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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Jersey

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Accountant For Michael ‘The Situation’ Sorrentino Admits Tax Fraud Conspiracy

NEWARK, N.J. – The former tax preparer for television personality Michael “The Situation” Sorrentino and his brother, Marc Sorrentino, today admitted filing fraudulent tax returns on their behalf, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman and Acting Assistant Attorney General Caroline D. Ciraolo of the Justice Department’s Tax Division announced. 

Gregg Mark, 51, of Spotswood, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Susan D. Wigenton in Newark federal court to an information charging him with one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

Mark, formerly an accountant at a Staten Island-based accounting firm, admitted preparing fraudulent tax returns for the Sorrentinos for tax years 2010 and 2011, during which time the Sorrentinos and their businesses – MPS Entertainment LLC and Situation Nation Inc. – received millions of dollars in income. To reduce the taxes the Sorrentinos owed, Mark caused to be prepared and filed with the IRS fraudulent business and personal tax returns. Mark admitted the Sorrentinos’ false returns defrauded the IRS out of $550,000 to $1.5 million.   

On Sept. 24, 2015, a grand jury in Newark returned a seven-count indictment charging the Sorrentinos with conspiracy to defraud the United States and filing false tax returns. Michael Sorrentino was also charged with failing to file a tax return. According to the indictment, the brothers received several million dollars in connection with Michael Sorrentino’s role as a cast member on the MTV television show “Jersey Shore” and other promotional activities. The brothers are charged with failing to report all of the income they received. They are also charged with claiming personal expenses as business expenses, including payments for luxury vehicles, high-end clothing, and making distributions – or direct payments – from the businesses to personal bank accounts.  Both have pleaded not guilty; a trial date has not yet been set.

The conspiracy charge to which Mark pleaded guilty carries a statutory maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Sentencing is scheduled for March 24, 2016.

U.S. Attorney Fishman and Acting Assistant Attorney General Ciraolo credited special agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Jonathan D. Larsen, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan W. Romankow of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Criminal Division in Newark as well as Assistant Chief Tino M. Lisella and Trial Attorneys Yael T. Epstein and Jeffrey B. Bender of the Tax Division of the U.S. Department of Justice.

Defense counsel: Jack Arseneault Esq. and John Roberts Esq., Chatham, New Jersey

Topic(s): 
Tax
Component(s): 
Press Release Number: 
15-462
Updated February 24, 2016