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Real Housewives of Salt Lake City star Jen Shah pleaded guilty to running a $5 million nationwide marketing scam that robbed elderly people.

Shah pleaded guilty before her trial was set to begin in Manhattan on July 18, according to DailyMail.com.
 
RELATED: RHOSLC star Jen Shah and her assistant arrested on fraud charges
 
The 48-year-old mom-of-two faces up to 14 years in prison when she is sentenced. She may also be ordered to pay $9.5 million in fines and restitution, per Page Six.

Shah and her assistant Stuart Smith were arrested on federal fraud charges in March 2021. The reality TV personality is accused of running a nationwide telemarketing and money laundering scheme.

Hundreds of elderly victims were charged thousands of dollars to receive unspecified services which "provided little to no value to the victims," according to a 10-page indictment.

Shah struggled to explain what she did for a living on an episode of Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen.

"My background is in direct response marketing for about twenty years," she said. "Our company does advertising. We have a platform that helps people acquire customers."

Shah was more forthcoming in federal court on Monday, July 11, when she pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud. The US attorney dropped her second count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, the Mail reported.

She admitted knowing what she did "was wrong" and that she was "so sorry" for the "many people" who were ripped off.

The former reality TV star admitted that she "agreed with others to commit wire fraud" and "knew it misled" her elderly victims.

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During the RHOSLC reunion show in March, Shah broke down as she explained that she was "fighting" the federal charges.

"I'm innocent. I will fight this for every person out there that can't fight for themselves because they don't have the resources or the means, so they don't fight," she said.

"I will fight because number one, I'm innocent, and number two I'm going to f---ing represent every other person out there that can't fight and hasn't been able to."

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An aspiring rapper who bragged about stealing pandemic benefits has agreed to plead guilty and will serve prison time.

According to the Department of Justice, 33-year-old Fontrell Antonio Baines, aka Nuke Bizzle, has agreed to a plea deal.

Baines, who is originally from Memphis, pled guilty to illegally obtaining COVID relief funds in 2020. He is accused of stealing more than $1.2 million in unemployment benefits preloaded on 92 debit cards from the Employment Development Department (EDD).

Federal authorities indicted Baines after he appeared in a music video for "EDD" flashing stacks of cash and bragging about defrauding the federal government.

"I just got rich off of EDD/ I just woke up to 300 Gs," Baines bragged. "Unemployment so sweet/ We had 1.5 land this week." Rapper Fat Wizza added: "You gotta sell cocaine, I can just file a claim."

The hip-hop artist was charged with access device fraud, aggravated identity theft, and interstate transportation of stolen property.

Prosecutors say the defendant and his associates exploited Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) provisions of the CARES Act.

He allegedly used the names of identify theft victims to obtain more than 90 pre-loaded debit cards. Those cards were reportedly mailed to Beverly Hills and Koreatown addresses that were linked to Baines.

Baines and his associates withdrew $704,000 in cash using the cards.

He also allegedly admitted to being a felon in possession of a firearm with 14 rounds of ammunition.

Baines agreed to plead guilty to one count of mail fraud and one count of unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition. He will also forfeit $56,000 in cash that was seized by federal agents.

Baines faces up to 20 years in prison for the fraud charges and 10 years for the weapons charges.
 

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Brittney Griner plead guilty on Thursday to carrying cannabis oil into Russia in her luggage in February.

Griner, 31, plead guilty during day 2 of her trial in Khimki, outside Moscow on Thursday, July 7.

"I'd like to plead guilty, your honor. But there was no intent. I didn't want to break the law," Griner said, according to Reuters.

She said she packed her luggage quickly and didn't realize the drugs were in her bag.

"I'd like to give my testimony later. I need time to prepare," she added. Her statement was translated into Russian for the court.

Griner's trial is expected to last several weeks or months, according to reports.

AFP via Getty Images

The two-time Olympic gold medalist and WNBA champion wore a red t-shirt with the word "Crenshaw" on the front and red jogging pants to court.

She was detained at Moscow airport in February on charges of carrying vape cartridges containing cannabis oil in her luggage. If convicted, the charge could carry a 10-year prison sentence.

Griner wrote a letter to the Biden administration pleading for help. The letter was delivered to the US President on Monday, July 4.

