Orange County Superior Court Judge David McEachen has issued a broad Temporary Restraining Order against accused murderer Stanley Elkus in a lawsuit brought by the wife and children of Dr. Ron Gilbert. The Court Order prohibits Defendant Elkus from transferring real property that he owns in Orange County.
In a shocking crime that made worldwide headlines, Dr. Gilbert, 52, was murdered in his Newport Beach medical office on January 28, 2013. According to court records, defendant Elkus was found in the examination room holding a gun next to Dr. Gilbert’s body moments after the shooting. Elkus was immediately arrested by Newport Beach police for Dr. Gilbert’s murder.
Dr. Gilbert’s wife of 23 years, Elizabeth Gilbert, and his two children, have filed two lawsuits against Defendant Stanley Elkus in the last week. The Gilbert family filed a wrongful death action on March 28, 2013 (Orange County Superior Court Case No. 30-2013-00640069) and a fraudulent conveyance action on April 2, 2013 (Orange County Superior Court Case No. 30-2013-00640481).
As set forth in the Ex Parte Application for Temporary Restraining Order, on February 8, 2013, 11 days after the murder of Dr. Gilbert, Defendant Elkus transferred seven of the eight properties that he owned in Orange and Riverside Counties to apparent relatives. The Ex Parte Application contends that this was an obvious attempt to defraud the Gilbert family and shield himself from civil liability for the murder.
The Temporary Restraining Order prevents Elkus from transferring or selling the remaining Orange County property that he owns. In addition, the Gilbert family recorded lis pendens on all eight properties on April 2, which will prevent further fraudulent transfer or sale of the properties. The Court has set a further preliminary injunction hearing for April 19, 2013, at which time the judge will consider whether the Temporary Restraining Order shall be converted to a permanent order.
Dr. Gilbert’s wife and children have retained Edward Susolik of Callahan & Blaine as their counsel. Callahan & Blaine is the law firm that obtained a $934 Million jury verdict (Beckman Coulter Inc. v. Flextronics Int’l Ltd., Orange County Super. Ct. No. 01CC08395), the largest in Orange County history, as well as a $50 Million settlement that has been certified as the largest personal injury settlement in United States history (Neria v. City of Dana Point, Orange County, CA Superior Court, Case No. 06CC10395).
“This is one of the most tragic cases I have handled in my 23 years of practice,” said Susolik. “Dr. Gilbert was a highly respected doctor, a wonderful husband and father, and a generous and kind man who was loved by all. He was murdered in cold blood in the very place where he had devoted his entire life to healing people, his medical office.”
Susolik noted that, “We have discovered that 11 days after Defendant Elkus murdered Dr. Gilbert, Elkus has attempted to further harm the Gilbert family by fraudulently transferring a number of properties that he owns in Orange and Riverside Counties to co-conspirators. Pursuant to the two lawsuits we have filed and the Court Order issued today, however, we have now successfully frozen the real property assets of the defendant. Our next step will be to aggressively go after the defendant and all of his co-conspirators and return all of the fraudulently transferred assets to Mrs. Gilbert and her family as damages for the wrongful death.”
Susolik added, “We are aggressively going after Defendant Elkus and assets and properties. We obviously believe he will be found liable for the wrongful death of Dr. Gilbert. We further believe that he has engaged in a fraudulent conveyance of his properties in sham transactions with his co-conspirators. Defendant Elkus has committed a massive fraud upon the Gilbert family only 11 days after he murdered Dr. Gilbert. This fraudulent action was clearly done with the intention of further harming the Gilbert family, who have already suffered the loss of their loving husband and father.”
Susolik further stated, “We will prevail both in the wrongful death action and fraudulent conveyance action, and we will recover every penny of properties and assets that the defendant has fraudulently transferred since the day of the murder. We will leave no stone unturned and take every action possible in order to ensure that Mrs. Gilbert and her two children obtain every penny of possible compensation from the defendant. We were shocked and horrified when we found out that the defendant Elkus fraudulently transferred a number of his real estate properties literally days after the brutal murder of Dr. Gilbert, and we will take all steps to undo this fraud.”