‘Real Housewives of Beverly Hills’ star Erika Jayne and her husband are exposed In ABC News Original’s ‘The Housewife and the Hustler’. The documentary delves into the shady practices of Tom Girardi, known in legal circles as a shark, and in reality television circles as Real Housewife, Erika Jayne’s husband.
As news of Erika and Tom’s suspiciously timed and sudden divorce hits the housewives, the documentary hits screens with alleged victims telling of their experiences after hiring Girardi as their lawyer. Here are just three victims’ accounts, all featured in The Housewife and the Hustler.
‘Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills’: ‘The Housewife and the Hustler’ Doco Sheds Light on Erika Jayne’s “Snake” Husband
Joe Ruigomez was severely burned in 2010’s San Bruno gas pipeline explosion. According to the Ruigomez’s family, Girardi was very comforting upon their first meeting, but soon became a “snake” as he “basically robbed” Ruigomez of the millions of dollars he had won in the settlement.
Girardi did this by offering to manage Ruigomez’s funds, writing in a letter to his family, “The primary reason I am trying to manage the young man’s funds is so that nothing goes wrong.”
But things went wrong.
Ruigomez’s supposed regular payments were not being made on time and calls to Girardi, asking where his money was, went unanswered. By 2017 the thus far irregular payments “disappeared completely.”
After the Ruigomez family filed a lawsuit, Girardi was made to pay $12 million, signing a document saying he would make a $1 million payment and a $2.5 million payment a few months later. Girardi “never got to the second payment,” Ruigomez’s mother claimed.
After returning to the courts yet again, Tom was deposed, and the family is said to be “among the first in line to collect their settlement money from the bankruptcy” case.
Josie Hernandez became Girardi’s client in 2014 after several surgeries were needed for a failed incontinence implant that made her sick. Though her case settled for $135,000, Hernandez claimed that 6 years later, in August 2020 she still hadn’t seen a penny.
In the documentary, Hernandez plays voicemails Girardi left for her after she continually asked for her settlement. Repeatedly he assured the woman he was working hard to get the funds saying, “I’m in your corner. … I’m a good guy, by the way.”
After Hernandez filed an official complaint with the California Bar Association, she learned Girardi has received the settlement money four months before he’d left the voicemails. Hernandez still hasn’t received her settlement. She called the ex-lawyer “unbelievably cruel”.
Bias Ramadhan’s mother, Hasnawati, died in the Lion Air, October 2018, Boeing 737 MAX crash. If losing his mother and going through a lawsuit wasn’t harrowing enough, Ramadhan described what happened after winning their case in court “emotionally draining.”
Though Ramadhan and his three siblings communicated with Girardi’s office weekly, asking about the settlement money, not a dime reached the orphaned children. “We are the victims here. Not him, not Tom, not his wife,” Ramadhan bemoaned, saying the family doesn’t know when, or if, they will see a cent.
Girardi has since been disbarred and stripped of his license to practice law. This came after being diagnosed with advance Alzhemier’s. His law firm has also been disbanded with his partners parting ways with Girardi.
The Housewife and the Hustler doco also includes audio of Tom’s September 23, 2020, deposition tape, in which the former lawyer admits to being broke. Unfortunately for Girardi, his wealth has been splashed all over television, making his statement slightly hard to believe. Girardi’s wife, Erika has been subpoenaed to give a deposition about the couple’s finances however two 2020 hearing dates were postponed.
Erika’s name is officially listed in the company files as Girardi’s secretary and many are intrigued to know how much she knew of her husband’s embezzlement of victim’s settlement funds. Trustees have been ordered to dig into Erika with Class action firm Edelson PC saying they are watching this current Real Housewives season closely to see if she slips up in any way.
The divorce from her husband was a huge shock to her Beverly Hills Housewives co-stars. Considering Erika was speaking so highly of her husband when she and her fellow housewives were recently on a trip to Lake Tahoe, the divorce looks to be a way for Erika to split the couple’s assets so, as Girardi is bled dry, Erika can continue living the high life.
Not one to want to give up her glam team so a burns victim can pay his medical bills, Erika has been vocal about the luxury items that were “gifts to her” and “thus separate property” from her soon to be ex-husband’s.
Erika has yet to be legally charged with anything, but with an alleged $20 million loan Erika took from Girardi’s company, she is exceedingly entwined in the firm. It’s doubtful she will get away from the proceedings unscathed.
It will be interesting to see how the abrupt divorce between Erika and Tom plays out on this season of the Bravo show.
Is Erika going to play that she is leaving her husband because of his shady business dealings, therefore incriminating herself in embezzling money from victims of plane crashes, or is she going to risk looking like a monster, divorcing a husband who has recently been diagnosed with a terminal and horrific disease.
Likely Erika will spin it to be somewhere in between.
The Housewife and the Hustler is currently streaming on Hulu and The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills airs Wednesday nights at 9pm ET on Bravo!
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