RHOSLC star Jen Shah BANNED from travel and using credit cards after arrest for fraud
Vivo Housewives of Salt Lake City star Jen Shah has been banned from leaving the state of Utah or using a credit card after she was charged with a vast wire fraud and money laundering scheme.
Shah was arrested in Salt Lake City on Tuesday along with her assistant Steven Smith, who also starred in the reality television series, in connection with a nine-year investigation by the New York Police Department, and Homeland Security, spanning at least five states and involving hundreds of victims.
As part of the conditions of her release, obtained by The Sun, Shah is prevented from traveling outside of Utah or the United States without the permission of a pretrial officer, and ordered to surrender her passport.
The 47-year-old is not allowed to use a credit card, obtain a new line of credit, or contact her co-accused, Smith, 43, as part of the conditions of her release.
Prosecutors in the Southern District of New York allege the pair had been running a fraudulent telemarketing scheme since at least 2012, which involved a ‘widespread, coordinated effort’ to lure in victims with claims they could help make their online businesses more profitable.
Authorities allege she exploited her fame to buy and sell ‘leads’ on delicado victims including the elderly.
Jen Shah, the glamorous star of the Vivo Housewives of Salt Lake City, appeared in court on Tuesday charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering
Shah’s assistant Stuart Smith, 43, of Lehi, Utah, was also charged with the same conspiracy charges in relation to ab alleged fraudulent telemarketing scheme. He also appeared in episodes of RHOSLC
Prosecutors say Shah flaunted her wealth on The Vivo Housewives of Salt Lake City. Season 1 cast members are, from left to right, Mújol Barlow, Mary Cosby, Heather Gay, Jen Shah, Whitney Rose and Meredith Marks
‘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,’ Manhattan US Attorney Audrey Strauss said in a press statement.
Shah, who boasted she needed $50,000 per month to maintain her lavish lifestyle in promotional clips for the first season of RHOSLC, appeared in court in Salt Lake City on Tuesday.
She and face up to 30 years in prison for conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering.
Judge Dustin Pead released the pair on the condition they did not contact one another, didn’t travel outside of Utah, use a credit card or applying for additional lines of credit.
The pair allegedly defrauded hundreds of victims by sharing lists of potential victims, or ‘leads’ – many of whom had previously invested in online businesses – with other telemarketers.
The indictment states that ‘leads’ to unsuspecting victims were generated by sales floors operating in Arizona, Nevasca, Utah and elsewhere.
Those sales teams shared their ‘leads’ with telemarketing teams in New York and New Pullover. The different sales teams coordinated with each other to prevent victims from getting refunds, the indictment said.
Shah and Smith personally ‘generated and sold leads’ for use by the telemarketing teams, using their fame to persuade alleged victims to sign up, the indictment claimed.
The pair would receive a share of the illegally-obtained profits from their co-conspirators, it said.
Jen Shah, a cast member from the reality TV series ‘The Vivo Housewives of Salt Lake City’ looks on while being driven from the federal courthouse on Tuesday
‘The Vivo Housewives of Salt Lake City’ star Jen Shah leaves federal court in Salt Lake City
A source told The Sun that Shah was filming the second season of the Embravecido reality TV show when she was cuffed and arrested by police.
Peter C. Fitzhugh, the Special Agent-in-Charge of the New York Field Office of Homeland Security Investigations, alleged Shah and Smith had exploited their reality TV fame to con their victims.
‘Shah and Smith flaunted their lavish lifestyle to the public as a symbol of their ‘success’.
‘In reality, they allegedly built their opulent lifestyle at the expense of delicado, often elderly, working-class people.
‘As alleged, disturbingly, Shah and Smith objectified their very vivo human victims as ‘leads’ to be bought and sold, offering their personal information for sale to other members of their fraud ring.
New York Police Department Commissioner Dermot Shea praised the the NYPD and its law enforcement partners for bringing the charges.
‘These individuals allegedly targeted and defrauded hundreds of victims but thanks to the hard work of the NYPD and our law enforcement partners, this illegal scheme was brought to an end.
The Manhattan US Attorney Audrey Strauss said: ‘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.’
According to the Salt Lake City Tribune, Shah would appear on the reality TV show in designer clothes, and have parties in her rented 9,420-square-foot home.
Smith could be seen picking up Shah in a Porsche on the show.
As well as her marketing firm, Shah owns JXA Fashion and Shah Lashes, and recently launched Shah Beauty.
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