"I did not give them money but I know people on this couch did."
The women of "Real Housewives of Salt Lake City" gave some insight into how Jen Shah's legal fees have allegedly affected her finances.
During part two of this season's reunion on Wednesday night, Shah's close friend Heather Gay shared her theories on why the 49-year-old reality star changed her plea from not guilty to guilty after months of fiercely claiming her innocence.
When host Andy Cohen asked whether or not she believed Jen switched her plea to protect her husband Sharrieff "Coach" Shah, Gay replied, "I really feel like it was financial and they saw something that was like, 'Listen, it's not worth rolling the dice because it's going to be so expensive and if it's not a clear win, we can't risk it."
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The 40-year-old television personality claimed Shah spoke with her about the "astronomical" cost of the trial. "Just to get the transcripts it was $2,000 a day and the cost was overwhelming," she said, adding that going to trial would have only put them more in the hole.
In order to pay her legal fees, Gay claimed Jen asked friends and fellow cast members for financial help.
"They solicited friends for money and a lot of our friends gave them money," she said. "I did not give them money but I know people on this couch did."
Last month, Shah was given 78 months -- or about 6.5 years -- for her role in a nationwide telemarketing scheme. Shah and assistant Stuart Smith were accused of generating and selling "lead lists" of innocent people who could be targeted as part of a telemarketing scam for almost a decade. Many of the victims were elderly and working class.
She was arrested while filming season two of the show and eventually pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, after initially entering a not guilty plea in July 2022.
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Lisa Barlow also said Jen and Coach asked for money and she almost pitched in.
"They asked John," said Lisa, referring to her husband. "They asked me. I didn't because our counsel said we probably shouldn't, otherwise, I would've."
Heather continued, "It was very expensive and a lot of people came forward with money. I can't. I can't do that to my family."
In addition to lack of funds, Barlow claimed she heard about a "smoking gun" that really implicated Shah. "It was a text or something that she had sent to Stu that basically incriminated her," the Vida Tequila CEO said.
"I don't know the details, but I would assume it was some type of smoking gun that showed knowledge," Heather said, adding in her two cents.