Erika Jayne claims she didn't know husband Tom Girardi gave her $20 million in loans from his law firm: 'I was kept away from the books'
The cast confronted Jayne about a Los Angeles Times expose published in December 2020 that detailed her and husband Tom Girardi's divorce and crumbling empire after Girardi was accused of embezzling millions from the widows and orphans of plane-crash victims his firm represented in a settlement.
The article also mentioned an allegation, first made in a 2019 court filing by a company that had once loaned money to Girardi's law firm, Girardi Keese, that Girardi had transferred $20 million in loans from funds taken from his firm to Jayne's entertainment company. (This allegation was also featured in the June ABC News special "The Housewife and the Hustler.")
Sutton Stracke directly asked Jayne - who split from Girardi in November - about the lawsuit at Kyle Richards' Christmas dinner, calling it the "$20 million elephant in the room."
"Why is the paper saying that $20 million went into your LLC?" she continued.
"The obvious question is, did you know any of this?" Richards chimed in. "As your friend, I don't think you did."
"No, I did not," Jayne replied.
Stracke continued to question Jayne, saying: "I have several LLCs, if that money did go in there, it seems like you would notice maybe, or question that."
"I was kept away from the books," Jayne replied.
"Even your own LLC? That would make me insane," Stracke said.
"It did," Jayne shot back.
ayne also addressed how Girardi had testified in September 2020 that he lost "about $80 million, or $50 million in cash."
"One of the lawyers said, 'Where's the money?' I said, 'Go talk to Tom,'" Jayne told her costars. "My point is this. I didn't know that. No one knows the answer but him."
"Where does $80 million go?" Lisa Rinna asked her.
"That's a question only he can answer," Jayne replied.
Jayne also touched on Girardi's mental state. In previous "RHOBH" episodes, she said the famed personal-injury attorney's personality "completely changed" after he drove off a cliff in 2017 and was unconscious for 12 hours.
A psychiatrist diagnosed Girardi with dementia and late-onset Alzheimer's disease earlier this year in a sworn declaration submitted to the court. The mental assessment was part of Girardi's brother's petition to become his permanent conservator.
"I think what has happened to Tom here is that he's not mentally capable, and he's in sole control of his firm," Jayne said. "I think that we're dealing with is a man who is diminished capacity in control, and not doing the right thing. Because if he stole the money, I'd like to know where it is. You know, that's the truth."
Jayne also told her costars that she believed "the victims need to be taken care of."
"I'm not worried about me, I'm last in all of this," she continued. "Those people are owed their money. But we need to see what this man did."
In July, a judge ruled that Jayne was liable to pay three of her husband's former clients amid his bankruptcy case and accusations that he embezzled settlement money from them. Those clients are owed $11 million.
This week, Girardi's law firm - which filed for bankruptcy in December - began selling off all of its physical assets, including lacy red lingerie that Girardi had purchased and a package of "Erika Jayne Collectibles."