Before her life likely takes a turn, Jen Shah is making the most of her time as a free woman in 2023. The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City star traveled to California to support her husband, Coach Sharrieff Shah, days before she’s set to be sentenced after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud.
The Bravo star, 49, took to Instagram Stories on Monday, January 2, to share two selfies from Pasadena. She was in the crowd to watch the University of Utah play Penn State in the Rose Bowl. Sharrieff, who has been married to Jen since 1994, is the Pac-12 school’s special teams coordinator and cornerbacks coach.
Jen is days away from facing the judge on Friday, January 6, nearly one year after she was arrested in connection to a telemarketing scheme that defrauded hundreds of victims, the majority of whom were older than 55 years old. While the reality star and assistant Stuart Smith pleaded not guilty at the time, they both changed their pleas.
“In 2012 to March 2021 in the Southern District of New York and elsewhere I agreed with others to commit wire fraud,” Jen told Judge Sidney Stein in July 2022 when she pleaded guilty. “I knew this was wrong. I knew many people were harmed and I’m so sorry.”
While Jen’s plea agreement recommended a range between 11 and 14 years in prison, she has since asked the judge for a shorter prison sentence of three years. Sharrieff and the couple’s two sons, Sharrieff Jr., 28, and Omar, 19, also wrote letters on her behalf last month.
“Jen has never been arrested or detained for any crime. My wife’s current legal predicament was caused by a confluence of events that came together at various points, which caused her to spiral out of control,” the football coach wrote, alleging that strains on their marriage prompted his wife to “make catastrophically bad business decisions and develop relationships with awful people.”
Sharrieff Sr. continued: “Because of my absence, I was not able to see how badly my wife was suffering. As I think about it now, I saw her spending more time in our bedroom alone. She often fell asleep in our children’s bed waiting for me to come home. She would constantly tell me that she feels so alone.”
The government responded to the request for leniency by recommending the judge sentence Jen to 10 years in prison, stating that her “belated expressions of remorse ring hollow” as she previously maintained her innocence on RHOSLC and social media. Several victims’ impact statements were subsequently released.
“You sounded sympathetic and convincing, so I trusted you,” one alleged victim wrote. “I was such an idiot. The courts may have some form of punishment for the lawless activities that have been committed, but even when you have served your due punishment, whatever that may be, our God and heavenly creator of all things will be the one, in the long run, who you will truly have to answer to.”
Another person detailed their mental health struggles after spending thousands of dollars on fraudulent tutoring courses.
“Your sanity is in doubt, your confidence eroded, your independence, what limited amount there is, curbed and you can’t trust anybody,” the second victim penned. “You are not the same person you were before this experience. Whoever these telemarketers are, should cease stealing money and repay what they stolen, and perform acts of restitution, such as living as we are, doing what we do with what limited resources we have, and pay for medical services, such as therapy or psychiatric meds.”
While season 3 of RHOSLC is currently airing, Jen was not in attendance at last month’s reunion taping.