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Alex Murdaugh is jailed AGAIN on $4m fraud charges over allegations he defrauded sons of housekeeper

Disgraced South Carolina lawyer Alex Murdaugh is back in jail after being extradited from his Florida rehab facility to South Carolina on $4m fraud charges. 

Murdaugh, 53, was arrested on two felony counts of obtaining property by false pretenses on Thursday after being released from a drug rehabilitation center in Orlando, Florida.

He was booked Saturday into the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center in his home state on Saturday, and remained there as of early Monday morning, prison records show. 

Murdaugh is accused of collecting $4 million on a life insurance policy for his former maid, Gloria Satterfield, 57, that should have gone to her sons after she died in a mysterious ‘slip and fall’ accident at his home in 2018.

The kids were awarded $4 million after a wrongful death lawsuit but they say Alex stole $3 million and the remaining $1 million went to legal fees.

He had allegedly promised her family they would be financially taken care of before he conspired with a fellow attorney ‘to deprive the Satterfield family of insurance settlements owed to them by converting [the money] to Murdaugh’s own use,’ according to an arrest warrant obtained by the New York Post.

The fall was never reported to the local coroner’s office, according to the Post, and officials Satterfield’s death was ‘inconsistent with injuries sustained in a trip and fall accident.’

Murdaugh has since admitted he stole millions from the housekeeper’s sons and his law firm, blaming a decades-long opioid addiction for his ‘stupid, illegal’ behavior.

He denies, however, any involvement in the murders of his sons and wife, who were found shot dead in June at the family’s South Carolina home. 

Gloria Satterfield, 57, had been the Murdaugh housekeeper for about 25 years when she died following a mystery 'trip and fall' inside the Murdaugh family home in 2018

Alex Murdaugh, 53, was arrested on Thursday for stealing $4 million from a settlement awarded to the sons of his housekeeper, Gloria Satterfield, right, who died in a mysterious fall at his home in 2018

Murdaugh was booked into the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center in his home state of South Carolina on Saturday, and remained there as of early Monday morning

Murdaugh was booked into the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center in his home state of South Carolina on Saturday, and remained there as of early Monday morning

The check for $2.96 million above was paid to Murdaugh's shell company called Forge the same day a settlement was reached over Satterfield's death, court documents claim

The check for $2.96 million above was paid to Murdaugh’s shell company called Forge the same day a settlement was reached over Satterfield’s death, court documents claim 

The housekeeper, Satterfield, had been the employed by the Murdaughs for about 25 years when she died following a mystery ‘trip and fall’ inside the family home in 2018.

Her sons sued the Murdaughs for wrongful death afterward and were awarded $4.3 million. 

But Alex is accused of drafting in a lawyer and banker pal to get his hands on that money instead.

He did so by asking Satterfield’s sons to let Cory Fleming – Murdaugh’s old college roommate – act as their attorney, with Fleming then pursuing the payouts that got Murdaugh the $3.9 million.

Chad Westendorf from Palmetto State Bank was also part of the scheme, and helped ensure Murdaugh got his hands on the money. 

Neither he nor Fleming have been charged with criminal wrongdoing, but the pair and Murdaugh are all named as defendants in a suit brought by Satterfield’s sons Tony Satterfield and Brian Harriott. 

He syphoned off $3.5 million of the insurance payout to his own shell company called Forge – which was actually a PO Box in Hampton, South Carolina, it is claimed. 

The remainder of the $4.3 million settlement is said to have been spent on legal fees.

Alex has also been accused of stealing millions from his law firm PMPED. He resigned from the firm in September, just two days before asking Edward Smith, his cousin turned client, to kill him.   

Medical records released last week have confirmed that he was shot in the head on September 4 in a botched suicide attempt, as he claimed. 

The records were released by the troubled legal heir’s attorney on Friday in an attempt to boost his credibility.    

Murdaugh has said he paid Smith to shoot him on the side of the road. 

He wanted it to look like a drive-by shooting so that Buster, his surviving son, would receive a payout on his life insurance policy. 

Smith did shoot Murdaugh, but he survived and called 911. At first he said he had been killed in a drive-by shooting. 

Edward Smith, an accused hitman, is claiming he had no role in Murdaugh's suicide scam and was trying to stop him from killing himself when the gun went off

Edward Smith, an accused hitman, is claiming he had no role in Murdaugh’s suicide scam and was trying to stop him from killing himself when the gun went off 

Now, Smith – who is facing charges for the incident – is claiming he had no role in the suicide scam and was trying to stop Alex from killing himself when the gun went off. 