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Joe Biden spoke to Griner's significant other, Cherelle Griner, on the phone, and assured her that he is working to win her release as soon as possible.

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Fans and players in the WNBA and NBA show support for the political prisoner at every game.

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Her initials "BG" are painted on WNBA and NBA home courts, and players, such as Phoenix Mercury teammate Diana Taurasi and Celtics star Jaylen Brown, wear t-shirts with her name and initials printed on them.

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Instagram

Prosecutors want Nicki Minaj's husband, Kenneth Petty, to serve jail time -- not on home confinement in his luxurious Calabasas mansion with his wife.

Petty plead guilty to failing to register as a sex offender in California, and now he wants to serve his sentence on home confinement, TMZ Hip Hop has learned.

According to new legal documents obtained by TMZ, federal prosecutors don't think 6 months behind bars followed by supervised release is sufficient punishment for Petty.

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The feds note that Petty lives in a "gated affluent community" which includes a pool, Nicki's music studio, and their beautifully landscaped backyard -- amenities not available to other criminals in jail.

In fact, the U.S. Attorney's Office seems to think his luxurious lifestyle is what led Petty down the wrong path.

In the documents, prosecutors say Petty complied with his sex offender registry paperwork for nearly 20 years - until he met Nicki in 2019 and moved with her to Cali. There, he stopped registering as a sex offender.

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As prosecutors describe it, "Defendant began dating his wife, quit his job, moved to Los Angeles, and adopted an affluent lifestyle."

Petty told the court he didn't know he was supposed to register once he left NY state, but prosecutors say he was well aware of the rules after 2 decades.

TMZ reported, Petty had to register as a sex offender after a 1995 attempted rape of a teenager conviction in NY.

Now, federal prosecutors in Cali are recommending he serve 15 months hard time behind bars, 5 years supervised release and pay $55,000 in retribution. The judge will make a final ruling at Petty's sentencing hearing on July 6.

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Kimora Lee Simmons' estranged husband Tim Leissner was reportedly married to two women at the same time.

According to Page Six, former Goldman Sachs executive Tim Leissner is a "double bigamist" who was "married to two different women at the same time, twice."

Page Six quoted a defense lawyer for Leissner's co-defendant, Roger Ng, who is on trial for masterminding a multi-billion dollar embezzlement scheme.

Ng's defense lawyer accused Leissner of two-timing his wife, Kimora, by marrying another woman.

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Leissner was arrested in 2016 and charged with stealing over $200 million from 1Malaysia Development Berhad.

In 2018, he plead guilty to fraud charges and forfeited $43 million. He agreed to cooperate as the key witness for the federal government's case against Ng, the banker who fleeced Goldman's Malaysia division.

"Tim Leissner uses people," Ng's defense attorney Marc Agnifilo told jurors on Monday in his opening statement in Brooklyn federal court, according to Bloomberg.

Agnifilo alleged that Leissner also had an "illicit" relationship with Jasmine Loo, who was general counsel at 1MDB. Loo fled Malaysia and is wanted by authorities there for her role in the scheme.

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Ng's defense attorney told the jury that Leissner and Loo developed a "dark trust because of their illicit, intimate romantic relationship."

Leissner "uses women, he uses false intimacy, and now he's trying to use my client to get him to do his jail time," according to Agnifilo.

Leissner is testifying against Ng in exchange for a reduced sentence. Ng faces life in prison if convicted.

Tim and Kimora allegedly separated to protect her assets.

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Mount Holyoke College

A former art professor in Massachusetts pleaded guilty to attempting to kill a female colleague who rejected her advances.

Rie Hachiyanagi, left, a former art professor at Mount Holyoke College, pleaded guilty to charges of three counts of armed assault with intent to kill Lauret Savoy, who she "loved for many years."

Hachiyanagi, 50, reportedly went to Savoy's home and claimed she was distressed over a breakup and needed emotional support.

When Savoy let her inside her home, Hachiyanagi punched Savoy, knocking her to the floor. She straddled Savoy and told her she loved her for many years and that Savoy should have known that.

Hachiyanagi then attacked the older woman with a rock, a fire poker and pruning shears.

The torture session lasted for four hours until Savoy managed to convince Hachiyanagi to call 911 by telling her that she shared her amorous feelings.

