Erika Jayne Can Be Sued by Husband's Embezzlement Victims, Judge Rules

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Erika Jayne
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Erika Jayne could be facing a new legal battle in the future. On Tuesday, a judge ruled that former clients of Jayne's estranged husband, Tom Girardi, are allowed to pursue a collections lawsuit against the reality star.

Girardi's former clients, Joseph Ruigomez, Jaime Ruigomez and Kathleen Ruigomez, were awarded $11 million in a lawsuit against Girardi last year. However, the judge put a hold on collections against Girardi's assets and those belonging to his law firm, Girardi Keese, when they filed for bankruptcy later in the year, amid an investigation into their finances by an appointed bankruptcy trustee.

However, the judge's latest ruling, according to court documents obtained by ET on Wednesday, gives the Ruigomez family the green light to file a lawsuit to collect the $11 million from Girardi's estranged wife.

The development comes after the bankruptcy trustee investigating Girardi's assets discovered in June that Jayne's businesses have been given over $20 million in loans from Girardi Keese over the span of multiple years.

"All assets identified by the Ruigomez family shall be subject to all rights of the Girardi bankruptcy estate and the [Girardi Keese] bankruptcy estate, which parties shall meet and confer in good faith to determine the character/ownership of the identified assets," the latest court documents decree. "The Ruigomez Family, the Girardi Trustee and the GK Trustee shall cooperate with each other with their collection efforts against Erika."

ET has reached out to Jayne's reps for comment.

The Ruigomez family's claims and legal battle with Girardi were among several scandals examined in the recent ABC News documentary The Housewife and the Hustler, which explored the allegations of embezzlement against Jayne and Girardi, and the lawsuit filed against the pair in December on behalf of several families who lost loved ones in the Lion Air Flight 610 crash, which occurred in October 2018.

According to that suit, Girardi allegedly embezzled settlement money that was supposed to go to the family members of the victims. Girardi and Jayne are accused of using that money to fund their own lavish lifestyles and allegedly pay off loans to keep Girardi's law firm afloat.

In February, Girardi was placed under a temporary conservatorship. In March, a psychiatrist told courts that Girardi suffers from Alzheimer's disease, and that he is unable to care for his own personal or financial matters.

In June, Jayne's attorneys filed a motion to withdraw as her lawyers in Girardi’s Chapter 7 bankruptcy case, shortly before the trustee filed the motion regarding the $20 million in loans to Jayne's businesses. Subsequently, the court ordered the reality star's divorce lawyer, Larry Ginsburg, accountant, Michael Ullman, and landlord, Benjamin Khahshour, to produce her financial records amid the ongoing investigation.

All are set to appear for examination in late July, the court records state, and must turn over the requested documents including bank statements, money orders, cashier's checks, and emails and texts pertaining to Jayne's finances.

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