The medical records confirm Alex was shot twice and that he had to go to the hospital. 

He had a fractured skull from ‘two superficial appearing bullet wounds to the posterior scalp’ but the bullets did not penetrate his brain. 

When he arrived at the hospital, doctors confirmed he was high on barbiturates – a group of drugs in the class of drugs known as sedative-hypnotics – and opioids. 

The 53-year-old arrived at the hospital with his head bleeding and wrapped in gauze. 

He had to be taken to the ICU because he was in such grave condition. 

The report reveals that he told medics he at first could not see, but that he regained his sight to the point that he was able to see his phone and dial 911.  

He was released after two days in the hospital. 

On Friday, his attorney Dick Harpootlan appeared on Good Morning America in an effort to dispel what he called 'hysterical theories' about his client and paint him as a desperate, drug addict - but not a murderer

On Friday, his attorney Dick Harpootlan appeared on Good Morning America in an effort to dispel what he called ‘hysterical theories’ about his client and paint him as a desperate, drug addict – but not a murderer

But even before the medical records were released, Murdaugh’s attorney Dick Harpootlan made a desperate attempt to clear his name on Friday in a bizarre interview where he said his client knows he is going to prison for financial crimes, did ‘stupid, illegal things’ because he is a drug addict – but insisted he is not behind his wife and son’s murders.  

Harpootlan appeared on Good Morning America in an effort to dispel what he called ‘hysterical theories’ about his client and painted him as a desperate, drug addict – but not a murderer. 

Harpootlan said Murdaugh does not deny financial crimes, would ‘address them’ at a bond hearing next week, and that he is ‘reconciled’ with the fact that he is going to prison for them. 

‘Obviously the financial issue is something he regrets. He is going to try to right every wrong, financial wrong… he is reconciled to the fact he is going to prison. 

‘He understands that. He is a lawyer – he gets it,’ he said.

However, he strongly denied that his client is a murderer and said he had no ‘knowledge or involvement’ in the murders of his wife and son. 

‘He has a long-term, OxyContin addiction which put him in a position where he did these stupid illegal things. 

‘They keep trying to pound that square peg in a round hole. Someone out there is responsible for the horrible, almost execution-style deaths of Maggie and Paul.

‘It is not Alex.’ 

Harpootlan says he is being wrongly suspected because he is the one who found Maggie and Paul dead.

‘When the police show up and they find a dead wife and a dead son and a husband finds them, you know, most times, it’s going to turn out to be the husband is involved. 

Maggie and Paul Murdaugh (left) were found shot dead at the family's home in June. No one has been arrested for their killings and Murdaugh's attorney insists he had nothing to do with them

Maggie and Paul Murdaugh (left) were found shot dead at the family’s home in June. No one has been arrested for their killings and Murdaugh’s attorney insists he had nothing to do with them

‘That [is] unfortunately the assumption SLED [South Carolina Law Enforcement Division] made that night.’ 

Harpootlan added that when he represented Paul in a 2019 case where he was accused of being responsible for the death of teenager Mallory Beach, all he saw was a happy family. 

‘All I saw was domestic tranquility, love and affection,’ he said.  

 He has a long-term, OxyContin addiction which put him in a position where he did these stupid illegal things

The attorney said Alex wants to ‘set the record straight’ and clear up ‘lies’ that had been told in the media, including that Maggie consulted a divorce attorney before she was murdered. 

‘The reason I am on this show this morning is just the thirst for knowledge for this case has driven a number of outlets that are false.’

He also sough to undermine comments made by Eddie Smith – the hitman Alex asked to shoot him in June, and also his cousin – in a botched suicide-by-hitman. 

Smith – who was arrested for the botched shooting – claimed earlier this week that the gun went off as Alex was trying to kill himself. He denied pulling the trigger. 

But Harpootlan says he is lying to get himself out of trouble. 

‘According to Alex, he met with Smith – Smith was his longtime drug dealer. He met with Smith on the side of the road, gave him the gun, said “I’m going to look like I broke down, drive by and shoot me” which is exactly what Smith did.