Once emergency responders arrived, Hachiyanagi told them that she tried to save Savoy and that she found her "barely breathing".

In an emotional testimony in court on Friday, Savoy, who was over 60 at the time of the attack, said she suffered permanent injuries with long-lasting emotional trauma.

Savoy told the court that she suffered nerve damage to her face, and two of her fingers no longer work properly. She said that she has trouble sleeping, has nightmares, and suffers from daily headaches.

Hachiyanagi will be sentenced on October 20.
 
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Nicki Minaj's husband has pleaded guilty for failing to register as a sex offender in California, and is now awaiting his prison sentence.

Kenneth "Zoo" Petty entered the guilty plea during a virtual hearing with the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California on Thursday, according to PEOPLE.

His sentencing is scheduled for January 24, 2022, during which he faces 10 years in prison and a lifetime of supervised release.

Petty was convicted in 1995 of attempting to rape a 16-year-old girl and he spent over four years in jail for his crime.

He's registered in NY as a level 2 offender, which means he's considered a "moderate risk of repeat offense". Earlier this year, he sued to get his name removed from the sex offender registry in NY.

He was arrested in March 2020 for failure to register as a sex offender when he and Nicki moved to California.

At the time, he pleaded not guilty and posted $100,000 bail.

Best Image / BACKGRID

Nicki, 38, and Kenneth, 43, married in October 2019 and welcomed a son together in September 2020.

In unrelated news, Nicki has reached out to the younger generation to collaborate with her on new music.

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The "Super Bass" rapper called on singers Kehlani, 26, (pictured) and Summer Walker, 25, to harmonize on new tracks, and the ladies are totally down to team up with her.

Nicki previewed one track on social media on Tuesday night. On Wednesday, she name-dropped several songstresses on Twitter - including Keke Wyatt, Tamar Braxton, and Brandy - "to redo" the vocals from the snippet.

Nicki tweeted she would "love to hear people who can really do it".

She also shared that she'd love guest vocals from Summer, Jhene Aiko, and Kehlani, writing they "can be good in the blend as well with their harmonies".

Summer responded, "I'd love that," and Nicki responded:

"Ok puddin pop. Love you. Dm (direct message) it or post it when u (you) want."

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Instagram.com

Ramon Abbas, an Instagram influencer from Nigeria, has pleaded guilty to defraud victims out of at least $24 million using email "phishing" scams.

Abbas, 37, was arrested in June in Dubai and extradited to Chicago to face money laundering and wire fraud charges.

Video shows a stunned Abbas in police custody inside his luxury 2-story Versace penthouse with its own pool and jacuzzi in Dubai. A childhood friend visiting him from Nigeria was briefly detained and released by special operations forces and Emerati police officers in June.

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Instagram

Abbas now faces up to 20 years in prison in the US, after being extradited to Chicago then California last year.

Abbas and his crew hacked into computer systems after unsuspecting victims clicked on phishing links in emails. They then monitored the victims' emails looking for invoices or sales statements.

Abbas and his crew changed the banking info in the invoices, then siphoned the money into their own accounts. Victims included individuals and banks. The thieves stole $1 million meant for a children's hospital in Qatar.

Abbas cultivated an Internet persona that made him an Instagram star around the globe. He often wore expensive designer clothing, shoes and backpacks. His fleet of luxury automobiles worth $3 million were seized by police.

His lawyers told a judge that Abbas is the father of five children, including a child who lives with his mother in Virginia. But the judge ordered Abbas detained until his trial. Abbas was not allowed to stay with a girlfriend's uncle in Homewood, Illinois, because he was considered a flight risk.

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The federal prosecutor said Abbas "never visited" the girlfriend or their child in the United States and there is no evidence that he has ever even met this 'uncle.'

Abbas' lawyer said his client is a social media influencer who earned his millions legally by promoting high end luxury brands like Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Fendi on Instagram.
 


 

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Actor Drake Bell pleaded guilty to one count of attempted child endangerment involving a minor girl in Ohio.

The former child actor and singer appeared via Zoom at the Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas in Cleveland on Wednesday.

Fox 8 News previously reported that the victim, now 15, accused Bell of inappropriate conduct that took place in Cleveland on Dec. 1, 2017. The victim filed a police report in December 2018.

