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Report: Erika Jayne’s Estranged Husband Tom Girardi To Plead The Fifth As Part Of Embezzlement Investigation, Refuses To Answer Questions About His Former Clients Missing Money!

Tom Girardi, the estranged husband of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Erika Jayne, is refusing to answer questions about his clients missing millions.

According to a report by via Radar Online, the lawyer representing the former 82-year-old lawyer dropped the bombshell news in court earlier this week.

Girardi was ordered to appear and answer questions about $2 million owed to his former clients. The once-respected lawyer represented family members who lost their loved ones in a plane crash.

The widows and orphans scored a settlement in the case but claim Girardi failed to pay them out in full. They filed a federal lawsuit accusing their former attorney of embezzling their money. In the lawsuit, they added Jayne as a defendant in the case accusing her of helping her then-husband steal their money.

The judge presiding over the federal lawsuit referred the matter for possible criminal investigation. He also found Girardi and his firm partners in contempt of court over the missing settlement money.

They believed the couple used the money to keep up their lavish lifestyle. During the hearing, the judge asked Girardi and his law firm bookkeeper David Lira plan if they planned to testify at the upcoming contempt hearing.

According to Radar Online, the lawyers representing Girardi and the bookkeeper told the judge their clients plan to invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

His attorney said Girardi was 82 and dealing with Alzheimer's disease. She said, “I don’t believe he would sufficiently, at least for any lengthy period of time."

She claims, “He does not recall one of my conversations with him between conversations.” In the past, Lira claimed he had no knowledge of where the money went.

As previously reported, it was revealed earlier this month that the Pretty Mess singer may have to repay settlement funds intended for her estranged husband’s former clients amid allegations that Tom’s firm gave Erika’s companies $20 million over the years. The Ruigomez family, who were featured in Hulu’s The Housewife and the Hustler, can pursue a collections lawsuit against Erika to obtain the $11 million they are owed from Tom.

“The Ruigomez Family, the Girardi Trustee, and the GK Trustee shall cooperate with each other with their collection efforts against Erika,” the court documents obtained by Us Weekly read.

Erika and Tom made headlines in November 2020 when the Bravo reality star filed for divorce after 20 years of marriage. The following month, the estranged couple was sued for fraud and embezzlement. 

In addition to accusing them of swindling $2 million in settlement funds intended for families of victims of a 2018 plane crash, class action firm Edelson PC claimed in federal court documents that the divorce was “simply a sham attempt to fraudulently protect Tom’s and Erika’s money from those that seek to collect on debts owed by Tom and his law firm.”

Tom faced a second lawsuit later that month, alleging that his company breached a written agreement and conversation with Wells Fargo Vendor Financial Services. The bank sought immediate payment on the $882,715 outstanding bill.

In September 2020, Tom told the court that he lost millions of dollars and has “no money” left. The 82-yar-old was placed under a temporary conservatorship in February when his brother assumed control of his daily activities and personal care. One of Tom’s attorneys claimed in court in December 2020 that he was hospitalized for a “serious illness,” raising questions about his mental competency. Court documents revealed in March that Tom was diagnosed with late-onset Alzheimer’s and dementia.

However, in July 2021, a judge ruled that some former clients of Tom can pursue a collections lawsuit against Erika. According to court records obtained by PEOPLE, Tom's former clients, Joseph Ruigomez, Jaime Ruigomez, and Kathleen Ruigomez, will be able to collect the $11 million they are owed by him per a 2020 litigation. 

According to court docs, Erika revealed that she “has nothing to hide” and has already expressed a “full willingness to cooperate and produce” documents to the court. In newly filed documents via Radar Online, the Bravo reality star said she will turn over all bank and financial records. However, she wants the lawyers to agree to not leak the documents.


Photo Credit: Bravo Media/NBCUniversal; Getty Images