How Jen Shah's Husband Helped Celebrate Her Milestone 50th Birthday Behind Bars

Former "Real Housewives of Salt Lake City" alum Jen Shah's 50th birthday was the perfect example of not being able to have your cake and eat it, too. But, if you keep up your good behavior, you can have a 10-minute phone call with your husband from the Federal Prison Camp in Bryan, Texas. So, that's exactly how the imprisoned housewife celebrated.

Shah was sentenced to six-and-a-half years in federal prison after she was found guilty of running a national telemarketing fraud scheme that primarily targeted senior citizens, per NPR. She reported to prison in February 2023, seven months before her big 5-0. In an Instagram video uploaded to Shah's account, her husband, Sharrieff Shah, shared how the couple celebrated Jen's birthday while she was behind bars.

The University of Utah football coach said he collected birthday messages from 50 of Jen's closest loved ones so he could read them back to his wife over the phone for her allotted 10-minute call. "My wife cried and cried tears of joy and appreciation for at least six and a half minutes," Coach Shah said.

Sharrieff Shah has taken a faith-based stance on Jen Shah's prison sentence

Jen Shah made a name for herself with her luxurious lifestyle as part of the "Real Housewives" crew. But unfortunately, her wire fraud victims were the primary funders of her lavish spending. Jen's husband, Sharrieff Shah, admitted in his Instagram video that his wife's 50th birthday didn't go as planned. Still, all hope did not seem to be lost.

"We are not where I thought we would be when my wife turned 50," Coach Shah said to the camera. "But I can also sit in front of you and tell you with complete conviction that we are exactly where God intended us to be. So, for that, I am humbled and continually grateful. We appreciate every single person who has prayed for us, who has continued to send beautiful thoughts our way, and who has continued to love us unconditionally." 

In addition to her touching phone call with her husband, Shah's former assistant, Murilo Bueno, told TMZ that the "RHOSLC" alum's fellow inmates made her makeshift prison sushi, cheese quesadillas, and pineapple upside-down cake. The prison delicacies were fashioned with food items from the commissary and a bit of ingenuity — the quesadillas, for example, were grilled using a flat iron hair styling tool.

Jen Shah is learning to come to terms with the consequences of her actions

Per the "Scamfluencers" podcast, Jen Shah's fraudulent crimes occurred over a decade through various business aliases, including Thrive Learning and Mastery Pro. Though the cons differed slightly, the main gist was the same. First, prey on working-class, often elderly people over the phone by "selling" business, marketing, and web development services that will never come. Then, sell their data to other telemarketers, deepening the scam and exploiting the victims for even more money.

Shah supplemented her lavish lifestyle on "RHOSLC" by paying for or renting luxury items with cash, which is harder to track federally. She maintained her innocence for years leading up to her March 2021 arrest before finally pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud via telemarketing. Since her prison sentence started, Shah has penned journal entries posted to her Instagram by her team in which she details her transition to inmate life. 

"I am trying to stay patient and not get frustrated," Shah wrote. "I must learn to focus on what I can and cannot control. That will be the key to my adjustment. I am not alone in my struggles, and I must remember that on days where I want to just see my husband and children. My eyes are filling up with tears. I go to the bathroom and cry so no one will see or hear me."