Housewives making headlines! Jen Shah was arrested on Tuesday, March 30, for her alleged role in a telemarketing scheme that defrauded hundreds of victims, many elderly and working-class, throughout the United States.
The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City star, 47, and her assistant Stuart Smith were both booked for the crime.
“Jennifer Shah, who portrays herself as a wealthy and successful businessperson on ‘reality’ television, and Stuart Smith, who is portrayed as Shah’s ‘first assistant,’ allegedly generated and sold ‘lead lists’ of innocent individuals for other members of their scheme to repeatedly scam,” Manhattan U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss said in a press release on Tuesday. “In actual reality and as alleged, the so-called business opportunities pushed on the victims by Shah, Smith, and their co-conspirators were just fraudulent schemes, motivated by greed, to steal victims’ money. Now, these defendants face time in prison for their alleged crimes.”
HSI Special Agent-in-Charge Peter C. Fitzhugh added that Shah and Smith flaunted their lavish lifestyle to the public, boasting success while actually gaining their riches at the “expense of vulnerable [people].”
Following the arrest, Variety confirmed that the Bravo series was filming at the time of the arrest while the cast prepared for a trip to Colorado.
Good or bad, Housewives promise to share their lives with the cameras. Shah first entered the public eye when she was cast on season 1 of the Bravo series, which premiered in November 2020.
Along with her castmates Meredith Marks, Whitney Rose, Heather Gay, Lisa Barlow and Mary Cosby, Shah was tasked with showing viewers the glamorous side of Utah, where she was born and raised. By doing so, she also gave fans a peek at her experience in a predominantly white, Mormon community, where she felt she stuck out while growing up.
“[Jen] is electricity,” fellow cast member Gay, 48, said in a November 2020 interview with The Salt Lake Tribune. “She is charismatic. She is funny. She is sharp. She is volatile. She is passionate. She is crazy. And I love people like that. They’re terrifying, but they’re the most fun.”
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