Heather Gay and Meredith Marks have reacted to their co-star, Jen Shah’s guilty plea.
According to Page Six, Heather and Meredith were notified of their friend’s guilty plea before she entered the courtroom on Monday. An insider told the news outlet that Jen, 48, called Heather ahead of her hearing and asked her to pass on the information to Marks. They also alleged that the two Real Housewives of Salt Lake City stars had been in New York ahead of the trial since they wanted to be around Shah to support her.
Marks had shown her support for Jen Shah the night before on her Instagram stories. Meredith wrote, “For those of you who may not know this. I live in the United States of America. In the US one has a right to a trial and is presumed innocent until proven guilty.” Bravo fans came after her for defending Shah after she pleaded guilty during her trial. Meredith alleged that she was blindsided by Jen Shah since most of the cast mates thought she was in New York for her pre-trial preparations.
Real Housewives of Salt Lake City stars, Whitney Rose and Lisa Barlow, were also shocked to hear about the news. A source close to the Bravo stars said they didn’t expect Shah to plead guilty since she always told everyone she was innocent and going to fight the case in court. The insider also claims that Jen told her friends, “the reason people plead [guilty] is because they’re afraid and they can’t afford it, but that she can afford it and she was going to fight for her innocence.”
Jen pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud in connection to telemarketing. Her lawyer, Priya Chaudry, said that Jen pleaded guilty because she wants to pay her debt to society. “She knew she had to plead guilty because she was going to be guilty anyway and didn’t want to drag her mom, her husband, her kids, and everybody into it.”
The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City star shares two sons, Sharrieff Jr., 28, and Omar, 19, with her husband, Sharieff Shah, Sr. In her plea agreement, it states that she gets a reduced sentence of between 11 to 14 years in jail and has to pay up to $9.5 million in restitution fees. Jen Shah’s sentencing date is set for November 2022.