Joe Giudice made a fast friend once he began his 41-month prison sentence — and it was no other than Real Housewives of Atlanta star Phaedra Parks’ estranged husband, Apollo Nida.

"Apollo and Joe immediately hit it off because they obviously have so much in common. Having spouses on Bravo reality shows, both convicted of crimes, there was just an instant bond,” a source exclusively tells In Touch.

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Phaedra Parks and Apollo Nida.

“Joe was so appreciative that Apollo was going out of his way to guide him about how life in prison really works. Who to stay away from, which job he should try and get, it was just amazing the way Apollo stepped up as they had never met before.”

Unfortunately, Apollo was caught using a cell phone and placed in solitary confinement.

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The source continues, “Joe was really upset because Apollo really felt like a brother. He doesn't know how long Apollo will be in solitary for. Joe is just keeping his head down and keeping a very low profile."

Joe has had several visitors from extended family members since his March 23 surrender, though his wife, Teresa Giudice, is still waiting for approval to be placed on his guest list.