Basketball Wives star Brittish Williams is headed to federal prison for committing multiple counts of fraud.
A federal judge in St. Louis, Missouri, sentenced the reality star to four years in prison on Tuesday, Oct. 24, for tax fraud, bank fraud, and PPP loan fraud.
“Brittish Williams was getting paid to portray her celebrity lifestyle on Basketball Wives when in fact she was a typical fraudster,” FBI Special Agent in Charge Jay Greenberg said in a press release. “After today’s sentencing, her reality is now a life of a felon.”
Moments after the sentencing, Williams, 33, made headlines for an incident outside the courthouse.
Video posted on social media showed Williams, dressed in a blue blouse, black camisole and matching slacks, leaving court with a group of women.
A male reporter was recording the group with his phone, prompting a woman in a light blue gym outfit to raise a fist and lunge at the journalist.
STL Today reported the woman threatened reporter Ryan Krull, but did not strike him. The outlet published images of the woman confronting the reporter then covering her face with her jacket. Photographer Robert Cohen posted a picture of the incident on X, formerly known as Twitter.
A woman with the entourage of @Brittish2 threatens reporter @RyanWKrull after reality television star Brittish Williams (on phone) was sentenced to 4 years in federal prison on fraud charges in St. Louis. pic.twitter.com/DFG4vjtw5e
— Robert Cohen (@kodacohen) October 24, 2023
Krull is a staff writer at local alternative weekly the Riverfront Times. Despite nearly being assaulted, he quickly filed a news story on the sentencing hearing.
Williams, a St. Louis area radio personality, pleaded guilty on May 24, to 15 charges — five counts of misuse of a social security number; four counts of bank fraud; three counts of making false statements to the IRS; and three counts of wire fraud.
“British Williams has admitted an unusually large number of frauds that victimized taxpayers, banks, credit card companies, individuals and programs that were intended to help struggling businesses and employees during the COVID-19 pandemic,” U.S. Attorney Sayler A. Fleming said at the time. “This is a first step towards justice for those victims. We will also be seeking repayment of all of her ill-gotten gains.”
Following her guilty plea, Williams released a statement in a since-deleted Instagram post captured by The Shade Room and said she was “not ashamed.”
“Anything I’ve went through that a normal person would go through privately, I went through publicly. I hope my story, journey, and my growth can help someone going through something similar,” she wrote. “I am not ashamed, I am not phased by comments or opinions. I am proud of the woman and mother I am TODAY.”
Williams was indicted in September 2021, and initially pleaded not guilty before changing her plea.
Prosecutors said she under-reported her income on tax returns for 2017-2019 and falsely claimed a niece and nephew as dependents.
She was also accused of using false social security numbers in 2017 to obtain loans, lines of credit and other funds from banks and financial institutions. Additionally, prosecutors said she defrauded the federal Paycheck Protection Program.
Williams appeared on season three of VH1’s Basketball Wives LA in 2014 and returned to the franchise this year for season 10 of Basketball Wives, which concluded with the season finale in May.
In the below trailer for the season, Williams was shown wearing an ankle monitoring device and said, “I could go to jail.”