Frail Tom Girardi, 83, appears in court as judge orders mental competency hearing
Recently indicted Tom Girardi was present for an initial appearance in Los Angeles federal court on Monday, where he was ordered to undergo a mental competency evaluation, Page Six can exclusively report.
Initial appearances usually entail a bond hearing and the defendant’s arraignment; however, during the 15-minute gathering, United States Magistrate Judge Karen L. Stevenson entered a not-guilty plea on behalf of the frail-looking disbarred attorney, who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia in March 2021.
She also sealed all records pertaining to his mental health.
Furthermore, Judge Stevenson set the 83-year-old’s bond at $250,000 with the understanding that his brother-turned-conservator, Robert Girardi, will have custody over him.
She said Tom — who resides at a senior living facility in Orange County, Calif. — does not have to wear an electronic monitor, but she forbade him from leaving the Central District of California and ordered him to turn over his passports and other travel documents.
Additionally, he may not have contact with any of the alleged victims or witnesses associated with the case.
Robert, who was present in court, confirmed he understood the order and said he would sign the bond agreement.
Meanwhile, Tom — who was wearing a plum sweater atop a white button-down shirt with black slacks, black dress shoes and a black face mask — remained silent as he scratched his head and leaned back in his chair a few times.
Judge Stevenson also said she reviewed the alleged scammer’s financial affidavit and found that he qualified to be represented by a public defender; his lawyers are Deputy Federal Public Defenders Craig Harbaugh and Georgina Wakefield.
Additionally, Judge Stevenson granted Federal Prosecutor Scott Paetty’s request to have the court be notified if any assets worth $5,000 or more are transferred from Tom’s estate.
She then ordered both parties to meet and confer when they would be able to appear in front of a different judge, which will be US District Judge Josephine L. Stanton.
A grand jury indicted the estranged husband of “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” star Erika Jayne last week on five counts of wire fraud charges for allegedly embezzling more than $15 million from his clients.
According to the Department of Justice, Tom and Christopher Kazuo Kamon — the former CFO of now-defunct law firm Girardi & Keese, who is in currently federal custody — allegedly orchestrated “elaborate” lies in order to misappropriate their clients’ settlement funds.
The DOJ accused the pair of using their clients’ winnings to fund payroll, personal expenses and other clients’ settlement funds that had previously been misappropriated.
The indictment came almost three months after it was revealed that Tom had gotten away with “serious failures” throughout his lengthy legal career, as the State Bar of California received hundreds of complaints against him and failed to take appropriate action.
The IRS Criminal Investigation agency and the FBI are probing the case against the alleged fraudster — which could see him facing up to 20 years in prison — with the assistance of the Office of the US Trustee.
Meanwhile, Jayne — who has been adamant that she had no involvement in or even knowledge of her spouse of 21 years’ alleged crimes — recently teased that she has “something to say” about the indictment, but she won’t be talking “right now.”
However, when paparazzi asked the Bravolebrity, 51, point-blank whether she was worried about her “situation,” she replied, “No.”