The Real Housewives of New Jersey
star Teresa Giudice's husband Joe Giudice has rejected a plea bargain that would have sent him to prison, choosing instead to stand trial on the charges of obtaining a false driver's license, according to the New Jersey Record
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"Juicy Joe" was indicted in December
after using his brother Pietro Giudice's birth and marriage certificates to obtain a faulty license after his license was suspended as a result of a DUI arrest in 2010.
The plea offer that Joe rejected was for five years in state prison, or five years of "going away" as Teresa would prefer to call it. Instead, Joe and his attorney will prepare for a trial set for October 1.
Obtaining a false driver's license is a very serious offense and Joe could face up to ten years in prison if convicted, twice as much time as was offered in the plea bargain. The Assistant Prosecutor Jay McCann said that if he had taken the plea bargain, because of his relatively clean record with no other serious offenses, Joe may have been eligible for probation.
There are also speculations by Joe's defense that the state is taking a tough approach to Joe's case because of his celebrity status. But the fact that Joe showed up late to his court appearance probably isn't helping his case either.
The Prosecutor, however, is very assuring that his "celebrity" has nothing to do with the case, and that a "driver's license is considered the most secure document and the one the state relies upon most to prove identity" and "any tampering with the integrity of the driver's license is a serious offense."
Teresa did not attend her husband's court appearance, claiming to stay at home so as not to "create a media circus."
Only the outcome of his October trial will tell if Joe was right to reject the plea deal. If not, he might be "going away" for a long time. Gina PusateriContributing Writer(Image courtesy of NorthJersey.com)