Abby Lee Miller, “Dance Moms” star, can end up in prison for five years and face a penalty of $5 million. A Pittsburgh grand jury charged on Tuesday the reality star with 20 counts of fraud. If found guilty, she will be behind bars.
U.S. Attorney David J. Hickton mentioned Wednesday, “Criminal prosecution is appropriate when debtors corrupt the bankruptcy process through deceit and lies before the court.” Miller allegedly hid $755,000 of earnings from the Lifetime reality series produced by Collins Avenue Production.
Miller, 50, is charged for bankruptcy fraud, bankruptcy false declaration, and concealment of bankruptcy assets. This follows her 2010 Chapter 11 petition to reorganize her dance studio business she was playing a shell game.
The indictment also mentioned, “It was further a part of the scheme and artifice to defraud that in order to conceal her TV show income, Miller directed Collins Avenue to pay approximately $51,800 of Miller’s TV show talent fees to her mother, Maryen Miller.”
The charges against her can draw a fine of $250,000 each, making the total $5 million if she is found guilty for each of them. Her crime can become more severe as she not only hidden her income but instructed others to do the same through email.
On the other hand, Robert Ridge, the lawyer of Abby Lee Miller, mentioned that she filed a bankruptcy petition to save her studio and paid her creditors an agreed amount. Miller has not entered a plea yet but her lawyer said they will review the indictment and respond accordingly.
The bankruptcy judge became suspicious of Miller’s claim while surfing through reality shows. The judge said during a court hearing in 2013, “I realized there is a lot of money coming into this plan, this case, and it hasn’t been disclosed.”
“Dance Moms” star Abby Miller’s arraignment is set on Nov. 5 in U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh.