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January 10, 2023, US Bankruptcy Court for Central California – Elissa D. Miller, the chapter 7 trustee (“Trustee”) for the estate of Girardi Keese (“Debtor”), sues Comerica Bank (“Defendant”) to claw back more than $10 million as alleged fraudulent transfers made by the Debtor to Defendant during the seven-year period before Girardi Keese’s bankruptcy filing.
The Trustee alleges that Girardi Keese, a law firm founded by Thomas V. Girardi, was allegedly an “illicit” and “felonious” business that allegedly stole millions of dollars of client funds. The Trustee further alleges that the Debtor began to “drain” its estate to pay certain preferred creditors and third parties at a time when the firm was in a precarious financial state and allegedly unable to pay its creditors.
The Trustee claims that the Debtor made approximately 130 payments to Comerica Bank in the total aggregate amount of $10,268,976 during the seven-year period prior to the filing of the bankruptcy petition. The Trustee acknowledges that though Comerica Bank and Girardi Keese maintained a banking relationship, the alleged transfers could not allegedly be reconciled to any loans, debt instruments, or obligations on the books or general ledgers of Girardi Keese. The Trustee claims that the payments had no relation to the operation of, and did not benefit, Girardi Keese.
The Trustee seeks to claw back the alleged fraudulent transfers under sections 544, 548, and 550 of the Bankruptcy Code.
Miller v. Comerica Bank (In re Girardi Keese), AP No. 23-01049, US Bankruptcy Court for Central California.
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