Joe And Teresa Giudice Speak Out About Their Prison Sentences On WWHL

Watch What Happens Live - Season 11

Teresa Giudice and Joe Giudice spoke out for the first time since their prison sentences were handed down on Thursday.  The Real Housewives of New Jersey stars sat down with Andy Cohen for a special edition of Watch What Happens Live.  And let me summarize it for you: Teresa thinks she’s a victim in this, y’all!  A VICTIM.  Nope, she hasn’t learned a single lesson.

Andy opens the show trying to keep the twinkle out of his eye recapping the Giudices’ federal prison sentences: Joe will sit for 41 months and Teresa for 15 months.  He says that he wishes he were seeing them under happier circumstances and the mood is grim, as expected.  Andy starts off asking how they’re doing.  Teresa says she feels like she’s numb and things feel surreal.  “All I keep thinking about is my daughters.” 

Andy recaps “You plead guilty to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, bankruptcy fraud by concealment of assets, bankruptcy fraud by false oaths and bankruptcy fraud by false declarations.  Joe, you also plead guilty for failing to file a tax return in 2004.  What was your reaction when you heard, both of you, when you heard the sentences?” 

Joe says “It was devastating.”  Teresa is at a loss for words but says she’s still numb.  Joe says “I actually felt like I got hit in the back of the neck with a bat.”  Joe says that he does feel his sentence was a little high, he didn’t think he was going to get that much.  “It is what it is.”  

Andy asks Teresa her reaction to her sentence, especially since there was so much speculation that she wouldn’t serve at all.  She’s again unable to find words for a minute and then says “I was so nervous yesterday that I was shaking.”  She shares that her nerves were so shot at one point she couldn’t even feel her fingers and she couldn’t move her hands.  She says she’s had sleepless night and of course she was “shocked” since it was “very unexpected.”  She adds “I really don’t know what to say.” 

Andy asks her about her statement to the Judge about it being time for her to wake up – was she in denial?  Teresa says “I do need to read things before I sign them, I do need to understand things before I sign them. I’m a trustworthy person and sometimes I take what other people say and I just believe them and trust them and I can’t do that anymore.”  “I need to fully understand something or fully read it or find a lawyer that can help me.”  So clearly she STILL thinks she’s the victim here. 

Andy asks if she’s depressed and if she’s sought help for it.  “I am scared.  What depresses me is not being there for my daughters.  I’ve been there since they were born. I can’t even imagine not being there. Like, I’m their mom, they need me.  It’s not the same with a father.  A mom is a mom.”

On why she accepted a plea deal that could give her up to 27 months in prison, she says “I didn’t understand that part.”  Is she serious right now?  Her attorney HAD to go over that with her at great length. UGH.  She is not learning a single thing from this mess.  NOT.A.THING.  

Andy asks her, “did your lawyer not tell you what that meant?”  Teresa is adamant that she didn’t fully understand him.  He asks what Teresa thought would happen after she accepted the plea deal.  “I don’t know. I thought my lawyer was going to fight for me. I don’t know.  That’s why you hire an attorney.  You put it in their hands.”  She says that she followed all of their directions, whatever was needed.  I’m sure her lawyer is THRILLED to hear this. 

Andy asks about all of the omissions in their paperwork, especially with having such a huge team of attorneys.  Andy says it seems that played a big part in why they got such tough sentences.  “That’s why I was shocked.  Believe me, whatever I needed to do, I would do.”  Andy asks what they had to say to their lawyers after court (since they were so bad at filing all the proper paperwork, apparently).  Teresa says they just left court and didn’t talk to their attorneys!! “The Judge made her decision, it was done.” 

Joe says he didn’t think Teresa would get jail time. They try to explain why they took the plea deal because if they went to trial they could’ve wound up serving 10 years for just one count.  Joe says he expected his own jail time, but was surprised at Teresa’s.  “I even took all blame and whatever.  I took full responsibility because she really had no part in my businesses.”

Andy tries to understand how this happened – he asks if she was just signing whatever was handed to her or….?  She says “this was a long time ago. This was pre-Housewives.  Whatever Joe told me to sign, I signed.”  Andy asks Joe if he knew what he was asking Teresa to sign.  He shrugs and says ‘just whatever the bank gave me for her to sign.”    Andy says “But you were taking out false loans.”  Joe says “Whatever, I was taking out false loans.”  Andy slips in a comment about the false w-2’s but Joe doesn’t answer that.  “They were handing me the paperwork.  She had better credit. So that’s why we used her.  She never even came to closings.  She might have signed one document for our home and that’s about it. “

How would you explain what you did? Andy wants to know.  “I would get the paperwork and sign it.”  “There were illegal things as far as tax returns and stuff like that, yes.”  Why did they do it? Did they need the money?  Was it a matter of keeping up with the Joneses?  Teresa says “No, that’s what the Judge kept saying.”

