A Justice Department board has denied an appeal by reality-TV star Joe Giudice, clearing the way for the financial felon to be deported to his ancestral Italy.
"We are extremely disappointed that the Board of Immigration Appeals has denied Mr. Giudice's appeal," Giudice family attorney James J. Leonard Jr. said in a statement to Newsday. "We have filed a stay with the Third Circuit Court of Appeals and will continue to fight to keep Mr. Giudice in the United States, the only country he knows, and reunite him with his wife and four daughters."
The husband of "The Real Housewives of New Jersey" star Teresa Giudice, 46, the 48-year-old Joe Giudice was convicted of mail and bankruptcy fraud and other charges in 2014, and served a 41-month prison sentence that ended last month. Because he is not U.S. citizen -- he was born Giuseppe Giudice in Saronno, Italy, though raised in New Jersey since age 1 -- the convictions brought the possibility of deportation, and in October, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) ordered his removal from the country.
Giudice's attorney filed an appeal with the proscribed 30 days, and it was this appeal that was denied.
In March 2014, Joe and Teresa Giudice each pleaded guilty to one count of mail and wire fraud and three counts of bankruptcy fraud. Joe additionally pleaded guilty to one count of failing to file a tax return. The two, who married on Oct. 23, 1999, served their sentences consecutively so that one could be home for their four children, daughters Gia, now 18, Gabriella, 14, Milania, 13, and Audriana, 9.
After Teresa Giudice completed her 15-month sentence in February 2016, Joe Giudice the following month entered the federal prison in Fort Dix, New Jersey. In November 2017, he was ordered transferred to a penitentiary in Allenwood, Pennsylvania, for immigration hearings, which are prohibited at Fort Dix. When his sentence ended on March 14, he was transferred to ICE's Clinton County Correctional Facility in McElhattan, Pennsylvania.
If the deportation goes through, he will be going to Italy alone, Teresa Giudice, in a preview video for a "Housewives of New Jersey" reunion show, said, "I'm not doing a long-distance relationship. I'm not doing it," telling "Watch What Happens Live" host Andy Cohen that "I want somebody with me every day."
She also doubted her husband's faithfulness. "I know exactly what happens — I'm sure he'll be with other women. It happens" She concluded that, "We do the long-distance thing, it’s not going to work. I’d be like, 'Bye-bye.'"
She did not comment Thursday on social media.