Days after a judge ordered that Joe will be deported to his native Italy at the end of his prison sentence, Gia, 17, is coming to her father’s defense.
The Real Housewives of New Jersey stars’ oldest child shared a video created by a man named Fred Rubino that called for an appeal of Joe’s impending deportation to his native Italy. In the video, Rubino claimed that the ruling on the father of four’s case was “racist” and “political” because Joe is Italian. .
“Spread the word, could’ve said it better myself.. ❤️🙏🏻” Gia wrote in the caption. “I love you daddy, let’s fight this! @fredrubino.”
She also shared a throwback photo to her Instagram Story of herself as a little girl holding onto Joe’s shoulders, and wrote on the image, “New post!!!! Spread the word, let’s fight.”
The former RHONJ star is currently serving out a 41-month prison sentence for mail, wire and bankruptcy fraud that began in March 2016. He is set to be released in 2019.
On Wednesday morning, a judge ruled on Joe’s order in immigration court.
“Based upon the law, I find you deportable and ineligible for any kind of relief,” the judge announced at the hearing, according to RadarOnline. “Mr. Giudice, no matter how this turns out, I wish you the best. I decided this case as a matter of law.”
Teresa was not in court, and Joe has 30 days to appeal the decision.
Even though Giudice has lived in America since he was a child, he never obtained American citizenship, and immigrants can be deported from the United States if they are convicted of “a crime of moral turpitude” or an “aggravated felony,” according to U.S. law.
“I was a year old when I came here,” he explained on The Real Housewives of New Jersey: Teresa Checks In. “My parents are citizens. My brother and sister are citizens — they were born here. I just never thought to file for citizenship.”
According to current immigration laws, Joe must have been over the age of 21 when his parents were granted citizenships. Had he been under the age of 21, he would have been granted citizenship with his parents automatically.
“I consider myself an American,” Joe said.
In fact, he confessed he’s not familiar with Italian customs and said moving would be a bit of a culture shock.
“I don’t really know the laws there. I don’t know s— there. In order for me to go there it would be like an immigrant coming here and not knowing anything here,” he said. “Besides eating pasta and making the sauce, I don’t know anything in Italy.”
Although Teresa has thus far remained silent on the ruling, a source told PEOPLE that she “never imaged Joe would really get deported.”
“This is going to break her,” the source said. “She always knew that this was a possibility, but she put it out of her head. That’s the only way she could go on living day to day.”