Andy Cohen has defended his initial response to Real Housewives Of Salt Lake City star Jen Shah’s telemarketing scheme and his hope that she didn’t get a prison sentence.
The TV presenter, 54, was interviewed by Chris Wallace, 75, on Sunday, where he said, “You’re on record, last November, where you said you hoped you didn’t get a prison sentence.” Why would you side with it against the thousands of people it conquered, including so many old people?
The Bravo executive explained, “I guess I hoped she was actually innocent. But Wallace quickly replied, ‘She pleaded guilty! ‘”
In defense of his words: Andy Cohen defended his initial response to Jen Shah’s nationwide telemarketing scheme and his hope she didn’t get jail time in a new interview with CNN.
“That was before you pleaded guilty, I mean, I said that, I guess?” Cohen responded to questioning by the 49-year-old Shah.
And Wallace replies, “No, I think that was after that.”
‘Oh really?’ Looking coy, Cohen — who serves as an executive producer on the Real Housewives franchises — replied, “Oh my God. Um, anyway! Wow, that’s fun.”
Grilled: ‘Why do you take her side against the thousands of people she has conquered, including so many old people [people]? CNN reporter Chris Wallace, 75, asked the TV host, 54, on Sunday.
The Hope of Innocence: “I think I was hoping she was actually innocent,” Cohen explained. But Wallace quickly replied, “I pleaded guilty!” ; Shah is pictured leaving Manhattan Federal Courthouse on January 6, 2023 in New York City
Cohen said he did not remember the exact “context” of his comment, but said viewers were “demanding” to know Shah’s status in the show.
Reminding him that Shah “did something bad,” he told Wallace, “and I’m like, ‘It’s up to the judge.'” She’s about to get a lot of jail time.”
‘Yes, I did. And so, you should go to jail,’ he agreed.
He added, “You know, sometimes if you get to know someone and like them, you hope they’re not guilty of something terrible.”
Tense: “That was before you pleaded guilty, I mean, I said that, I’ll think?” Cohen responded to the questioning. “No,” Wallace replied, “I think it was then.”
His side of the story: “You know, sometimes if you get to know someone and like them, you hope they’re not guilty of something terrible,” he added.
Cohen’s initial quote comes from a November 2022 interview with Us Weekly, in which he discussed whether Shah would return for the fourth season of RHOSLC.
She’s sentenced on December 15th, so I don’t know what to say to people who want her on the show. I hope she won’t be jailed at all and can go straight back…but I have a feeling she won’t be available to participate in the programme,” he said at the time.
However, Shah did not attend the season 3 reunion and was absent from BravoCon, which took place in October 2022. She has been a cast member of RHOSLC for its entire three seasons that ran on Bravo starting in November 2020.
Shah was sentenced to six-and-a-half years in prison earlier this month for running a years-long telemarketing scheme that prosecutors say targets the elderly and vulnerable, stripping them of their savings and topping up their credit cards.
Jail Sentence: Shah was sentenced to six-and-a-half years in prison earlier this month, for running a years-long telemarketing scheme that prosecutors say targeted the elderly
Real Housewives Of Salt Lake City star: The 49-year-old was one of the most bombastic characters on the Bravo series
She pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud in July in a dramatic U-Turn defence. She must prepare herself to be transported to prison on February 17, and she will serve her sentence at a facility in Texas.
Shah herself cried as she read a court statement, claiming her reality TV persona was nothing more than an act. She pledged to raise $6.5 million in compensation for the victims, and has said she intends to do so from prison.
But the plaintiffs showed no mercy, telling the court how Shah once laughed at the fact that one of her victims called the company crying because it was losing all its money.
Shah, who is one of the hottest characters in her Bravo reality TV series franchise, denied any wrongdoing for months.
Then she changed her application dramatically in July following a guilty plea from her former co-worker, Stuart Smith.
Reality World: Shah was a cast member of RHOSLC for all three of his seasons on Bravo starting in November 2020; Pictured in a promotional shot from Season 3
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