South Hill businessman Russell Ashby Lundy III entered guilty pleas to 51 charges resulting from a car finance scam involving Lundy Motors in South Hill. Lundy was arrested in December of 2018 following a lengthy investigation by local and state agencies into the financial activities of Lundy Motors in South Hill. According to reports, the scam involved some 60 customers and included fraudulent auto loan payoffs, gap insurance payments and warranties.
Lundy, who was originally charged with more than 100 charges related to the scam, entered guilty pleas to 51 charges in a plea agreement. The agreement, however, did not include any sentencing suggestions, and Lundy could spend the rest of his life in prison for the crimes.
Prince Edward Commonwealth’s Attorney Megan Clark was appointed as special prosecutor of the case after Mecklenburg Commonwealth’s Attorney Allen Nash recused himself, citing a conflict of interest with Lundy and his family.
According to evidence presented by Clark on Monday, the scam ran from the fall of 2015 into May of 2018 and included:
- Failing to transmit insurers payment for gap insurance and service contracts from customers;
- Taking out loans under his wife and mother’s names without their knowledge, supposedly to buy vehicles for the business to sell;
- Selling what he said were unencumbered vehicles while knowing that the vehicles were encumbered.;
- Failing to pay off loan balances on vehicles which were traded in for other vehicles; and
- Selling vehicles that were previously provided as collateral for a loan, then failing to pay off the original loan.
Judge Anderson Nelson accepted Lundy’s pleas of guilty and ordered a pre-sentence report returnable before Lundy’s June 26 sentencing. Lundy was allowed to remain free prior to sentencing under a $10,000 bond. Lundy is also required to abide by a 7 p.m. curfew each night unless he is working.