‘Unfortunately, or fortunately, Smith’s bullet did not penetrate his skull. It did fracture his skull… they had to put him in ICU. He suffered a bullet wound to the head. Eddie Smith is not telling the truth,’ he said.  

Murdaugh in court last month over his botched plot to hire a hitman to kill him for an insurance windfall

Murdaugh in court last month over his botched plot to hire a hitman to kill him for an insurance windfall 

 Harpootlan said that he has known the family for years and that they ‘enjoy success and privilege.’

Alex’s father was a prominent attorney in the area. He died, apparently of natural causes, just days after Maggie and Paul were found dead.

‘The family enjoys status and financial success for over 100 years… with that privilege comes responsibility and Alex has forgotten that at some point,’ his lawyer said.  

Alex said he bought the drugs from Smith, his cousin turned drug-dealer turned hitman.  

Family murders, deaths, drug addictions, thefts and arrests: The riddles facing investigators who’ve now charged Alex Murdaugh 

2015: Teenager Stephen Smith dies

Smith was found on the side of the road. 

Cops investigating the double murder have also reopened the case into a 2015 hit-and-run of teen Stephen Smith (above)

Cops investigating the double murder have also reopened the case into a 2015 hit-and-run of teen Stephen Smith 

Police officially rule his death a hit-and-run but he had suffered blunt force trauma to the head 

His mother has since shared her belief that she thinks he was killed in a hate-crime because he was gay 

Case notes obtained by DailyMail.com revealed Paul’s older brother Buster was named multiple times in the investigation. 

Police wanted to know more about his relationship with Stephen 

Stephen’s mother said he had been having a ‘fling’. 

In a deposition years later, one of Paul’s friends said the family had ‘covered’ other killings up. 

He mentioned Smith’s death.  

2018: Murdaugh family housekeeper Gloria Satterfield dies

Murdaugh family housekeeper Gloria Sattlerfield dies

Murdaugh family housekeeper Gloria Sattlerfield dies

Gloria died after ‘falling’ down the stairs in the family house

The family gave her family $500.000 in a wrongful death settlement but it’s unclear why her death was ruled to be their fault. 

Alex Murdaugh was listed as the defendant in the lawsuit. 

Satterfield was only 57 when she died. 

She left behind a husband and children. 

Her death was also mentioned in the deposition by Paul Murdaugh’s friend.  

2019: Mallory Beach dies being thrown from boat driven by Paul Murdaugh

Mallory Beach, 19, died in February 2019

Mallory Beach, 19, died in February 2019 

Paul was charged afterwards because he’d been drinking and was behaving ‘belligerently’ that night. 

He had been released on bond.  

Other kids were on the boat but were unharmed.

One testified that they were scared to speak about the Murdaugh family because they knew how to ‘cover things up’. 

That boy named Stephen Smith and the housekeeper, and claimed Paul pushed her 

June 7 2021: Paul and Maggie are murdered 

The mom and son were found shot dead at the family home in Hampton, South Carolina. 

Alex Murdaugh says he found them  at the home. 

The medical examiner said the pair had been dead for an hour at most when he discovered them.  

Paul, 22

Margaret, 52

Alex’s son Paul, 22, (left) and wife Maggie, 52, (right) were found dead from multiple gunshot wounds on June 7 at the family hunting lodge 

Alex's father Randolph Murdaugh III died 'peacefully' at home three days after Maggie and Paul were found shot dead

Alex’s father Randolph Murdaugh III died ‘peacefully’ at home three days after Maggie and Paul were found shot dead 

June 10 2021:  Alex’s 81-year-old father Randolph Murdaugh III dies ‘naturally’ and ‘peacefully’ at home

September 3: Alex resigns from his law firm amid claims he misused funds

The firm has hired a forensic investigator to go through the accounts 

September 4: Alex calls 911 claiming he’s been shot in the head in a drive-by. 

He only had ‘surface’ wounds and was also able to call his brother

September 6: Alex resigns from his law firm

The South Carolina legal scion releases a statement confirming his resignation from the firm and announcing he has entered rehab 

He said: ‘I’m resigning from my law firm and entering rehab after a long battle that has been exacerbated these murders.’ 

September 16: Alex turns himself into police over insurance fraud scheme

Murdaugh handed himself over to cops in connection to insurance fraud scheme where he arranged his own killing so that his surviving son could collect $10 million payout.

He faces charges of insurance fraud, conspiracy to commit insurance fraud and filing a false police report.  




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