Barbara Hartwell

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Independent Investigator, Intelligence Analyst, Journalist. Former CIA (NOC, Psychological Operations) Black Ops Survivor. Sovereign Child of God. Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ (Ordained 1979, D.Div.) Exposing Government Lies, Crimes, Corruption, Conspiracies and Cover-ups.

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Criminal Conspiracy of Extortion & Racketeering in South Carolina: A Nightmare for Homeowners










Larry & Gayle Richardson at South Carolina Home





I should mention that I first got acquainted with Larry Richardson in connection with this case. In 2019, Larry published a video describing the egregious injustices perpetrated against him by a criminal conspiracy, involving several real estate management companies, violating multiple South Carolina laws. He and his wife were about to lose their home unless they paid thousands of dollars, which they did not have, and more to the point, they did not owe.

The video included an appeal for donations to prevent the house from being confiscated and sold, leaving Larry and Gayle homeless.

Seeing the video, I was outraged. At that time I did not know Larry personally, but I was familiar with some of his work, serving in Christian ministry and in activism and education, defending Liberty as an American patriot.

I wanted to support him, knowing that his situation was dire, but at the time I saw the video I had a total of $5.00 to my name. I sent him a card with the 5 dollar bill. I also posted a notice on Larry's case, along with his video on my website, an appeal for support.

Since that time, I have been richly blessed to have Larry as a friend and colleague, and most of all, a true brother in Christ.

Over the past three years, I learned more about the case (ongoing, as justice has not been served) and recently I asked Larry to send me the documentation. I received a large folder, including all the documents he had collected, as well as videos.

I have reviewed all the documents, researched the South Carolina laws, and I have interviewed Larry at length in telephone conversations for this report. Mainly, this report is based on the documented evidence I have seen, which corroborates Larry's testimony.

I am not an attorney, and I should make the disclaimer that any possible errors are mine. This report is not to be interpreted as a legal document, nor does it constitute legal advice, nor does it presume to speak for anyone but myself, as an advocacy journalist.

This report tells a true story, in simple terms. My purpose is also simple: I want to see these criminals held accountable for their grievous, injurious actions against innocent people, and to see justice served.

Barbara Hartwell

August 24, 2022

Larry and Gayle Richardson are senior citizens, both retired from the work force, and are Military Veterans, Larry having served in the US Army and Gayle in the US Air Force.

In September, 2009, Larry Richardson and his wife, Gayle, purchased a home in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

In searching for a property to suit their needs, they had very specific requirements: a place which would be solely owned by them, with no mortgage and no conditions attached by outside entities, such as a Home Owners Association (HOA), which might interfere in any way with their independence and quiet enjoyment of their home.

They paid for the property in full, with cash. There was no mortgage. In the paperwork they signed, no mention was made of any HOA, nor did either of them ever sign any contractual agreements related to such.

Keep this key point in mind as you read on: It is an indisputable, irrefutable fact that Larry and Gayle Richardson never, at any time, joined any HOA, nor signed any such related paperwork. They were not members and never had been.

Under South Carolina law, there are at least two specific provisions which protect the rights of the homeowner, which relate to the facts of this case: 1. No party may be admitted as a member of any HOA without having consented to such an agreement, by signing a document pertaining to such. 2. No such contract may be administered ex post facto (after the fact).

However, in May, 2013, some very serious troubles began. Letters arrived, from a real estate management company, claiming that the Richardsons owed HOA fees, from the day they moved to the house, despite the fact that they were not members of any HOA.

Larry responded by making it clear that there was no mention whatsoever of any HOA in any paperwork associated with the purchase of their house, but that if they could provide any document with his signature, he would look it over. Of course, he knew there was no such document. And they never got back to him.

For about a year, he heard nothing more. He reasonably concluded, based on his research of South Carolina law, that those sending the dunning letters realized they were mistaken and had thus corrected their error.

But as Larry learned, that was not at all the case.

A year later, a different real estate management company sent a letter, again claiming he owed HOA fees from the day he and his wife moved in.

He sent them a copy of his first letter to the first real estate management company, again requesting that they provide evidence of his signature on any document. They failed to respond.