Fox 8 Cleveland reports that Bell engaged the minor girl in an inappropriate chat that "at times, was sexual in nature."

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Bell, real name Jared Drake Bell, pleaded guilty to one count of disseminating material harmful to juveniles, a 4th degree felony. The charge carries a maximum sentence of 6 to 18 months in prison and/or a fine of up to $5,000.

Judge Timothy McCormick informed Bell that prison time is not mandatory but if he is sentenced to prison time he'd be subjected to three years of probation.

The Nickelodeon star was arrested on June 3 in Cleveland. He posted a $2,500 bond and was released from the Cuyahoga County Jail.

"All facts will be revealed in a courtroom," Bell's attorney Ian Friedman said on June 4 -- which likely explains why Bell copped a plea to avoid a trial.

Child molestation victims took to social media to complain that Bell was being handled with kid gloves (no pun intended) because he is a celebrity.

Bell's sentencing hearing is scheduled for July 12.

Bell, left, is pictured with actor/comedian Josh Peck, right, at Nickelodeon's 18th Annual Kids Choice Awards in 2005.

Nikki Nelson / WENN


 

Correction: An earlier version of this post incorrectly stated the victim was a boy.

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Bryshere Gray, who played Lucious Lyon's prodigal son Hakeem Lyon on Fox TV's "Empire", will do jail time for beating his girlfriend nearly unconscious.

Gray entered a guilty plea in his domestic violence case - and the plea deal includes jail time.

According to new legal docs, obtained by TMZ, Gray pled guilty to felony aggravated assault stemming from a violent incident at his Arizona home in July 2020.

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As part of his plea agreement, he will serve 10 days in the county jail alongside murderers, purse snatchers, and other hoodlums. After he is released, he will serve three years on probation.

Gray was also ordered to pay restitution to his ex-girlfriend. He must also enroll in a domestic violence offender treatment program.

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During his probation, Gray won't be allowed to touch liquor or illegal drugs and he'll also submit to drug and alcohol testing.

The 27-year-old Sagittarius and his sister grew up in West Philadelphia with a single mother.

AR Photo/Splash News

The aspiring rapper worked three jobs to help his mother pay the bills. He was fired from a job at Pizza Hut after he was caught writing rap lyrics while on the clock.

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One of two girls charged with killing Uber Eats driver Mohammad Anwar in Washington, DC, took a plea deal this week, according to published reports.

The 15-year-old carjacker pleaded guilty to the murder of 66-year-old Anwar, an Uber Eats delivery driver, who was thrown from his car and killed during an attempted carjacking on March 23.

In return for pleading guilty to murder, prosecutors agreed to drop other charges - armed carjacking, robbery and aggravated reckless driving, DailyMail.com reported.

She will be sentenced on June 4 and, as part of the plea deal, will serve a maximum of six years in a juvenile detention center, until she is 21.

Court proceedings for minors are closed to the public and their criminal records are sealed for life.

A 13-year-old accomplice was also charged as a juvenile in the crime.

The girls targeted the father-of-three as he delivered food for Uber Eats in the southeast section of D.C.

Chilling cell phone video shows Anwar leaning halfway out of his car, telling a bystander "they're kids", as the oldest girl sped off -- with Anwar still holding on to the steering wheel.

Seconds later, the car lost control, overturned and crashed, throwing Anwar from the vehicle. He died from severe head injuries.

As the victim lay dying, one of the teens is overheard saying her cell phone was still in the car.
 

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A former U.S. postal service employee plead guilty to stealing gift cards and cash from U.S. mail letters.

Markeyta McAllister, 30, pleaded guilty on Dec. 17 to Obstruction of United States Mail for stealing thousands of dollars in cash and gift cards between July 7, 2014 to December 3, 2019.

"While most U.S. Postal Service employees serve Americans with integrity and honesty – McAllister did not," said U.S. Attorney Byung J. 'BJay' Pak. "By opening peoples' mail to steal money and gift cards, McAllister betrayed both the citizens she supposedly served and the reputation of her fellow employees."

Pak says McAllister, of Jefferson, Georgia, opened mailed letters to steal prepaid Visa gift cards and cash from letters addressed to residents in Duluth, Georgia, where she worked at a U.S. mail facility.

