Sea Nymph Motel Owner Arrested for Tax Evasion

Thursday, July 6th, 2017

Esta Lewis Hucks, owner of the Sea Nymph Motel in Horry County, was arrested today by South Carolina Department of Revenue (SCDOR) investigators. Hucks is charged with seven counts of failure to file sales and accommodations tax returns and one count of operating a business without a retail license. In 2009, Hucks pled guilty and was convicted of two counts of failing to file sales tax returns for this same motel.

The motel's gross sales from August 2010 through tax year 2016 totaled $181,192. Hucks did not file state sales and accommodations tax returns for that time period. She admitted to knowingly collecting sales and accommodations taxes and failing to file the tax returns.

The SCDOR revoked the motel's retail license in March 2015 for failing to file sales tax returns. Hucks was advised of the penalties for operating the business without a retail license, but she continued to do so.

Hucks is currently being held at the J Reuben Long Detention Center. If convicted, she faces fines up to $10,000 and/or up to one year in prison per count of failure to file sales tax and a fine up to $200 or up to 30 days in jail for operating without a business license.

The SCDOR is committed to the fair administration of tax laws. By taking enforcement action against noncompliant taxpayers, the Department seeks to prevent unfairly increasing the tax burden on those who do comply.