Not until some time later, when they began sending harassing letters, now threatening that they would foreclose on his mortgage if he did not pay the past due fees for the HOA. As stated earlier, he had no mortgage, so he ignored the letters.

At least one more real estate management company sent harassing, threatening letters with the same false claims. Larry responded the same as he had done before: He did not have a mortgage. He and Gayle were not members of any HOA and had never signed any such documents.

In 2017, letters of harassment and threat increased from yet another real estate management company.

[NOTE: For the purpose of this report, no names of companies nor associated individuals are given.]

Finally, in May, 2019, a letter was delivered by a process server, demanding that he respond to the Clerk of Court and a lawyer the HOA had put on the case.

Larry responded and provided the same statement as before. The simple truth, that is. The indisputable, irrefutable fact of the matter: Larry and Gayle Richardson were not members of any HOA. Thus, they owed no fees pertaining to such.

Shortly thereafter, he received a letter that the case would be going before a 'special referee' with a date set in August, 2019.

Larry showed up at the hearing with his wife, Gayle and a neighbor as a potential witness. Twenty minutes before the meeting was set to begin, a woman went in to the room with the special referee. At the scheduled time, she came out and said Larry et al could go in. As Larry learned, she was a lawyer for the HOA. This, he knew, was “improper ex parte communication” with the special referee (in this case, acting in lieu of 'judge').

[NOTE: The Latin term ex parte is used in law to refer to court proceedings for the benefit of one party to a controversy, without the other being present. This is an exception to basic court procedure, which requires that both parties be present at any argument or proceeding, and that neither party may have contact with a judge (special referee) without previously notifying the other party.]

Less than three (3) minutes into the hearing, the special referee leaned over the table and directed a hostile stare at Larry. Larry stared back, but said nothing. The special referee then suddenly jumped up and shouted, Call the police! Then he opened the door and yelled out to the receptionist, Call the police!

The special referee then proclaimed that the meeting was over. Larry and his wife never even had a chance to present evidence on their case. They were treated with extreme disrespect, hostility, and worse, as if they were criminals.

So now, malicious slander had been added to the long term threats and harassment, ongoing for more than six years, from May, 2013 to August, 2019.

Was this supposed to be a fair hearing? Not by any stretch of the imagination. It is crystal clear that the fix was in, and had been, long before the case was “heard”.

Larry, Gayle and their neighbor gathered their documents (which they were never allowed to present) and left the room.

As he walked out to his car, Larry heard the special referee call out, Your house will be sold on the 7th of October!

Predictably, the special referee made a ruling that the money the HOA was demanding, plus all the legal fees for the HOA, must be paid by Larry and Gayle Richardson, and he proceeded to file an action with the County Sheriff's Office to have the property seized and sold.

Larry received a written notice of such 10 days later.

Larry researched previous cases and found that HOAs were given unbridled authority (despite the unlawful nature of their actions) to go after people, and that the Sheriff 's Department received 95% of the money obtained by foreclosure sales, which they used to pad their budget.

This clearly shows that vested interests are being served, at the expense of those individuals who should have a reasonable expectation that the Sheriff, who is elected by those in his county, should be protecting their rights, under the law, as he took an oath to do, under State and US Constitutions.

The Sheriff proceeded to place the Richardsons' property on the docket to be sold, despite all the illegal activities perpetrated by multiple actors and corporations from the beginning of the case in May, 2013, until the hearing (or rather, the non-hearing), in August, 2019.

In September 2019, Larry Richardson, after raising the money to pay the sum demanded to stop the seizure and sale of his home, hand delivered a check to the HOA's attorney.

Larry then mailed a notice to the South Carolina Court of Appeals, stating that he wished to appeal the decision.

He requested a transcript of the hearing, and learned that there was no transcript. He also was told that no records existed of the previous letters sent to him (harassing and threatening). No documents were provided which stated that he and Gayle were required to be members of any HOA.

Larry stated that there was no document bearing his signature, which indicated that he was liable for HOA fees. Nor stipulating that he would honor any provisions stated. He is not, nor has ever been a member.

He does not recognize the 'special referee', nor the HOA.