Andy says “look, you have a reputation of loving fine things. There was a time when that seemed like it meant a lot to you.  You loved fine things, you didn’t want to live in a house that someone else lived in.”  Teresa interrupts and says “and that I regret. I didn’t mean it that way. I would buy a used home.”

Andy asks Joe “if you wanted to get more money to satisfy Teresa or build more or get more”  they interrupt and say no way, ‘Joe’s not like that.’  She mumbles about him being a simple man and says she’s working and if she wants something she’ll go buy it but she’s NOT trying to keep up with the Joneses.  “I don’t spend money that I don’t have.”  Excuse me while I roll around on the floor laughing in complete hysterics for a moment.  Then why the hell were you trying to get out of paying back over THIRTEEN million dollars in debts??!!! 

Cohen brings up Teresa carrying around a $3,000 purse while she was ‘house hunting’ on a recent episode.  “I didn’t pay $3,000 for that. So right there, I don’t pay retail for my things. When you’re on a TV show, people give you things at a discounted price or they send things to you. ”  They then get into a little pissing match about paying taxes on those free things (Andy says he paid taxes on his free suit) and Teresa says “I always pay my taxes.” 

Andy then asks Teresa what her night was like on Thursday after hearing her sentence.  She says the whole family was there.  “It was just hard. Just walking in.  I couldn’t wait to see my daughters. That’s the first thing I wanted to see was my daughters and my parents.  I saw my mom, she started crying. ”  She told her mom not to cry and to be strong for her. She says her mom couldn’t believe it. 

How did Gia get the news of the sentencing? “I came home, I told her.  She got upset.  We were both there talking to her.”  What did she say? “‘It’s gonna be okay.’  She was being strong for me.  She said ‘mommy, don’t worry about it, I’ll be there to help daddy with the girls. That will make me a better mom, it’ll prepare me for when I’m a mom’ and it broke my heart when she said that.”   She adds, “Today I got a call from the guidance counselor and she told me that she met with Gia and they’re going to take her out of gym once a week to talk to her and see how she’s doing.”  Teresa says the one person Gia was worried about was her.  

She says “My husband is a great father, a great husband, but I do everything for my daughters.  Like everything.  I drive them everywhere.  I do everything with them, I’m old school. When I ask Joe to do something he does it, but pretty much I’m the one that’s hands on.  So I said to my husband “Just please take care of our daughters.  That’s all I ask. Please just do what I do.” 

Joe on being alone with the girls come January, “It’s gonna be a lot of work. But they’re my daughters and I gotta do what I gotta do.  I guess I’m gonna be the Housewife.”

Andy asks what they’ve told the other girls.  “Nothing yet. They don’t know anything.”  Joe chimes in to say that Milania asked him if he had something to say to her and so he thinks she does know something’s up.

Andy says “she’s in third grade and she went to school today (Friday),don’t you think she’ll hear something at school?”  Teresa says “no, I don’t think so.”   Joe thinks Gabriella knows something is up.  Gee, you think?  You have a house full of people crying and talking about the court case…how do the girls NOT know?   But Joe says the girls did ask why everyone was over because they hadn’t been since his dad passed away.  He immediately tears up and can’t speak for a minute. 

Teresa doesn’t know what she’s going to say yet to her girls.  She does want Joe to come with girls to see her.  She says she’s grateful to the judge because she could’ve taken them to prison right away. And they’re grateful for the staggered sentences.  “A lot of what she said yesterday really hit home and it bothered me.  And from everything that she said, I’m gonna take it and become a better person.”

Andy asks Joe if he’s scared at the idea of going to jail and he says he would’ve been a lot happier if it was just him going.  “I’m more scared for my wife than me.  If you stick me with a knife, I probably wouldn’t even feel it.”  What scares him about Tre going?  “I don’t want her to go to jail.  She don’t deserve to go.” 

Andy asks Teresa, as a person who likes to get her hair and makeup done how she’s going to deal with prison.  “I’m going to do fine. I don’t care about that, I don’t care about it.  I’ll slick my hair back and go about my day.”  Her biggest fear about prison “I just think about my daughters. That’s all I think about. I just want to make sure my daughters are okay.  I just want him to be with them all the time. I want to talk to my daughters every day, I want him to bring them to me.”  She says Joe promised to come twice a week and she says not to promise that, but to be sure to come once a week because the girls have busy schedules. She hopes Joe can keep up with their schedules. 

Andy asks if she’s worried about losing her temper in prison.  “No, not at all.”  Andy says “you pushed me at that reunion.” Hah! Andy can’t resist the shade.  “I’ve grown since then. I’m not that same person.”  She tells Andy that no one can push her buttons anymore. She’s numb to it all. 

Stay tuned Thursday for Part 2 of the interview!   They’re going to dish on deportation, Teresa’s comments about the show being scripted and more. 


 You MUST check this out.  It’s HILARIOUS and we can alllll relate after waiting all day on Thursday for the sentencing! 

Watch What Happens Live - Season 11

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