Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Oakhurst Sues Ridgway Lane,

A Clinton homeowners association accused Ridgway Lane of embezzling over $168,000 from its bank accounts.  Oakhurst Homeowners Association sued the HOA management company in Rankin County Circuit Court yesterday.    Oakhurst claimed family members of the owners of Ridgway Lane either received or endorsed suspicious checks drawn on Oakhurst funds.

Eight other  homeowners associations sued Ridgway and the Lanes (new moniker? Sounds like a group) recently, alleging they embezzled millions of dollars from accounts they managed for the HOA's.  The list of alleged victims include homeowners associations from such prestigious neighborhoods as Bridgewater, the Barrington, and The Palisades.  Secretary of State records state that Richard Ridgway and David L. Lane are the owners of the company. The company website stated David L. Lane and David W. Lane are the respective President and Vice President of the company. 

The Clinton HOA said Ridgway Lane managed its affairs since 2003.  The company maintained operating and reserve accounts at Community Bank for Oakhurst.  The Lanes were the only authorized signatories on the account.
The complaint states that Richard Ridgway was on the account as well for "a period of time."

Oakhurst became aware of possible embezzlement when "it received multiple reports of alleged financial mismanagement" of other HOA funds on November 8, 2019.  JJ broke the first story about alleged Ridgway Lane embezzlement on the afternoon of November 7 and followed up with the Dinsmor story late afternoon on November 8.  No other media covered the lawsuits for several days.  Oakhurst called David L. Lane to discuss the allegations.  Mr. Lane said the company was shutting down by the end of the year.   Ridgway Lane's President told Oakhurst several days later that the balance in Oakhurst's bank accounts would be much less than in the reports provided by Ridgway Lane.

Oakhurst claims the accounts are $168,000 less than what is stated in the most recent financial report.  The complaint charges:

Initial review of records previously not provided to Oakhurst show, in addition to the approximate $168,000 account balance discrepancy, that counter checks were issued for cash, that funds were transferred to other unknown accounts, that checks were written to individuals and businesses which did not transact business with or for Oakhurst, that suspicious checks were endorsed by family members of Ridgway Lane owners, and that Oakhurst funds were paid to family members of Ridgway Lane directly or through related businesses. Investigation is ongoing.
The lawsuit charges the defendants with breach of contract, negligence, fraud, conversion, unjust enrichment, and breach of fiduciary duty. The case is assigned to Judge John Emfinger.

List of affected HOA's that sued Ridgeway Lane. 
Bridgewater at Old Agency
The Barrington
The Diplomat

Discovered but not yet taken action.

JJ knows of at least three more Ridgway Lane-managed HOA's that have probably suffered

Earlier Ridgway Lane posts
Payroll company sues Ridgway lane 
Ridgeway Lane Update, TRO's Extended  (Lynch Mob Edition)
St. Ives Escapes 
Add Stonebridge to Ridgway Lane List 
King Kenny Rulz, Bridgewaters get freeze.  
Lawsuit: Lane Confessed 
Dinsmor losses over $200,000 
On deck: Bruenberg 
Up next: The Barrington.  
Bridgewater goes for freeze, Bridgewater at Old Agency says RL embezzled over $340,000 
Palisades plundered.  
Dinsmor HOA discoveres "irregularitites."  
Bridgewater accuses HOA manager of embezzlement.


Inquiring minds wanna know said...

Does anyone know why they were embezzling? They knew 💯 % they would be caught.

Anonymous said...

"JJ knows of at least three more Ridgway Lane-managed HOA's that have probably suffered"

Which other three?

Anonymous said...

Interested to see who the individuals and businesses were that checks were written to- other than to cash.

Interesting that the copies of these checks are not attached to the compliant

Anonymous said...

Is there any state or federal investigation into these guys? This is way beyond egregious.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

So many questions

Kingfish said...

Keep in mind many of the victims had no idea something was wrong until the beginning of this month and some of those didn't know until JJ broke the stories on November 7 and 8.

