It's hard not to remember the time Jen Shah said, "The only thing I'm guilty of is being Shah-mazing," because it looks like she might be guilty of a bit more than that. It will certainly be difficult to film The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City from prison, but if anyone can do it, Jen Shah can. All jokes aside, she is facing quite a bit of jail time if convicted. So, how long could Jen Shah spend in prison? Allow us to break it down for you in what we're calling, The Real Big Housewife.
How much jail time is Jen Shah facing?
Hold onto your cowboy hats because we have a doozy of a federal criminal defense lawyer weighing in on the Jen Shah case. Brandon Sample, who is wearing a cowboy hat on his website, spoke with Hollywood Life about what could happen to Jen Shah if convicted. If found guilty of charges of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering, Jen faces a significant amount of prison time.
“She faces a statutory maximum sentence of 30 years on the charge of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. She also faces another 20 years on the money laundering charge," Brandon told Hollywood Life in an exclusive interview. That's the worst case scenario. In all likelihood, even if she's found guilty, her sentence could be shorter. Brandon theorized that if the courts determine Jen is guilty, she would most likely get 5 - 10 years.
Could Jen Shah be found not guilty?
Hollywood Life also spoke with criminal defense attorney Sharen Ghatan, who is not wearing a cowboy hat on her website, about the likelihood that a not guilty verdict could be handed down. Sharen seems to think this is a distinct possibility, if Jen's criminal record is clean. What really concerns Sharen, is the other defendants involved.
She believes that, "It’s highly likely that someone will rat someone else out. [Jen] Shah should use any inside knowledge to better her situation and bargain down to a lesser offense or best yet, a dismissal, in exchange for information about a ‘bigger fish.'" Gosh, what a terrifying peek into the mind of a criminal defense lawyer.
What is Jen Shah accused of?
In March 2021, Jen along with her assistant Stuart Smith, were arrested and charged with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud in connection with telemarketing. According to People Magazine online, they "allegedly victimized 10 or more persons over the age of 55." Jen and Stuart were also charged with one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering.
Initially, both plead not guilty during an arraignment in April 2021, but Stuart changed his plea to guilty in Nov. 2021. Jen maintains she is innocent. Their court date is currently set for some time in March 2022. People also noted that "others who were involved in the same telemarketing scheme and pleaded guilty to similar charges were given sentences ranging from about 5 to 7 years." Either way it looks like Jen could be swapping out a couture jumpsuit for an orange one. C'est la vie.