Joe Giudice got some special visitors on his birthday this week.
As he awaits the fate of his ongoing deportation battle, the Real Housewives of New Jersey star remains in custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement. PEOPLE confirms that his wife Teresa Giudice and their four daughters — Gia, 18, Gabriella, 15, Milania, 14, and Audriana, 10 — visited him on his 47th birthday Wednesday, marking the first time they had seen him since he was released from prison two months ago after completing a 41-month sentence for mail, wire and bankruptcy fraud.
“It is a difficult place to visit, from the overall cleanliness to the actual application for a visit to happen,” a source told E! News, . “Plus, it is just so far away.”
PEOPLE has reached out to the family’s lawyer for comment.
Gia also wished her father a happy birthday on Instagram, writing, “Happy Birthday to the guy who teaches me every day to keep going and never stop fighting! You inspire me every day. Love you so much, keep smiling see you soon.”
Joe and Teresa, 47, were indicted in 2013 when they were accused of hiding their fortune in a bankruptcy filing. Joe was also accused of failing to file tax returns between 2004 and 2008.
Teresa was released from federal prison in 2015 after serving 11 months of a 15-month sentence for fraud.
In October, an immigration court ruled to deport Joe to his native Italy after his prison sentence. (Even though he has lived in the United States since he was a child, he never obtained American citizenship, and immigrants can be deported if they are convicted of “a crime of moral turpitude” or an “aggravated felony,” according to U.S. law.)
Since his release from prison in March, the father of four has been living at a facility in western Pennsylvania that houses immigration detainees.
Earlier this week, the Bravo star was granted permission to continue living in the U. S. as he awaits his fate, according to court documents obtained by The Blast.
“We are grateful that the court has granted the stay,” the family’s attorney told PEOPLE. “Joe looks forward to continuing this fight to the very end. There is nothing more important to him than returning home to his wife and kids.”