Are Erika Jayne and her husband using divorce to cover up embezzlement?
After her infamous split from ex-husband Tom Girardi, Erika Jayne is again making the headlines, but this time it’s for all the wrong reasons.
The forty-nine-year-old Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star floored everyone when she decided to end her twenty-one-year-old marriage with the high-powered attorney Tom Girardi. Jayne explained in an exclusive report on E! that she has decided to separate from her husband Girard “after much consideration”.
The “Exxpen$ive” singer added, “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 deserve. I request others give us that privacy as well.”
An Us Weekly insider source said their different career paths contributed to their separation, with Girardi being a mega lawyer and Jayne being on Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. Reports also said the couple would sometimes go “several months” without seeing each other and would insist on traveling separately.
According to the source, “Tom gave Erika a very lavish lifestyle, and she enjoyed it,” but then “Erika has gained independence and confidence from being on Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. The exposure it has given for her singing career has given Erika a much larger fan base.”
Jayne officially filed for divorce on November 3rd and mentioned “irreconcilable differences” as the cause for their separation.
According to Reuters, The now-estranged couple is being sued for “misappropriating settlement funds” that belong to victims of the Lion Air crash to support their “outrageous lifestyles”.
The lawsuit accuses Jayne’s husband Girardi, who is a prominent personal injury lawyer, of embezzling money from clients, including the “widows & orphans” of the Lion Air Flight 610 crash. According to court documents obtained by Insider, the suit claims that Erika Jayne’s divorce from husband Tom Girardi is a “sham” to cover their tracks.
The class-action law firm Edelson PC who filed the complaint against Girardi alleges that his divorce is a “sham attempt to fraudulently protect Tom and Erika’s money from those that seek to collect on debts owed by Tom and his law firm.”
The firm went on to claim the pair “are on the verge of financial collapse” and are “locked in a downward spiral of mounting debts and dwindling funds”.
Girardi’s law firm represented the victims of Lion Air Flight 610 whose Boeing 737 Max plane took off from Jakarta’s Soekarno–Hatta International Airport, Indonesia on October 29th, 2018, at 6:20 a.m. and in just thirteen minutes after its ascent, the plane plunged into the Java Sea killing all 189 passengers along with the crew on board.
The lawsuit further alleges that Boeing transferred confidential settlements to Girardi’s law firm, Girardi Keese, however, those funds were never issued to the victims’ kin. Instead, Girardi kept the funds “for his own purposes” and forked it out “to his friends and family, including Erika”.
According to Edelson PC, defendant Girardi is “at the heart of this deception” because of his need to hold on to his “celebrity status in the glitz-and-glam world of Hollywood and Beverly Hills”. The complaint also states that “to keep up their celebrity status” Girardi and Erika Jayne have to “project a public image of obscene wealth at all times, and at whatever the cost”.
Though neither Jayne nor Girardi have officially responded to the lawsuit, Jayne has posted a cryptic message on her social media which is thought to be a response to the drama surrounding her. The RHOBH star posted a stunning picture of herself wearing an asymmetrical black gown with the caption “High Drama”.