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January 29, 2023
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‘Real Housewives’ star Jen Shah ordered to complete mental health program after prison sentence

“The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City” star Jen Shah has been ordered to participate in a mental health treatment program as part of her probation following her prison release.

Shah, 49, was sentenced to 78 months in prison after she pleaded guilty to a count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Federal prosecutors said Shah was a leader of a “nationwide telemarketing fraud scheme” that victimized thousands of people.

She has been ordered to surrender to the Federal Bureau of Prisons on Feb. 17, according to a judgment filed last week in the U.S. District Court for Southern New York.

Jen Shah on “The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City.”Andrew Peterson / Bravo / NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Shah will undergo five years of supervised release, which will include mental health treatment approved by the U.S. Probation Office.

“You must continue to take any prescribed medications unless otherwise instructed by the health care provider,” the order states. “You must contribute to the cost of services rendered based on your ability to pay and the availability of third-party payments.”

Shah has said she suffered from depression and was on antidepressant medication during episodes of “The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City.” On a recent episode, Shah revealed to her castmates that she had attempted suicide in the aftermath of being charged in the federal case.

Shah said that she had locked herself in a bathroom and that her husband broke down the door. She said she was hospitalized for more than two days.

Shah pleaded for leniency in a statement to the court last month, saying her actions stemmed in part from “some personal painful experiences that I was going through in my life,” including the deaths of her father and a grandmother.

Her attorneys also filed a memorandum to the court last month asking for a 36-month sentence, describing her commitments to her children and community. It noted her work with a mental health organization that works within the Polynesian community.

“Given her own background, Jen feels deeply empathetic toward anyone marginalized, fearing rejection, and struggling with mental health issues,” the memorandum said.

But victims of the fraud scheme revealed the mental health toll Shah’s actions took on them in impact statements used to evaluate her sentencing. A Canadian woman who lost more than $100,000 said she contemplated suicide after the financial stress took a toll on her marriage and her ability to care for her ailing father.

“The burden you have caused me is overwhelming, I can’t even really put words to the amount of anguish you have caused,” the victim wrote to Shah in her impact statement.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, call 988 to reach the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline. You can also call the network, previously known as the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, at 800-273-8255, text HOME to 741741 or visit SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources for additional resources.

Doha Madani

Doha Madani is a senior breaking news reporter for NBC News. Pronouns: she/her.

Diana Dasrath

Diana Dasrath is entertainment producer and senior reporter for NBC News covering all platforms.

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