Goodbye New Jersey, Hello Italy

Looks like Joe Giudice’s American dream has come to an end with his botched attempt at tax evasion.

News broke this morning that Joe Giudice, husband of Real Housewives of New Jersey star Teresa Giudice, will be deported back to Italy after finishing his prison sentence. In 2013, both Teresa and Joe were convicted with conspiracy to commit mail fraud, bank fraud and wire fraud, making false statements on loan applications, and bankruptcy fraud in a whopping 39 count indictment. Joe was sentenced to 41 months in prison, while Teresa was only sentenced to 15 months behind bars. Teresa served her sentence first and was released early for good behavior right before Christmas 2015, after serving 11 months. Joe began his long 41 month stay in prison in March of 2016. Joe’s longer sentence was due to his added charge of failing to file tax returns for tax years 2004-2008. A time period in which he reportedly made $1 million.

Their entire legal drama played out in front of the reality TV cameras and avid Bravo enthusiasts, such as myself, were fascinated by it. From the very beginning it was made clear that deportation was a possible punishment for Joe who was brought here as an infant and didn’t know, until his legal issues began, that he wasn’t in fact a citizen of this country. The couple share four daughters, Gia, 17, Gabriella, 14, Milania, 12 and Audriana, 9, who if deported Joe will not be allowed to visit. Although the possibility of deportation was always there, I never thought it would actually happen. I didn’t even think the two of them would be sentenced to any prison time, so if I didn’t see it coming, I can’t imagine what his family is going through.

I am really curious as to what Teresa is going to do if Joe does actually end up getting deported. Will she stay married to him and live in two different countries or move her entire life, and her children’s lives, to Italy. There is also the divorce option, which is usually the popular route among couples in the Hollywood bubble (although they don’t actually live in Hollywood, they’re in the bubble). Based on what I saw on the show last year I think she’s either going to stay married to him but continue living in New Jersey, or divorce him. The most recent season of Real Housewives of New Jersey was the first time we got to hear what Teresa really felt about her situation with Joe and we saw her get angry. In the past she put on a charade that everything was okay on her end but season 8 showed her expressing anger towards Joe and she said for the first time that it she blames him for everything that went wrong. After hearing her genuine feelings it doesn’t sound like she would be willing to uproot her and her kid’s lives.

There is still time for Teresa to make her decision about what to do considering her husband’s prison sentence is nowhere near finished. He does have the opportunity to file an appeal by early November 2018, but legal experts have been quoted saying they do not think he will be successful in overturning the immigration judge’s decision. I guess the moral of this story is don’t commit bank fraud and make sure you pay your taxes. Spending money is better than spending your life in prison.

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