updated 12/21/2011 AT 11:35 AM ET
•originally published 12/21/2011 AT 11:55 AM ET
There’s trouble brewing this Christmas for Real Housewives of New Jersey stars Teresa and Joe Giudice.
On Tuesday, a grand jury in Passaic County, N.J., handed down a two-count indictment against Joe Giudice, a former developer. The charge includes one count of wrongfully using identifying information of another, punishable by up to 10 years in prison, and one count of impersonation, which can carry up to 18 months in prison.
The indictment alleges that last year, Giudice used his brother Pietro Giudice’s information, including a marriage and birth certificate, to obtain a driver’s license at the Paterson, N.J., department of motor vehicles. His own license had been suspended at that time following a DUI.
In an interview last spring, Joe, 40, denied any wrongdoing, saying that he and his wife, who also weathered a contentious bankruptcy before withdrawing the claim earlier this year, were targets because of their notoriety from the Bravo reality show.
“They didn’t even catch me driving,” he said at the time. “They came to my house and said you’re driving with your brother’s license and then they got me with some kind of stupid charge.”
Calls to a lawyer for Joe were not immediately returned. A rep for Teresa, 39, declined to comment at this time.