Prosecutors believe Thomas Girardi is “exaggerating” symptoms of dementia and using “purposeful manipulation” to avoid going to trial and facing charges related to the reported $18 million he embezzled from clients from 2010 to 2020.
In new court documents filed against the disbarred attorney, 84, who is in the midst of a divorce from Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Erika Jayne, 52, prosecutors claim videos prove Thomas is being dishonest about his medical state as they demand he show up to court to stand trial.
“Less than one month after the bankruptcy proceedings were initiated, and criminal and State Bar referrals were made by federal and state judges, defendant’s brother filed a petition in Los Angeles Superior Court to have a conservator appointed, alleging that defendant could no longer care for himself or his estate. Without the benefit of any adversarial testing, the petition was subsequently granted mere months later,” prosecutors explained in documents obtained by Radar Online on August 21.
As RHOBH fans will recall, Thomas and his law firm, Girardi Keese, were forced into bankruptcy in late 2020, and shortly thereafter, in early 2021, his brother, Robert Girardi, was appointed as his conservator due to Thomas’ alleged dementia and Alzheimer’s. But as prosecutors claim, Thomas’ diagnoses may not be legitimate.
“Now, after being criminally indicted for his [years-long] scheme, defendant attempts to avoid being held to account for his conduct by petitioning this Court to find him incompetent to stand trial,” they note. “However, despite defendant’s asserted incompetence, evidence of his normal routine immediately leading up to the demise of GK –- years after defendant claims his purported mental competency issues began –- demonstrates that his instant ‘symptoms’ are exaggerated – an artfully constructed self-serving portrait of a figure purportedly so diminished as to be beyond the legal system’s reach.”
According to the prosecutors’ court documents, Thomas, who currently resides in a senior living facility, seemed to be just fine, from a mental standpoint, in the months leading up to his conservatorship.
“He went to his law firm nearly every day and worked on multiple cases, negotiated loans to keep [Girardi Keese] afloat, sat for multiple depositions and interviews, and even moderated a panel discussion with other attorneys,” they stated. “Only after defendant’s creditors started closing in when an escape hatch was needed most, was the issue of [Girardi’s] mental competency first raised.”
“His purposeful manipulation of these proceedings to avoid the consequences of a trial in this matter directly demonstrate how cunning and capable he truly is,” prosecutors added.
An August 23 report from Radar Online also discussed the case, signaling to the many lawsuits filed against Thomas months prior to his diagnosis.
“As the pressure mounted from these multiple civil lawsuits, GK was forced into involuntary bankruptcy by mid-December 2020. Facing an avalanche of civil liability and potential criminal exposure, defendant’s response shifted from the facts of his alleged wrongdoing to his purported diminished mental state,” prosecutors wrote in court documents.
In addition to Thomas’s longtime secretary testifying that she never questioned his mental state, prosecutors have obtained video of Girardi in 2019 and 2020, which includes Thomas “regaling his ex-wife and her friends with stories of his trials and his encounters with celebrities” in late 2019 and discussing his career.
Prosecutors also have a voicemail from Thomas in which he discussed “negligence” and asked if he was at fault.
“These voicemails make clear that defendant’s short-term memory, and his general appreciation of outstanding legal matters, are intact,” the documents read.
Although Erika has insisted that she was unaware of Thomas’ crimes, his bankruptcy trustee sued her for $25 million in 2022.
The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills season 13 is expected to premiere on Bravo sometime this fall.