Why Did 'Jersey Shore's Mike 'The Situation' Sorrentino Go to Prison?
A reunion to remember. February 27's return of Jersey Shore Family Vacation — the MTV reality show's first episode in 2020! — centers around Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino being released from prison and reuniting with his MTV castmates after spending time behind bars.
"The Situation is free, baby. Life could get no better," he says in the trailer.
But while he's in positive spirits today, it wasn't that long ago that the reality star was surrendering himself to authorities at Federal Correctional Institution in Otisville, New York. The 37-year-old served eight months in jail starting in January 2019 before he was released with supervised probation, 500 hours of community service, and hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines, which he's already paid.
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Why did Mike from Jersey Shore go to prison?
The MTV star was sentenced to eight months in jail back in October 2018 after pleading guilty to tax evasion. His brother, Marc Sorrentino, also plead guilty to aiding in the preparation of a fraudulent tax return. The brothers were initially accused of hiding and failing to pay taxes on $8.9 million earned by the reality star between 2010 and 2012 — by creating companies that secretly paid expenses and hid income — and later accused of structuring and falsifying records.
"The law requires all Americans to pay our fair share of taxes," U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito said in a statement. "These defendants deliberately flouted this requirement, acting as though fame and celebrity status placed them above the law. They are not. Tax fraud is as serious as any other form of theft from the government, and the sentences imposed today should make that abundantly clear."
While Mike was released in September 2019, Marc is still serving his time in prison — the Federal Correctional Institution in Fairton, New Jersey — with an expected release date for later this year.
Today, Sorrentino couldn't be happier to put his legal drama behind him. He's now completely sober and happily married to his high school sweetheart, Lauren. "I definitely feel like I'm a changed man," he told Entertainment Tonight upon his release in 2019. "Our main goal throughout the whole process was to handle it with grace and class. Not only for ourselves but to show the young generation out there how to handle adversity and move forward and continue to be the best, even if you make mistakes."
"I am on such an awesome road and we are very excited to see what the future has to offer," he added.
Jersey Shore Family Vacation, Thursdays, 8/7c, MTV