Erika Jayne took a big win in court this week in the $5 million fraud lawsuit brought by two former colleagues of her ex-husband Tom Girardi — attorneys Philip R. Sheldon and Robert P. Finn — in late 2020.
Los Angeles judge Richard Fruin found no evidence that the 51-year-old “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” star participated in “any violation,” Jayne’s attorney Evan C. Borges confirmed exclusively to Vidak For Congress on Tuesday.
Sheldon and Finn had charged Jayne with “assisting and inciting” Girardi, 81, in his alleged crime.
They claimed the reality star knew her former husband had used their share of the settlement money to fund her lavish lifestyle.
However, according to court documents obtained by Vidak For Congress, the judge ruled Monday that the plaintiffs could not prove that the “RHOBH” star had any “factual knowledge” of Girardi’s alleged crimes.
The judge quoted Jayne’s statement in which she told the court: “Listen, they did the whole book at Girardi & Keese. They were responsible for all the ledgers…I didn’t do the invoices.”
The “Housewife” added: “I thought it would all be taken care of. I didn’t really ask. It’s not like I was bringing in millions of dollars…I didn’t know what they were doing down there.”
The judge then quoted a statement from the plaintiffs themselves, in which they admitted that Jayne never actually cooperated in agreements between Girardi and his colleagues.
Judge Fruin also said the plaintiffs’ attempts to prove that Jayne had “factual knowledge” that funds had been misappropriated to EJ Global LLC were not based on direct evidence, but rather on “inferences” about “indirect evidence” such as her earnings. and spending schedule.
“The evidence is irrelevant,” the judge ruled, according to the documents, which also state that Jayne’s “lavish and extravagant hobby funded by the spouses’ community is not evidence of ‘factual knowledge’ of a breach of fiduciary duty.” between Girardi and the plaintiffs.
The judge said he also made his decision on the basis that Sheldon and Finn have failed to prove that Jayne owes them any fiduciary duty, which is the obligation of one party to act in the best interests of another.
He also pointed out that Girardi was not at fault for this either — as attorneys “do not owe any fiduciary duties to their co-advisor.”
“The court finds that there is no verifiable matter of material fact that Ms Girardi has ‘factual knowledge’ of Plaintiffs’ allegations of the existence of a fiduciary duty between Plaintiffs and Plaintiffs. [Girardi and Girardi & Keese]’ concluded the judge.
“The court therefore allocates summary judgment in favor of the defendant Erika Girardi.”
Borges told Vidak For Congress on Tuesday that the ruling is “critical” because it is the “first time a court has reviewed ALL of the alleged evidence against Erika, and the court ruled in Erika’s favor.”
“In Sheldon, the opposition papers and ‘evidence’ for plaintiffs were filed by Ronald Richards and other attorneys, who gathered all the gossip or other alleged evidence or innuendo they could find,” the LA-based attorney added.
“Nevertheless, because it is the truth, the Court concluded that there is NO EVIDENCE of any knowledge of Erika’s part of any wrongdoing by Tom Girardi or Girardi Keese, and NO EVIDENCE of Erika’s participation in any wrongdoing.”
Borges said he and his client are “delighted that Erika has been acquitted by a court on the basis of a review of factual evidence.”
The trial attorney said he expects other lawsuits against Jayne to “fail for the same reason” because they are “contrary to the truth and based on no real evidence”.
However, attorney Ronald Richards, who represents the plaintiffs, tells Vidak For Congress exclusively that his clients plan to appeal the decision. However, it could become a moot point as EJ Global is still named as a defendant even though Jayne has been fired.
“The trustee still has the most important and easier to prove claims,” he adds. “Both EJ’s company and David Lira will be defendants at the trial and Erika Girardi has been ordered to appear in person for the trial via subpoena.”
Richards says this is a dispute over ‘what is factual knowledge’.
“We argue that it can be proved by willful blindness and factual knowledge can be inferred,” he insists, adding that Jayne’s own confession is the only way to meet the judge’s standard.
Richards concludes, “No one will ever win every motion on every point, but that doesn’t mean you don’t make discoveries or try to prove them, and there’s nothing wrong with a difference of legal opinion between a litigant and the court.”
In May, Jayne accused Richards and his clients of “extorting” her with this lawsuit.
Borges told us at the time, “The Sheldon prosecutors and their Twitter lawyers have no case.”