After Thomas Vincent Girardi was indicted for allegedly embezzling more than $15 million from legal clients, the ex “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” husband pleaded not guilty on Monday.
Girardi’s court appearance comes on the heels of Los Angeles and Chicago prosecutors accusing him last week of stealing more than $18 million.
The 83-year-old ex-lawyer allegedly stole from clients that included an Arizona widow whose husband was killed in a boat accident, a Los Angeles couple injured in a car wreck that paralyzed their son and a man who was severely burned in the 2010 San Bruno gas pipeline explosion.
Also charged in the indictment is Christopher Kamon, 49, the chief financial officer of Girardi’s law firm. Although he did not appear in court on Monday, he is jailed on a separate wire fraud case in which he’s accused of embezzling law firm funds to renovate two LA-area homes, pay for shopping sprees and hire an escort.
During Girardi’s rise of being one of the nation’s most prominent plaintiff’s attorneys, he took on powerful corporations, movie studios and Pacific Gas and Electric in a case that led to a $333 million settlement, which was portrayed in the 2000 Julia Roberts film “Erin Brockovich.”
Despite being a successful lawyer at the time, his law empire started to spiral amid ongoing legal issues.
Last year, Girard lost his law license due to client thefts. Creditors of his bankrupt Girardi Keese firm are seeking more than $500 million, and he’s in divorce proceedings with Erika Jayne, who starred on “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.”
Girardi also faces federal wire fraud charges in Chicago, where he is accused of stealing about $3 million from family members of victims in a 2018 Lion Air crash that killed 189 people.
He was disbarred from the State Bar of California in July 2022 and currently resides in an assisted living facility memory care unit, having been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in March of 2021. He is also under a court conservatorship supervised by his brother, Robert.
While Kamon is due in a Chicago court Tuesday, Girardi’s arraignment there is scheduled for March 3.
Girardi’s son-in-law David Lira, 62, also faces charges in the Chicago case and is scheduled for arraignment Friday. His lawyer said he will plead not guilty.
Fox News Digital’s Tracy Wright and the Associated Press contributed to this report.