They have to go through all the bank statements, reconcile them, dig up reports, and figure out what the hell happened as well as the damage. Financial crimes take a while to unravel. Law enforcement is on this one but this isn't as simple as watching a video and going out to arrest the perp. It's a safe bet they will be prosecuted before the end of the year.

Hope the feds prosecute them. If the DA prosecutes them, they are eligible to get out after only serving 25% of their sentence as the crimes are considered to be "non violent." However, they will serve much more of their sentence if the feds get them.

Anonymous said...

When Hal Lusk moved into Oakhurst in the early 2000’s he self appointed himself as the mayor of the neighborhood. Somewhere along the way he got elected to the official position as president of the HOA. He is like so many of the HOA board presidents, he wants to look important but not do any actual work. How do you not have a copy of a Managment contract? Ever think about looking at the bank statements? The local equivalent of a Barney Fife. He along with the other board members need to resign and let a fresh set of eyes look at things.

Anonymous said...

We dodged a bullet. We were home hunting in 2017-18 and had homes in Bruenburg, Dinsmor, and Oakhurst on our short list.

Anonymous said...

An HOA in Florence also had their accounts pilfered by the young Mr Lane. It appears that the total loss is around $30k, and since an attorney will only cost more $$$$, they have no desire to sue. If their insurance policy pays off as expected, then they will recoup the lost money.

Would it help anyone at this point join the chorus of accusers? Would it increase the likeliehood of a conviction, or increase the amount of time they will have to serve in prison?

Anonymous said...

As far as Lusk in Oakhurst goes, he's a real slapdick. All bark and dumb

Anonymous said...

The lanes should not watch hbo s oz

Ridgway better keep shuffling assets

Anonymous said...

I think it’s safe to assume that any HOA where RL controlled the operating checking account is going to have missing funds. My HOA is DRAGGING their feet with information. I agree with above comment about legal costs to pursue. It’s likely not worth it for lesser amounts. The lost money train is soooo long now that those late to the party are too far back in line to recover funds. However, I do hope those not pursuing civilly will join the criminal complaint.

Anonymous said...

I bet you couldn’t drive a 10 penny nail in Richards butt.

Anonymous said...

Did the Lanes pay taxes on this income?

Anonymous said...

Where he Is headed- for that he will be thankful.

Anonymous said...

Oh, you better believe the IRS will be after them as-well.

Anonymous said...

Morty Seinfeld was relieved of his duties as president of the HOA at Del Boca Vista because his son bought him a Cadillac and Morty was accused of embezzlement. My, how times have changed!

Anonymous said...

Anyone seen Richard?

Anonymous said...

I am waiting with baited breath for Richard’s (the golden child) explanation. Kicked back with feet on the railing with a Tito’s in hand, smiling.

Anonymous said...

The US Attorney’s office and the FBI are now handling the Ridgeway Lane case. The Lane’s should be indicted by the end of the year. The U S Attorney will most likely petition a Federal Judge to appoint a receiver. That will stop all of the lawsuits against Ridgeway Lane. The receiver will then engage in the forensic accounting of the embezzled money. If there is any money left that the Lane’s have not spent, the receiver will pay the HOA’s back out of the remaining money. I doubt there will be enough money/assets to pay the HOA’s back. Most of the HOA’s have an insurance policy that will pay the HOA’s for the money stolen. The U S Attorney will also pursue the criminal offenses against the Lane’s and he may well go after other people (the John Does mentioned in the complaints) when he discovers them.

oh really? said...

Although I wish no financial harm on anyone, there is no better group of homeowners that deserve this crap than those that BELIEVE their own selling points about HOA’s. “We keep broken down cars out of the driveway and we use your money to make it so.”

One can only stand in awe of the fact that people pay an organization to nazify their lifestyle outside the home. I mean hell, do members of most HOA’s even HAVE property rights or do the just give them up with a nice little contract at closing?

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