And the magnitude of this unlawful scheme of racketeering, extortion, harassment and threats gets worse. Larry and Gayle discovered that they were not the only ones to be targeted for years of this nightmare visited upon them, through no fault of their own. Many were senior citizens, like the Richardsons, living on limited fixed incomes.

Approximately 50 other homeowners (neighbors) were subjected to the same blitzkrieg tactics. As Larry reported, most of them caved, under pressure of the intimidation tactics, rather than pursue the justice to which they were entitled under the law.

As I see it, this is nothing less than a classic protection racket, such as is run by mobsters. Pay money you do not owe, to a Home Owners Association to which you do not belong. As long as you keep paying, getting nothing in return, they will leave you alone – well, not exactly. They will ride herd over you, to be sure you commit no ”violations”, such as, perhaps, having a fence of the “wrong” height, or in the “wrong” place, on your own property.

Yes, Larry and Gayle received these “violation notices” as well, all the time they were being threatened and harassed, forced to spend their precious time (and considerable sums of money) defending themselves against the siege.

Imagine the extreme stress, the pain and suffering, the anxiety, a direct result of being in the cross-hairs of such a mob of hoodlums.

To enumerate a list of criminal offenses: Racketeering. Extortion. Harassment. Threats and menacing. Intent to defraud. Slander. False claims of calling the police against innocent persons. Intentional infliction of emotional distress. Intent of theft of real property, using deception and false pretenses. All of which amounts to nothing less than state sanctioned robbery!

All this, with the blessing of the Sheriff, aiding and abetting the crimes to fill the coffers of his Office, while breaking his oath to serve the people who elected him.

Again, the key point, which bears repeating.

There is absolutely no doubt about these ironclad facts:

Larry and Gayle Richardson have never been members of any HOA.

At no time did they owe any fees to any HOA, nor to any other person(s) or entities.

The extortioners who have harassed and threatened them, for nearly a decade (since 2013) have exactly zero (0.00) evidence to challenge these facts, nor any evidence whatsoever which could possibly support their claims against the Richardsons.

All pertinent and applicable laws support the truth and the facts presented by the Richardsons, in voluminous and detailed documentation.

No laws whatsoever support the claims of any real estate management company, the HOA, their lawyers, or the 'special referee' placed on this case.

In glaringly obvious point of fact: They have no actionable case.

What these characters have done (and they are still at it, to this day) is absolutely unconscionable, reprehensible, opprobrious, disgraceful, and downright wicked.

They must be held accountable, by any and all ethical and lawful means.

Even after all this, this insufferable ordeal, Larry and Gayle Richardson have not given up in their pursuit of justice.

Larry explained that he has continued to report the facts of the case, furnishing voluminous documentation, to a number of authorities, including the US Attorney's Office.


He reported the case to the FBI Field Office in South Carolina, where he appeared in person. He spoke to two FBI agents, who it seemed understood that he had an actionable case, based on the documents. However, they explained that the amount of monies involved were insufficient for the FBI to get involved.

So, what is left, that Larry can possibly do, in his dedicated pursuit of justice?

His plan is to submit the case to the Horry County District Attorney for criminal investigation, for charges of extortion and criminal conspiracy.

As well, he plans to file a civil lawsuit against any involved parties, for the extensive damages he and his wife have suffered, including the time and money they lost standing up for their rights, the monies which were stolen from them for HOA fees they did not owe, as well as the severe emotional distress which resulted from the nightmarish ordeal.

As far as I can see, Larry and Gayle Richardson can never be made whole, not after the massive damages these criminal enterprises have inflicted. But there is still a chance that they can be vindicated in a court of law. This would at least set a precedent which might protect other homeowners from a similar nightmare.

If the parties engaging in criminality were charged and convicted, it would send a message to those like-minded racketeers, that indeed, crime does not pay. It might have a chilling effect on the schemes which are running rampant, to defraud and extort innocent people who seemingly have nowhere to turn for help, nor any legal remedy against these predators.

Please distribute this report far and wide and let it be known that you support seeing justice served for Larry and Gayle Richardson.

Barbara Hartwell

August 24, 2022


Massive Corruption in South Carolina

Video of Larry Richardson

Unity in Christ Ministries