- Real Housewives of Beverly Hills -Updates On Tom Girardi's Alleged Victims From 'The Housewife & The Hustler'
We've all been watching Real Housewives of Beverly Hills for one thing and one thing only: Crystal's "ugly leather pants." Just kidding — Erika! That's all we want to see is the legal drama Erika and Tom Girardi are currently facing (and have been embroiled in) this past year. But what about the alleged victims currently suing Girardi? Part of ABC News' new documentary special, The Housewife and the Hustler, aims to switch the focus from Erika's glamour to Tom Girardi's alleged victims and where they are now. And it will definitely change the way you watch RHOBH. Seriously, not even Erika's divorce text can distract from the allegations against her estranged husband detailed in this doc. (The Dipp reached out to both Erika and Tom's legal representation and did not hear back in time for publication.)
The Housewife and the Hustler features sit-down interviews with a handful of Girardi's alleged victims, many of whom raise questions about Erika's knowledge or involvement in Girardi's alleged crimes. (Erika has denied any knowledge of her estranged husband's work dealings.) And, based on where Tom Girardi's alleged victims are now — waiting for settlement money Girardi allegedly stole from them — it seems like Erika's legal troubles won't stop at her divorce.
At 19, Joe Ruigomez suffered life-threatening burn injuries after a gas pipeline explosion destroyed his home in 2010. Eight people were killed in the explosion, including Joe's girlfriend, and Girardi reportedly approached the Ruigomez family to represent them in a case against PG&E. According to Joe, when Girardi eventually settled the case with PG&E in 2013, he offered to invest the money for Joe and set up a payment plan instead of giving Joe the settlement money in a trust account.
In the documentary, Joe claims that Girardi soon became difficult to reach and stopped sending money in 2017. Eventually, the Ruigomez family filed a lawsuit, and Girardi was set to pay them $12 million, but allegedly only made one $1 million payment. After that, the Ruigomez family took Girardi back to court, and it was during a deposition for this case that Girardi admitted he was broke. At the same time, Erika filed for divorce, and the legalities continued to get more and more complicated.
Joe, who has a lifetime of surgery ahead of him, is currently waiting for Girardi's bankruptcy proceedings to move forward, and will be among the first victims to receive his payment once Girardi's estate has been liquidated. His mother and her friend and fellow Girardi victim Kim Archie run a website where former Girardi clients can lodge their complaints.
Bias Ramadhan's mother, Hasnawati, died in the 2018 Lion Air Flight 610 crash. He was one of the many family members of victims who were represented by Girardi in a case against Boeing, which was settled in 2020. According to reports, Ramadhan is still owed his share of the $1.2 million settlement he was awarded.
Ramdhan's is one of four families of Lion Air Flight 610 victims who were represented by Girardi — none of whom received any settlement money. Together, they filed a lawsuit against Girardi, and this eventually led to the lawsuit accusing Erika Jayne and her husband of fraud.
In 2014, Hernandez hired Girardi to help in a medical malpractice claim. He settled her case for $135,000, and in 2020, after she filed a complaint with the California Bar Association, it was confirmed that Tom had received the payment. Hernandez claims she hasn't seen any of it.
After Girardi was diagnosed with Alzheimer's and dementia in March, he was placed under a conservatorship managed by his brother, Robert, which has only complicated matters in his bankruptcy and divorce proceedings. Meanwhile, Erika's role on RHOBH, which largely consists of flaunting her wealth, continues to upset Girardi's alleged victims. If Erika was hoping a divorce could keep her away from these lawsuits, she's in for a rude awakening.
Image: ABC News screenshot via Hulu