A bombshell investigation has uncovered a shady connection between Erika Jayne’s estranged husband, Tom Girardi’s son-in-law, and a California State Bar prosecutor. The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star’s ex’s son-in-law, David Lira, was covertly working in private practice with L.A.-based prosecutor, Dale Nowicki, for over a year, according to a report by Law360.
The State Bar of California put Nowicki on “administrative leave” as a result of the investigation. The prosecutor reportedly did not follow a requirement to disclose that he was working on the side with Lira to the State Bar. Lira worked with Tom at his firm, Girardi Keese, for years amid a growing legal firestorm. Lira is a named defendant in an ongoing federal lawsuit against Tom and the Bravo star.
Tom has been accused of embezzling settlement funds owed to various clients, including family members of victims of a 2018 plane crash. Lawyers have accused the couple of staging a divorce because they were “on the verge of financial collapse and locked in a downward spiral of mounting debts and dwindling funds.”
Tom was placed under conservatorship after he was diagnosed with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Erika has maintained that she had no knowledge of Tom’s misdeeds.
Nowicki’s supervisor was reportedly “overseeing the bar’s prosecution of Girardi for allegedly stealing from clients’ settlements.”
As reported in June—The State Bar of California fessed up to botching investigations tied to complaints against Tom Girardi for years. The regulatory agency admitted in June that its investigators mishandled years of complaints levied against the disgraced attorney.
The shocking admission followed a March Times investigation that detailed how Tom managed to keep his law license flawless despite being hit, both personally and through his firm, by more than 100 lawsuits. Many of the suits alleged misappropriation of funds, and the article described how Tom built close relationships with bar employees by treating them to Las Vegas casino parties, private plane transportation, and boozy lunches at Morton’s.
The agency’s Board of Trustees revealed via a press release that an internal audit on the disgraced lawyer’s file at the bar “revealed mistakes made in some investigations over the many decades of Mr. Girardi’s career going back some 40 years and spanning the tenure of many Chief Trial Counsels.”
The audit was conducted by an independent consultant who “identified significant issues” in the “investigation and evaluation of high-dollar, high volume trust accounts,” according to the news release.
Tom was disbarred in August.
The Law360 report confirms that Nowicki stepped down on October 4th, after he was asked to comment on the outlet’s exposé. The agency stated that they were not aware of Nowicki’s professional relationship with Lira. They refuted the idea that the prosecutor was involved in the Girardi investigation.
The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills reunion wraps on Wednesday, at 8 pm, ET, on Bravo.