Convicted double murderer and disgraced attorney Alex Murdaugh has admitted to committing additional financial crimes in a Monday response to a long-running lawsuit filed in federal court.
That lawsuit, filed in April 2022, has to do with claims that Murdaugh lied about certain details surrounding the death of his former housekeeper in 2018. Gloria Satterfield, 57, worked as the Murdaugh family housekeeper for over two decades. She allegedly died in what has been described as a “trip and fall accident” at the then-family hunting lodge, Moselle, on Feb. 26, 2018. After her passing, Murdaugh asserted legal responsibility and sued himself to obtain lucrative insurance proceeds for the dead woman’s family.
Except, that money never reached her heirs. Murdaugh admittedly pocked some $4.3 million from insurance settlements. A confession of judgment was filed by Murdaugh in June 2022 – admitting that he stole the settlement money from Gloria Satterfield’s sons, Tony Satterfield and Brian Harriott.
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In the present lawsuit, Nautilus Insurance Company requested a declaration of its rights in response to news that Murdaugh had been less than truthful about the circumstances of his housekeeper’s death to obtain a quick and favorable settlement.
“Beginning in July 2021 and continuing through the filing of this action, Nautilus became aware for the first time of facts regarding the Satterfield claims, allegations of insurance fraud, conspiracy to commit insurance fraud, and allegations of criminal conduct,” the lawsuit says.
In his eight-page response, Murdaugh admits that he was the one who, as the complaint terms things, “approached the Satterfield family after the death of Gloria Satterfield and suggested they sue him and collect from his insurance companies, including Nautilus.”
He also admits that, after the fall, he falsely claimed that, in terms of the complaint, “Ms. Satterfield briefly regained consciousness, during which time she stated that Murdaugh’s dogs had caused her to fall. This statement was heard by no one else and is contradicted by Ms. Satterfield’s later statement to hospital staff that she had no idea what made her fall.”
“No dogs were involved in the fall of Gloria Satterfield on February 2, 2018,” Murdaugh’s response says. “After Ms. Satterfield’s death, Defendant invented Ms. Satterfield’s purported statement that dogs caused her fall to force his insurers to make a settlement payment, and he stated that she was not on the property to perform work.”
While admitting his lies, Murdaugh’s response says he “denies the existence of any conspiracy to improperly cause Nautilus to pay a fraudulent claim.”
Others alleged to have been involved in the conspiracy include Cory Fleming, Chad Westendorf, Palmetto State Bank, and Moss & Kuhn, P.A.
Murdaugh has consistently said – including during testimony during his double murder trial – that he acted alone in the myriad theft of funds from various clients and entities over the years.
At least one federal judge, dealing with an appeal by one of Murdaugh’s convicted co-conspirators, did not attach much heft to claims from the convicted double murderer that he was a lone wolf financial criminal.
Russell Laffitte, the former CEO of Palmetto State Bank, had hoped those under-oath statements would accrue to his benefit. A jury convicted him on six separate financial crimes in November 2022.
More Law&Crime coverage: Convicted Alex Murdaugh co-conspirator tries to use murderer’s statements during trial to reverse conviction
“Murdaugh is manifestly not a credible witness. Evidence offered during the Defendant’s trial established without question that Murdaugh is a serial liar and fraudster who stole from his clients and law partners,” U.S. District Judge Richard Mark Gergel wrote in an order last month denying the request for a new trial. “He now stands convicted of the double homicide of his wife and son. It is difficult to imagine a less credible witness under these circumstances.”
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Alex Murdaugh admits he lied about Gloria Satterfield’s fall
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