When Joe Giudice served three years in federal prison for bankruptcy fraud, there were times when his fellow inmates would let him know that Real Housewives of New Jersey was on TV. And, he says that he would “watch a little bit here and there.” But, there was one scene that was so “gut-wrenching,” he had to look away.
In previously unseen footage from the RHONJ special Joe and Teresa: Unlocked, Joe explained to host Andy Cohen that when he was at the Federal Correctional Institution, Fort Dix in New Jersey – the first prison he went to – there was a guy named Jack who loved Bravo, so the channel was always on.
But, when he was transferred to the Federal Correctional Institution in Allenwood, Pennsylvania, there wasn’t anyone who watched the channel regularly. But, he was still able to catch up on clips here and there, even though Bravo wasn’t on as much as it was at Fort Dix. Joe also revealed that he would catch things about his family in magazines.
When Cohen asked him why he didn’t make a point to watch his family on TV, Joe explained that it was just too painful. And, there was one scene in particular that he had to look away from.
“You know, it was actually painful to watch them on television,” said Joe. “It was actually sad. I saw the one, I remember the one episode where my daughter [Milania] was waving through the window when I was leaving to go to Fort Dix, and that was like gut-wrenching. I couldn’t even watch that.”
It’s been a difficult four years for the Giudice family, but Joe finally reunited with his wife Teresa and his four daughters Gia, Gabriella, Milania, and Audriana last week in Salerno, Italy, where he has been living since his release from ICE custody.
Joe is still waiting for the final decision in his deportation case, and it’s expected to come this month. If the ruling is in his favor, Joe will be allowed to return home to New Jersey and be with his family. However, if the court decides against him, Joe will not legally be allowed back into the United States.
During their four-day reunion, everyone from the family documented the trip on Instagram. And, when they left the country, Gia wrote “Love you see you soon” in the caption of a pic she posted of her and her father.
New episodes of Real Housewives of New Jersey air Wednesday nights on Bravo.