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Girardi Deemed Competent for Embezzlement Trial Faces Serious Charges

A federal judge in Los Angeles decided that Tom Girardi, a lawyer facing embezzlement charges, is able to understand the trial process, despite his Alzheimer’s disease.

The judge’s decision was shared on Tuesday by U.S. District Judge Josephine Staton. It was noted that Girardi is competent to stand trial.

Both sides’ lawyers will have five days to agree on whether any private information, like health records, should stay confidential.

This ruling comes after a three-day hearing that started on August 3.

Girardi, who is 84 years old, became famous for his work on legal cases, including the one shown in the movie “Erin Brockovich.” He is also known for appearing on the TV show “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” with his wife Erika Jayne. Now, he is accused of stealing $15 million from his clients between 2010 and 2020.

Girardi was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia in March 2021.

Girardi Deemed Competent for Embezzlement Trial Faces Serious Charges

Tom Girardi, a lawyer facing embezzlement charges, can understand the trial process

This decision is seen as a win for the prosecutors and Girardi’s former clients who were worried that his Alzheimer’s diagnosis would prevent him from facing trial.

“He’s not above the law,” said one of Girardi’s former clients, Danny Barnes. “He’s done a lot of harm to people.”

Barnes believes he lost about $2 million from a settlement related to the Lockheed case in the 1990s.

“He’s damaged families,” Barnes added. “He stole our money and our heritage. He knows it, so he should be afraid.”

Joseph Ruigomez, another victim named in the case, was surprised by the ruling. Ruigomez was severely burned in the 2010 San Bruno pipeline explosion.

“If convicted, Girardi could spend up to 20 years in prison for wire fraud.

In December 2020, Girardi and Jayne were accused of stealing settlement money meant for victims of a Boeing plane crash.

Girardi is currently living in a senior living facility because he reportedly can’t take care of himself.

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