UPDATED with newest: Real Housewives of Salt Lake City star Jen Shah and her assistant, Stuart Smith, each pleaded not responsible on Friday to prices of conspiracy to commit cash laundering and wire fraud, in keeping with stories from CNN and NBC Information.
The fees were filed on March 30 by the U.S. Lawyer’s Workplace within the Southern District of New York. The duo was arrested the identical day.
Shah can be allowed to publish a $1 million private recognizance bond. Throughout her trip on bond, she is barred from any affiliation with telemarketing actions and should keep throughout the state of Utah. Shah might, nonetheless, journey to Washington, DC and New York for courtroom appearances.
The trial is about to start on October 18.
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PREVIOUSLY on March 30: Extra authorized bother for the Actual Housewives franchise. Federal prosecutors say Actual Housewives of Salt Lake Metropolis star Jen Shah and her assistant, Stuart Smith, engaged in a nationwide fraud, telemarketing and conspiracy to commit cash laundering scheme.
Based on the submitting, the duo and different accomplices “carried out a wide-ranging telemarketing scheme that defrauded a whole bunch of victims (the “Victims”) all through the USA, a lot of whom had been over age 55.” They’re accused of “promoting these Victims so-called ‘enterprise providers’ in reference to the Victims’ purported on-line companies.”
The indictment alleges “a widespread, coordinated effort to visitors in lists of potential victims, or ‘leads,’ a lot of whom had beforehand made an preliminary funding to create a web-based enterprise with different Members.”
The Actual Housewives duo allegedly, “amongst different issues, generated and bought results in different Members to be used by their telemarketing gross sales flooring with the information that the people that they had recognized as ‘leads’ could be defrauded by the opposite Members. SHAH and SMITH obtained as revenue a share of the fraudulent income…”
Shah and Smith are every charged with one depend of “conspiracy to commit wire fraud in reference to telemarketing via which they victimized 10 or extra individuals over the age of 55.” That cost carries a most sentence of 30 years. They had been additionally every hit with one depend of “conspiracy to commit cash laundering, which carries a most sentence of 20 years.”
Shah and Smith had been arrested earlier as we speak and can be offered this afternoon in Salt Lake Metropolis federal courtroom.
Actual Housewives of Salt Lake Metropolis was renewed final month for a second season.
After all, this isn’t the primary time one of many Bravo franchise’s stars has been hit with federal prices. Between 2014 and 2015, Actual Housewives of New Jersey star Teresa Giudice served a 15-month stint in federal jail for fraud. Her husband Joe spent 41 months in jail.
You may learn your complete federal indictment under.
Audrey Strauss, the USA Lawyer for the Southern District of New York, Peter C. Fitzhugh, the Particular Agent-in-Cost of the New York Area Workplace of Homeland Safety Investigations (“HSI”), and Dermot Shea, Commissioner of the New York Metropolis Police Division (“NYPD”), introduced the unsealing of a Superseding Indictment charging JENNIFER SHAH and STUART SMITH with conspiracy to commit wire fraud in reference to telemarketing and conspiracy to commit cash laundering. The case has been assigned to United States District Choose Sidney H. Stein.
SHAH and SMITH had been arrested earlier as we speak and can be offered this afternoon in Salt Lake Metropolis federal courtroom earlier than United States Justice of the Peace Choose Dustin Pead.
Manhattan U.S. Lawyer Audrey Strauss mentioned: “Jennifer Shah, who portrays herself as a rich and profitable businessperson on ‘actuality’ tv, and Stuart Smith, who’s portrayed as Shah’s ‘first assistant,’ allegedly generated and bought ‘lead lists’ of harmless people for different members of their scheme to repeatedly rip-off. In precise actuality and as alleged, the so-called enterprise alternatives pushed on the victims by Shah, Smith, and their co-conspirators had been simply fraudulent schemes, motivated by greed, to steal victims’ cash. Now, these defendants face time in jail for his or her alleged crimes.”
HSI Particular Agent-in-Cost Peter C. Fitzhugh mentioned: “Shah and Smith flaunted their lavish life-style to the general public as a logo of their ‘success.’ In actuality, they allegedly constructed their opulent life-style on the expense of susceptible, usually aged, working-class individuals. As alleged, disturbingly, Shah and Smith objectified their very actual human victims as ‘leads’ to be purchased and bought, providing their private info on the market to different members of their fraud ring. Working with our companions on the NYPD and the USA Lawyer’s Workplace, SDNY, and with the help of HSI Salt Lake Metropolis, HSI New York labored to make sure that Shah and Smith will reply for his or her alleged crimes. Consequently, their new actuality might very effectively prove in a different way than they anticipated.”
NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea mentioned: “These people allegedly focused and defrauded a whole bunch of victims however because of the onerous work of the NYPD and our legislation enforcement companions, this unlawful scheme was dropped at an finish. I congratulate the NYPD detectives, Homeland Safety Investigations, and the U.S. Lawyer for the Southern District of New York for his or her onerous work in bringing these individuals to justice.”
Based on the allegations within the Superseding Indictment:
From 2012 till March 2021, JENNIFER SHAH and STUART SMITH, along with others (collectively, the “Members”) carried out a wide-ranging telemarketing scheme that defrauded a whole bunch of victims (the “Victims”) all through the USA, a lot of whom had been over age 55, by promoting these Victims so-called “enterprise providers” in reference to the Victims’ purported on-line companies (the “Enterprise Alternative Scheme”).
To be able to perpetrate the Enterprise Alternative Scheme, Members, together with SHAH and SMITH, engaged in a widespread, coordinated effort to visitors in lists of potential victims, or “leads,” a lot of whom had beforehand made an preliminary funding to create a web-based enterprise with different Members within the Scheme. Leads had been initially generated by gross sales flooring working in, amongst different locations, Arizona, Nevada, and Utah. The homeowners and operators of these gross sales flooring operated in coordination with a number of telemarketing gross sales flooring within the New York and New Jersey space, together with in Manhattan, and supplied lead lists and help in preventing Sufferer refund requests to different Members working these flooring.
SHAH and SMITH, amongst different issues, generated and bought results in different Members to be used by their telemarketing gross sales flooring with the information that the people that they had recognized as “leads” could be defrauded by the opposite Members. SHAH and SMITH obtained as revenue a share of the fraudulent income per the phrases of their settlement with these Members. SHAH and SMITH usually managed every facet of the frauds perpetrated by different Members on the people that they had recognized by, amongst different issues, figuring out which “teaching” gross sales flooring might purchase leads from them, choosing the downstream gross sales flooring to which the “teaching” gross sales flooring was permitted to cross the leads, selecting the companies to supply “achievement” providers, that’s, paperwork and information purporting to exhibit that the providers the Members claimed to supply to these Victims had been precise and bonafide, setting how a lot the downstream gross sales flooring might cost, and figuring out which “merchandise” every of the downstream gross sales flooring might promote.
To perpetrate the Enterprise Alternative Scheme, sure of the Members bought alleged providers purporting to make the administration of Victims’ companies extra environment friendly or worthwhile, together with tax preparation or web site design providers, however that many Victims had been aged and didn’t personal a pc. On the outset of the Enterprise Alternative Scheme, sure Members employed by a purported achievement firm despatched a given Sufferer digital or paper pamphlets or supplied so-called “teaching periods” relating to these purported on-line companies, however at no level did the defendants intend that the Victims would truly earn any of the promised return on their supposed funding, nor did the Victims truly earn any such returns.
SHAH and SMITH undertook important efforts to hide their roles within the Enterprise Alternative Scheme. For instance, SHAH and SMITH, amongst different issues, integrated their enterprise entities utilizing third events’ names and instructed different Members to do the identical, used and directed others to make use of encrypted messaging purposes to speak with different Members, instructed different Members to ship SHAH’s and SMITH’s shares of sure fraud proceeds to offshore financial institution accounts, and made quite a few money withdrawals structured to keep away from foreign money transaction reporting necessities.
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SHAH, 47, of Park Metropolis, Utah, and SMITH, 43, of Lehi, Utah, are every charged with one depend of conspiracy to commit wire fraud in reference to telemarketing via which they victimized 10 or extra individuals over the age of 55, which carries a most sentence of 30 years, and one depend of conspiracy to commit cash laundering, which carries a most sentence of 20 years. The utmost potential sentences on this case are prescribed by Congress and are supplied right here for informational functions solely, as any sentencing of the defendants can be decided by the decide.
Ms. Strauss praised the excellent investigative work of HSI’s El Dorado Activity Pressure and the NYPD. Ms. Strauss additionally thanked HSI Utah and the USA Lawyer’s Workplace for the District of Utah for his or her assist and help on this investigation.
This case is being dealt with by the Workplace’s Cash Laundering and Transnational Felony Enterprises Unit. Assistant United States Attorneys Kiersten A. Fletcher, Benet J. Kearney, and Robert B. Sobelman are accountable for the prosecution.
For those who consider you have got been a sufferer of the scheme described above, together with a sufferer entitled to restitution, and also you want to present info to legislation enforcement and/or obtain discover of future developments within the case or further info, please contact Wendy Olsen-Clancy, the Sufferer Witness Coordinator at the USA Lawyer’s Workplace for the Southern District of New York, at 866-874-8900 or firstname.lastname@example.org. You may additionally report it to Detective Christopher Bastos at 917-480-7167 or email@example.com.
The fees contained within the Superseding Indictment are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed harmless except and till confirmed responsible.