistic about the road ahead."

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