In federal court documents filed against the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills cast member and her estranged husband on Wednesday, a class-action firm has accused the couple of embezzling money from crash victims to protect both his firm and their pricey lifestyle.
On December 2, Page Six revealed Edelson PC filed a lawsuit against Erika, 49, and Thomas, 81, on behalf of victims of Lion Air Flight 610, who believe their settlement funds have been stolen.
Thomas and his firm, Girardi Keese, “are on the verge of financial collapse and locked in a downward spiral of mounting debts and dwindling funds” and his “need to fund outrageous lifestyles for himself and his soon-to-be ex-wife Erika Jayne,” is the reason behind her November divorce filing, the lawsuit explained.
“While Erika publicly filed for divorce this month, on information and belief, that ‘divorce’ is 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 GK,” the suit continued, noting that this isn’t the first time Thomas has been accused of pocketing money meant for his clients.
He “continues to use that money to find his and Erika’s lavish lifestyle, release personal guarantees, pay down loans, route the money to friends and family and satisfy other outstanding debts,” according to court documents.
Also in the lawsuit, Erika’s single, “Exxpen$ive,” and her claims of spending $40,000 a month on her appearance, were noted as reasons behind her and Thomas’ alleged embezzlement of the victims’ funds.
Following Erika’s divorce filing last month, the RHOBH star released a statement.
“After much consideration, I have decided to end my marriage to Tom Girardi,” she told E! News. “This is not a step taken lightly or easily. I have great love and respect for Tom and for our years and the lives we built together.”
“It is my absolute wish to proceed through this process with respect and with the privacy that both Tom and I deserved,” Erika continued. “I request others give us that privacy as well.”
The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills is expected to return to Bravo sometime next year for season 11.