Android co-founder Andy Rubin has been accused of cheating his wife out of millions through a prenuptial agreement obtained under false pretenses, according to documents unsealed in connection with a related case.
The documents — first unearthed by BuzzFeed’s Ryan Mac — allege that Rubin forced his wife Rie Hiraburu Rubin into the prenuptial agreement just weeks before she was scheduled to give birth to their child, negotiating specific terms until three days before the couple’s city hall wedding. The lawsuit seeks to annul that agreement, which resulted in Rie being cut out of much of the wealth Andy obtained from Google and his later Essential project.
As a complaint, the document is only an allegation and has not been confirmed by the court. Still, it echoes a number of details reported by the New York Times in October, including the allegation that Andy supported a string of mistresses, who would often be loaned to other men in what he described as “an ownership relationship.” The complaint alleges Andy had at least five such mistresses, including one (dubbed “M”) who was “complicit with Rubin in running what appeared to be a sex ring.”
The complaint also alleges that Andy diverted joint funds in order to make personal payouts to a number of women, payouts consistent with the Times’ reporting. According to the complaint, he stopped depositing his Google paychecks in the couple’s joint account in February 2014, shortly after he left the company amid allegations of sexual misconduct. But Andy continued to be paid by the company, subject to his severance agreement, and simply had the deposits diverted to an individual account, which made hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments to other women.
The central claim of the complaint is a breach of duty by Rie’s lawyer, which could invalidate the agreement if affirmed by the court. According to the complaint, her lawyer had represented Andy in a previous divorce, presenting a significant conflict of interest that Andy allegedly concealed from Rie. As a result, Andy was allegedly able to exclude significant portions of his wealth from the prenuptial agreement, including holdings that appear to result from Microsoft’s acquisition of Sidekick manufacturer Danger, where Rubin was a co-founder. According to the plaintiffs, that conflict of interest and the broader irregularities should render the agreement invalid.
Andy Rubin’s departure from Google has been a sore point for a number of employees at the company — particularly his $ 90 million severance agreement, negotiated in the wake of numerous harassment complaints. News of that agreement motivated the Google walkout in November, which saw more than 20,000 employees leave company offices around the world in symbolic protest. That activism has continued in the months that followed, most recently protesting YouTube’s approach to moderation of anti-LGBTQ slurs.
Reached for comment, lawyers for Andy Rubin described the allegations as an everyday divorce proceeding. “This is a garden variety family law dispute involving a wife who regrets her decision to execute a prenuptial agreement,” a representative said. “It should be litigated in family law court in its entirety.‘’
After publication, Andy Rubin’s lawyer sent along an amended statement, specifically arguing that the legal complaint is “full of false claims”: “This is a family law dispute involving a wife who regrets her decision to execute a prenuptial agreement. It is full of false claims and we look forward to telling our side of the story.”
Update July 2nd, 6:18PM ET: Updated with comment from Andy Rubin’s legal representative.
Update, July 2nd, 7:27PM ET: Updated with second comment from Andy Rubin’s legal representative.