Utah ‘Real Housewives’ Star Seeks Dismissal Over Fraud Case – NBC10 Philadelphia
“Real Housewives of Salt Lake City” star Jen Shah and her defense attorneys this week called on a New York federal judge to dismiss charges against her in fraud case because police allegedly forced her to give up her rights to Miranda when she was arrested in Utah.
Shah, 47, and his assistant have been charged in a telemarketing scheme that federal prosecutors say has benefited hundreds of “vulnerable, often elderly, working-class people,” the Salt Lake Tribune reported. They both pleaded not guilty to several counts.
Shah faces several counts of Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud and Conspiracy to Commit Money Laundering.
Prosecutors said the scheme tricked people into investing in an online “business opportunity” and then sold them tax preparation or website design services, although many people did not own computers.
Prosecutors accused Shah and his assistant of selling lists of potential victims generated by telemarketing “sales floors” in Utah, Arizona, Nevada and elsewhere. The owners of the sales area are said to have worked with telemarketing operations in New York and New Jersey.
Shah was arrested on March 30 by New York City Detective Christopher Bastos in Salt Lake City after receiving a confusing phone call. She believed the appeal was related to a protection order she had issued against a man who had previously attacked her and had been convicted of several crimes in New York City. After the call, she received another call from Bastos, believing he was also related to the protection order.
Bastos, who told Shah to stop on her way to a shoot in Utah, arrested her as a suspect in the telemark fraud case. But when Shah asked her if she was going to jail, she told officials Bastos had made her believe that she “might be in danger and the police might be there to help me.”
Shah’s lawyers claim she was coerced and pointed out that Bastos knew about her history with the man, who prosecutors said was also involved in the scheme with Shah and his assistant.
“Although Ms Shah waived her Miranda rights, she did not do so voluntarily, but rather as a direct result of the deception and cunning of law enforcement calculated to overcome her will,” her lawyers said. .
Her lawyers also said prosecutors failed to provide enough information for the case to proceed, arguing that she was accused of participating in a scheme with “unspecified co-conspirators in unspecified locations. specified and sell unspecified products and services to unspecified victims, while laundering money through unspecified accounts with unspecified financial institutions at unspecified times over a period of eight or nine years.
Prosecutors have argued that they have handed over more than a million documents and the contents of hundreds of electronic devices, which defense lawyers say makes it impossible to understand or respond to specific allegations.
Shah’s defense lawyers also argue that she was not the only one Bastos lied to. They said some evidence was uncovered during authorized searches on the basis of inaccurate or incomplete police statements.
They argued that Bastos described Shah as the “operator” of two companies that allegedly did business with the retail space, but her lawyers said she was “the middle manager” of one and not one employee on the other. As a result, lawyers argued that Bastos had falsely inflated Shah’s involvement.
Staff at the New York Police Department and the Southern District of New York City’s United States Attorney’s Office did not immediately respond to requests for comment from the Salt Lake Tribune.