Lawsuit: Lawyer Embezzled Money From 737 MAX Crash Victims

Filed Under: Other Airlines

It’s not often that my love for aviation and my (former?) interest in reality TV intersect, but this is one of those rare situations, even if the circumstances are terrible.

Lawyer allegedly embezzled money from Boeing settlement

Tom Girardi of law firm Girardi Keese, and his wife, Erika Girardi of “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills,” are accused of misappropriating settlement funds intended for victims of Lion Air 610. This was the October 2018 Boeing 737 MAX flight that crashed, killing 189 people.

According to the suit, instead of paying clients the settlement money that the firm received from Boeing in the spring of 2020, Girardi instead embezzled the proceeds to avoid a “downward spiral of mounting debts and dwindling funds.” The suit alleges that this money is being used to fund their “outrageous lifestyles.”

The lawsuit has been filed by the firm Edelson, which acted as local counsel in the case. In recent months Edelson became aware that full payments hadn’t been made to crash victims, even though Boeing had transferred all settlement funds to Girardi.

Girardi allegedly instead entered agreements to redirect the money to the law firm’s creditors, from which Girardi borrowed millions of dollars. It’s also claimed that these creditors “knowingly demanded and received embezzled funds belonging to the Lion Air clients.”

All of this comes shortly after it was announced that 49-year-old Erika Girardi and 81-year-old Tom Girardi are getting divorced, after being married for 21 years. Edelson also claims that the divorce is a “sham attempt” to protect the couple’s money from creditors.

This is also why I’m largely over reality TV

It’s not often that there’s a context in which I can write about reality TV, but this is an exception.

The truth is that I’m basically over the “Real Housewives” franchises. Back in the day I thought they used to be entertaining, because it actually seemed like we were getting a glimpse at peoples’ lives.

Unfortunately at this point most of the franchises have become so beyond fake that I just can’t watch anymore. The number of people in these shows that file for bankruptcy or are jailed, all to keep up appearances, is just unbelievable. If I wanted a show about people getting locked up, I’d watch “Love After Lockup” (and I do watch that, for the record).

Just take “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills,” for example. You have Erika Girardi’s money-losing music “career” (perhaps indirectly being funded off the backs of 737 MAX crash victims), you have Dorit’s fake-as-could-be accent, and that doesn’t even address her husband, who seems to be in a worse financial situation than Norwegian Air, despite their ridiculous lifestyle.

Speaking of Erika, I love how on the show she talks about how she has two private jets she flies everywhere. Funny, because I sat across from her on an American Airlines flight a few years back (along with her “glam squad” that she takes everywhere)… I guess both of her jets were in for maintenance that day?

Now, to be clear, I’m not totally over reality TV. I still enjoy wholesome shows like “Love After Lockup,” “90 Day Fiance,” and “Family Chantel” (which I’m sad to admit, because I feel like I get more stupider every time I watch that show). Mainly I just watch crime shows, to the point that I basically consider myself qualified to be a criminal investigator (similar to how WebMD turns us all into doctors).

Bottom line

A new lawsuit alleges that a lawyer representing 737 MAX crash victims embezzled the funds intended for families of crash victims. Not only that, but the lawyer being sued is Tom Girardi, and his wife Erika Girardi, from “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.” This conveniently comes around the same time he and his wife are getting a divorce.

  1. The “Real Housewives of …” says it all. It seems as though half the people on that show are crooks and sleazeballs. Who else would embarrass their family to be on network tv?

  2. “Funny, because I sat across from her on an American Airlines flight a few years back” – BURN! Love it. Just in case if anyone was wondering if you were gay. Ha ha

  3. “This is also why I’m largely over reality TV”

    Seems like you feel the need to explain so many of your posts in a “I know this is off topic/irrelevant/something I don’t agree with, but…”

    Post or don’t post, there is no need to explain – Yoda, paraphrased.

  4. @ Ben — Certain BoardingArea bloggers, maybe named Cariverga, also seem to have issues, but I still read BoardingArea…just saying.

  5. These guys will get sued again by Mr. Hotman Paris, Indonesian celebrity lawyer… Lol
    It will be a freak show!

  6. Not that I read People …. but isn’t Erika the wife who announced last week she is a lesbian and yesterday introduced her new girl friend in a Tweet?

  7. Unfortunately, I’m apparently less mature than you and still watch the Housewives. It’s stupid and fake, but reality in 2020 sucks. I’d rather watch fake reality and at least laugh at how ridiculous it is. Anyway, I always wondered how they supported their lifestyle. Guess now we know it’s debt and fraud. She’ll have a come back just like Teresa from New Jersey though. The super fans of these shows support these women blindly, just like Trump supporters who blindly follow him. Same personality traits, opposite demographic appeal.

  8. NOTE TO ABOVE POST: I was wrong. I may read People but my mind is elsewhere. It was a different Housewife.

  9. There was a similar lawsuit before and another one in September. He’s been doing this trick for a long time it seems. Getting the load of cash and paying back the victims slowly or delayed while gambling/spending/investing and losing the money ?
    And Erika… Oh we knew she had some skeletons in that humongy closet of hers

  10. Ah I had the same realization with the RH franchises and am unfortunately starting to with the 90 Day franchises as well – they seem to just be getting faker and faker. But put Angela and Michael on the screen, and I’ll grab the popcorn 🙂 I do still enjoy the Dallas RH though – at least their southern accents somewhat cover (or entertainingly enhance?) the fake story lines!

  11. Totally agree that Andy Cohen and his reality empire is starting to fall. None of the “real” people are real (and Salt Lake City. . . PLEASE). I do love Below Deck still (but sailing yacht was a yawner). The rest I have lost interest and could careless (Vicki and Tamera got out in time).

    I think that we have been stuck at home so much watching this garbage has woken many up to just how fake it is and reading a book, listening to music or facetiming with friends is more real. Oh the hours of my life I wish I could get back, . . LOL

  12. It true , it’s beyond disgusting. People stealing from others who may have had nothing .

    As for “ real housewives..”. What a load of garbage. Money doesn’t bring class. Groups of women taking about mindless drivel.

  13. Real reality is coming this December 2020. It may be bumpy.

    Nice big homes in Beverly Hills, not all nice people living in them, nor of any honour.

  14. You’re “over reality tv”? It took you a very , very long time to come to that view. It’s utterly moronic , and the success of it is both stupefying and deeply concerning…

  15. I enjoy OMAAT but my goodness when Lucky delves into popular culture he doesn’t just have the taste of a suburban American white teenage girl, but an amazingly basic one! I did get a chuckle over his outrage that “reality tv” is, in fact fake. Bless his heart. 🙂

  16. They all should be in TV program “American Greed” both Boeing (for not preventing this accident happen, they knew what went wrong in Max) and the lawyer for taking people’s money. It’s disgusting how people could take money from family that lost their kids, mother, father..

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