Shortly after prison release, notorious con man accused of trying to steal woman's home

EXCLUSIVE: Convicted swindler accused of new scams
Published: Mar. 26, 2018 at 10:04 PM HST|Updated: Mar. 27, 2018 at 12:24 PM HST
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(Image: Hawaii News Now)
(Image: Hawaii News Now)

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A notorious Hawaii con man who ripped off hundreds of people decades ago is now accused of trying to steal an elderly Manoa woman's home.

Royal Lamarr Hardy, 62, spent 13 years in prison on federal tax fraud charges. He gained notoriety for advising thousands of clients on how to avoid paying millions of dollars in federal taxes.

According to a recent report by the U.S. Probation Office, Hardy was living in a federal halfway house in 2016 and used the name "Royal Solomon" when he befriended a 78-year-old homeowner facing foreclosure.

The report said Hardy promised she could stay in her home until she died in return for $1,250 a month. But then Hardy and his friends moved to evict her.

"She had received an eviction notice from one of her tenants the day before, claiming that she no longer owned her house and she had to move out by Monday," said deputy Prosecutor Scott Spallina.

"Our concern is that … this may not have been their only victim."

Spallina said that he and an attorney with the state Office of Consumer Protection managed to stop the eviction.

Mortgage rescue schemes are illegal in Hawaii.

"If someone says 'Oh, I can save your house if you give me five grand or $10,000, I'll talk to your mortgage company to save your house' … you can't do that in Hawaii," said Steve Levins, executive director of the Consumer Protection Office.

While he's only been out for 12 months, Hardy faces other legal problems as well.

He's accused of violating the terms of his release. During a recent search of his apartment, the federal probation office said it found "passports of at least three individuals and personal information … including social security numbers."

He's now back in federal custody and a hearing on whether he'll spend more time in prison is set for Friday.

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