Real Housewives of New Jersey star Teresa Giudice has already started serving her 15-month sentence in federal prison. She was brought to the Federal Correctional Institution in Danbury, Connecticut at 3 A.M. Monday.
According to Giudice’s attorney James J. Leonard Jr. who spoke to People magazine, the reality actress managed the last moments before entering prison quite well. He said her last words to him were, “I’ll be fine” and “Tell Joe and the girls I’m good”.
Leonard picked Giudice up at her mansion in Montville Township, New Jersey a little after midnight on 5th of January. He said she was upstairs when he arrived and assumed she was with her husband Joe Giudice and children, Gia, Gabriela, Milania and Audriana. The girls are aged 13, 10, 8 and 5, respectively.
After she said her goodbyes to her girls and husband, the 42-year old mom headed with Leonard to the minimum security prison in Connecticut. She was sentenced on October 2 last year after she pled guilty to fraud charges in March along with her husband.
Giudice Dodged a Media Circus
The reality star was expected to appear at the federal prison not later than 10 A.M. of January 5. However, on New Year’s Eve, she asked Leonard if she could come in earlier. According to the lawyer, Giudice did not want her children to wake up to a huge media circus outside their house on Monday.
Prison officials agreed for her surrender to happen at 3 A.M. instead of the scheduled 10 A.M. She was also allowed to use an alternative route, so they could avoid the possible media attention outside the main entrance of the correctional facility.
Her First Moments at the Facility
Upon her arrival at the prison, Giudice spent some time in the pre-processing area where she was introduced to the officials. She was also given details about her commissary account, when she could make her first phone call and how they have tried to set up a meeting with her immediate family over the weekend.
Leonard said Giudice was very happy to hear about this and to learn that there won’t be any delays when it comes to this kind of stuff at the facility. The lawyer said that everyone was very courteous and respectful when she came in, which made it quite easy for her to relax as she went through the process.
He said he gave the actress a set of rosary beads and a necklace with a St. Christopher and St. Teresa medals, which she was allowed to keep with her.
Leonard said he is not really sure if Giudice’s children will visit her over the weekend. What he is sure about is that they will come to see her, because the reality actress wants to see her kids whenever she is allowed to.
The lawyer stressed that Giudice’s kids are her only priority in life and that this was quite evident since he got involved with her for the case. He said the actress’ main concern over her prison sentence was how it was going to affect her children.
Giudice was said to have heard Mass with her husband and daughters at a church in New Jersey during her last day of freedom. It was her husband who drove their girls to school on Monday morning.
Joe Giudice also pled guilty to 39 counts of bankruptcy fraud and conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud last year. He is set to serve 41 months in prison after his wife, Teresa, has completed her sentence. As he is not a U.S. citizen, he may also be deported after his release.
The couple has been allowed to serve their sentences separately, so one of them can stay with their children during the other’s imprisonment.
To learn more about the Giudice’s sentence and the reason behind it, check out the videos below: