Why Real Housewives Of Salt Lake City Star Jen Shah Filed For Her Fraud Charges To Be Dismissed Again

screenshot jen shah
(Image credit: Bravo)

Following her arrest and not guilty plea earlier this year, Jen Shah has been fighting tooth-and-nail against the allegations that she masterminded a nationwide telemarketing scheme. So much so, in fact, that she is supposedly getting into hefty financial debt just for her defense team alone. Back in June, she made her first attempt to have the case thrown out entirely, citing coercion from the arresting officers and detectives involved. The motion was rejected by the presiding judge at the time, but now the Real Housewives of Salt Lake City star has a new reason why the fraud charges should be dismissed.

According to the latest court documents in the case obtained by People, the reality star and her legal team have filed for her criminal charges to be dismissed because of the recently-released Hulu documentary about her situation, called The Housewife & the Shah Shocker. They suggest that the special jeopardizes the presumption of Shah's innocence in court, specifically by two Homeland Security investigators involved in the case sharing details and opinions within documentary. The court documents state,

Their behavior has destroyed any chance that Ms. Shah will have a fair trial with an impartial jury … Given both the extensive viewership of Hulu nationwide and Ms. Shah's public notoriety, a change in venue would not protect Ms. Shah's rights, nor would alternative remedies such as a detailed voir dire or emphatic jury instructions.

The Housewife & the Shah Shocker was released on Hulu on November 29, and it certainly dropped quite a few shocking statements about Jen Shah. Victims shared how they lost thousands of dollars in the alleged telemarketing scheme. ABC correspondent Aaron Katersky detailed how Shah had worked for a company years ago that was ultimately fined millions of dollars for “deceptive sales practices.” Moreover, the Homeland Security Investigations' Acting Special Agent in Charge, Rick Patel, shared that the ringleaders of the scheme in question are “pros at what they do” and “disgusting” for targeting vulnerable populations.

Of late, things have seemed to take an even worse turn for the Real Housewives of Salt Lake City alum. Her former assistant and co-conspirator in the fraud case, Stuart Smith, changed his previous not guilty plea to guilty of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, money laundering and obstruction, all of which could land him with a 70-year prison maximum sentence, per People. What’s more is that Shah’s Bravo co-star Meredith Marks has accused her and her entourage during the currently airing second season of shady misdeeds in the past, but Shah has since refuted the claims.

Nevertheless, Jen Shah has jokingly made light of her legal troubles on social media, even going so far as to outright compare them as bigger than those of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Erika Jayne. Shah maintains that she is innocent but unless the judge in her case decides to actually throw out her case this time, she’ll have to officially answer to the accusations at her trial slated for March 2022. In the meantime, the Real Housewives of Salt Lake City is still airing on Sundays at 9 p.m. ET on Bravo.

Lauren Vanderveen
Movies and TV News Writer

Freelance writer. Favs: film history, reality TV, astronomy, French fries.