UPDATE (Sept. 25, 11:46 a.m.): The Giudice family attorney James J. Leonard Jr. certified in a separate document obtained by PEOPLE that Joe “believes that his continued detention would create an extreme hardship on his family and he wishes to be released so that [he] can begin working and contributing financially to his wife and four young children, something that he has repeatedly stated he intends to do upon his release from custody.”
The original story continues below.
Joe's lawyers filed a petition asking that he be sent to Italy as he waits for a final decision regarding his pending deportation on Tuesday, September 24, according to PEOPLE. “Giving the hardship to Mr. Giudice and his family from his continued detention, the balance of irreparable harm has shift and [Joe] has asked that the stay be lifted so that he could be released from USICE custody and returned to Italy during the pendency of this case,” the request obtained by PEOPLE reads.
This doesn't mean that Joe has lost any hope that he will one day be able to go home and be with his family in New Jersey. According to the petition, Joe is still optimistic that his appeal will be granted and he will be able to stay in the United States, in which case he requests that ICE facilitate his return home, PEOPLE reports.
The news comes after a judge recently denied Joe's request to be released from ICE custody and allowed to be with wife Teresa Giudice and their four daughters — Gia, 18, Gabriella, 14, Milania, 13, Audriana, 10 — while he awaits a final decision in his deportation case.
A judge ordered that Joe be deported back to Italy, where he was born, in October 2018. His appeal of that ruling was denied in April. He has been staying in "a facility in western Pennsylvania, which houses immigration detainees" since he was released from federal prison in March after completing his 41-month prison sentence for mail, wire, and bankruptcy fraud. Joe was granted permission to stay in the U.S. in May amid his ongoing deportation case.
Teresa told Us Weekly last weekend that she and her family “are going through a really difficult time right now." “It’s a sad time with my husband and everything so we’re going to try and work it out as best we can," she shared. "The most important thing is our four daughters, so I’m hoping Joe is able to stay in the United States.”
Teresa reflects more on Joe's possible deportation in the above video exclusive for Bravo Insider.