Joe Giudice has finally been released from prison on March 14, after serving 3 years behind bars for bankruptcy fraud. But, he won’t enjoy a minute of freedom, yet. The ‘RHONJ’ star is in the custody of ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement), according to a new report.
Joe Giudice, 46, is out of prison, but he’s still not free. On March 14, the former Real Housewives of New Jersey star was released from the Allentown, Pennsylvania facility where he has been serving just under three years for bankruptcy fraud. But Teresa Giudice’s husband has been put into ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement) custody, as he faces deportation to his native Italy, according to TMZ. Joe is officially in ICE custody at an unknown location where he will remain until his court date, in which he will have a chance to appeal deportation, ICE officials tell the site. His court date is unknown at this time.
“As standard practice, ICE, through its Criminal Alien Program (CAP) works with the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) to identify foreign-born nationals who are amenable to removal,” an ICE official tells HollywoodLife. “These aliens are placed in removal proceedings while serving their criminal sentences in order to reduce ICE detention costs and expedite removals once BOP transfers are completed.” The official refuses to say exactly when Joe will be deported, noting instead, “For operational security, ICE does not discuss specific transfer arrangements.”
The latest development in his legal case is not unexpected as fans of RHONJ already know. Born in Saronno, Italy, Joe has lived in the United States since he was a little boy. He never obtained U.S. citizenship and, as a result, because he has been convicted of a felony he can legally be deported. That’s a ruling that Judge John Ellington made during a court hearing in York, Pennsylvania in October 2018. “Based upon the law, I find you deplorable and ineligible for any kind of relief,” the judge told Joe, who was convicted of mail, wire and bankruptcy fraud in 2014.
Although the father-of-four has appealed the decision, a legal expert told HollywoodLife that the future looks grim for Teresa’s husband. “There will most likely be an immigration hold. He will be transported to ICE. He will then be processed through something called ‘deportation and removal proceedings,’” Peter G. Aziz, New Jersey State Criminal Attorney told us EXCLUSIVELY.
If Joe is sent back to Italy, Teresa has already made it clear that she won’t follow him and she will likely divorce him. “I mean, unless my kids say, ‘Mommy, I want to move to Italy,’” she told Bravo star Andy Cohen on the March 6 RHONJ reunion show. The Giudices have four girls – Gia, 18, Gabriella, 15, Milania, 14, and Audriana, 10. “But you know, Gia’s going to college next year,” she added, “I haven’t spoken to Milania or Audriana about it, we haven’t gotten there yet, and Gabriella already voiced her opinion to me – she was like, ‘That would be so hard for me Mommy.’ She doesn’t speak the language. She was like, ‘That would kill me even more.’ It’s like starting a whole new life. And they’ve been through so much already.” In the meantime, Teresa and the girls can visit Joe while he is in ICE custody. “Mr. Guidice’s family will be allowed to visit him upon his transfer to ICE custody,” an official told HollywoodLife on March 13.
As for how Teresa and Joe’s relationship could possibly survive across two continents, she said, “So, I mean, I’m not doing a long distance relationship. I want somebody with me every day, and I know exactly what happens [in open relationships]. I’m sure he’ll be with other women – it happens. So if we do the long distance thing, it’s not going to work. I’ll be like, ‘Bye bye.’”