McAllister later used the stolen gift cards at stores such as Kroger and Walmart.

After pleading guilty, McAllister confirmed that she "fully underst[ood] that it is a crime, punishable by fine or imprisonment, or both, to knowingly or willfully obstruct or delay the mail, or to steal or attempt to steal mail of any kind."

Stock photo: All-In-Media / BACKGRID

A Georgia woman pleaded guilty to fraudulently collecting disability payments while working at a DeKalb County strip club.

Valencia D. Williams, 31, worked nights stripping for money under the name "Chrissy the Doll," federal prosecutors say.

The Lithonia resident told the Social Security Administration she was bedridden due to severe anxiety and depression and she was unable to work.

Williams pleaded guilty to Social Security fraud after it was determined she collected over $60,000 in disability benefits that she was not entitled to, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Williams applied for benefits in July 2010, citing major depression and a panic disorder that prevented her from working or even leaving her home, prosecutors said.

After her benefits began rolling in, Williams applied for an adult entertainment permit in 2014 and took a job dancing at Strokers Adult Entertainment Club in Clarkston, Ga.

Authorities say she danced until 4 a.m., taking home thousands of dollars in tips per week. A search of county public records shows she obtained adult entertainment permits each year through 2018.

"The Social Security Administration's (Supplemental Security Income) program is intended for individuals whose income is below the federal poverty guidelines, who are truly disabled, and cannot engage in work activity," U.S. Attorney Byung J. "BJay" Pak said, according to the AJC.

"Williams was able to work and therefore she was not disabled. Moreover, the income she received by working would have likely rendered her ineligible for SSI. By getting SSI when she did not qualify, she stole money from the most needy members of our communities: the poor and the disabled."

Williams sentencing hearing is scheduled for May 26.

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Kellen Winslow II pleaded guilty to 2 felony counts of rape and waived his right to a retrial before opening statements were set to begin on Monday, Nov. 4.

The former NY Jets tight end was set to be retried on Monday after a jury was hopelessly deadlocked on multiple counts of felony rape in the first trial in June.

Winslow pleaded guilty to the rape of a 17-year-old girl when he was 19. Winslow hesitated to plead guilty several times in court. "I'm not pressuring you," said the judge. "You don't have to plead guilty and we can proceed with your trial."

Winslow ultimately pleaded guilty to count 6 and count 9 in exchange for a sentence of 12-18 years in prison.

"Your honor, I pray to God that you give me 12 [years] and I can go home to my family as soon as possible, your honor," said Winslow.

"You could get 18 years... do you understand that?" the judge responded.

Winslow will be held without bail pending sentencing in February 2020. The jury, who waited all day for the trial to begin, was called into the courtroom to be told the defendant pleaded guilty.

Winslow, 36, was previously convicted of raping a middle aged woman in Encinitas, California. He was also accused of 2 additional rapes and exposing himself to two other women.

The courtroom decorum was disrupted during a recess when Winslow's dad, NFL Hall of Fame tight end Kellen Winslow Sr., 61, yelled at the prosecutor for looking at him.

"Do not look over here!" Winslow Sr. shouted in the court room. Winslow Sr. was chastised for yelling and he was not present in court when his son pleaded guilty.

Winslow was convicted in June of forcible rape and misdemeanor indecent exposure and lewd conduct. But the jurors deadlocked on other charges related to the alleged rape of a 54-year-old hitchhiker in Encinitas.

Jane Doe #5 accepted a ride from Winslow, who took her behind a shopping center and allegedly raped her. The woman initially identified Winslow's attorney, who is also mixed race, as the man who raped her.

Winslow also allegedly raped a 17-year-old girl -- Jane Doe 4 -- in 2003 at a Scripps Ranch house party, according to ABC affiliate 10 News in San Diego.

Winslow, who is a married father of one, was acquitted of masturbating in front of Jane Doe 5 - a 77-year-old woman - at a Carlsbad, Calif. gym in February.

In his closing argument during the first trial, Deputy District Attorney Dan Owens told the jury that Winslow "took from these women what he wanted. Kellen Winslow took from these women again and again and again. This man took what he wanted from them and threw them away like trash because that's what he thought of them."