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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    NAVAJO, ARIZONA USA
    Posts
    186

    Default Robert Russell Apiaries - Update

    I wanted to let everyone know some of the information that I discovered while trying to figure out who stole my hives. Robert Russell is running a big scam. He was going by the name Rob hughes on the phone and in person saying that rob hughes was Roberts employee and crew chief. He is very good at this and always referred to Robert as "Doc" in the third person. He even sent me PM's stating Rob was in Florida running their bees there and he was all over the country tending bees. I discovered this after the sheriffs office showed me a mug shot of Robert Russell and it was the same person I had been working with calling him self rob hughes. I personally do not believe he has more than a few hive and does not have all these different strains. Any strains he does have must of came from his fathers operation. The sheriff's office also told us he was charged in Philadelphia MS with taking someones money for bees and never delivering them. I believe most of the people working for him and running his "Russell apiaries family" sites also know all this. I would recommend anyone with orders with anyone associated with Robert Russell cancel them. The man is a dishonest crook. I speculate but have no proof that he was taking my bees all year long and selling them as nucs with phillip butts, one of his "employees"

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Livermore, CA
    Posts
    1,345

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    Short rope...........tall tree...........oughtta do the trick.
    Coyote Creek Bees

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
    Posts
    3,491

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    When I was falling out of the true believer fold and still frequenting his web site, I remember him offering people his fathers unused honey production yards where huge yields were the norm and his people would take care of them for you! I am sure they never got overpopulated.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    NAVAJO, ARIZONA USA
    Posts
    186

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    Quote Originally Posted by Vance G View Post
    When I was falling out of the true believer fold and still frequenting his web site, I remember him offering people his fathers unused honey production yards where huge yields were the norm and his people would take care of them for you! I am sure they never got overpopulated.
    I think I was one of the few dumb enough to fall for this scam. There was only 10-12 hives of other peoples that were therer when I went to pick up what was left of my hives. If there was any huge honey crop it walked off with my hives.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Ft. Collins, Colorado
    Posts
    493

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    Hey Mtinaz, sorry to hear about all that. Be sure to keep us posted on any more details you find out since you're one of the few that have actually been on the scene. The rest of us only have had our $$ taken and thought RA were crooks. Now you can verify that!

    Might be interesting to have some more chats with Paypal, since that was one of the many ways that RA was able to hide and not return the funds. Good luck, getting anything back from them.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Bardstown, KY
    Posts
    28

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    Quote Originally Posted by Brandy View Post
    Hey Mtinaz, sorry to hear about all that. Be sure to keep us posted on any more details you find out since you're one of the few that have actually been on the scene. The rest of us only have had our $$ taken and thought RA were crooks. Now you can verify that!

    Might be interesting to have some more chats with Paypal, since that was one of the many ways that RA was able to hide and not return the funds. Good luck, getting anything back from them.
    If you paid for something via pay pal and the seller didn't send it to your confirmed address(or sent it at all) and has proof via a tracking or delivery confirmation number Pay pal has to refund your money. I had a friend sell a boat on ebay, buyer paid with Pay pal then a month later(after picking the boat up) called pay pal and cancelled the payment. My friend was told since he didn't send it to the confirmed address listed with pay pal it's as though the buyer never received it and was given a refund. He had to get a lawyer involved and eventually got his money but it was a big harry mess. Google "paypal seller protection" Pay pal is very buyer friendly!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Haymarket, Virginia
    Posts
    193

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud



    Great. If this is the case, what's the likelihood of getting your money back from a subproducer? Sure wish I'd known this before I placed the order....

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Ft. Collins, Colorado
    Posts
    493

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    Try it, ask for the refund before paypals time limit is up!! You gotta believe they also know what's going on.....

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Cattaraugus,New York, USA
    Posts
    306

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    As far as queen strains go, i do believe that we are offering genuinely good queens, we sub producers i mean. I didnt offer to raise and sell some of Russell's more exotic strains, but stuck to the Sunkist Italian, and buckfast. It is not hard to think that these queen types would have the claimed genes that were said that were in them, as there are multiple queen breeders that offer buckfast, such as miksa and ferguson, and there have been multiple advertisments by multiple people, offering the sunkist line, that is really a product of JN Russell. If robert got JN's hives, then he must have gotten JN's genetic lines also. This is speculation on my part, as i have never seen their operation.
    This is why i have offered a refund to anyone that purchased queens from me, as Russell Apiaries NY,for this coming spring, as i do want to raise queens and offer them for sale, and i dont want to add bad blood from such a terrible issue as this.
    specialkayme, i applaude you, it takes a lot for anyone to say that they were wrong, but you also went above and beyond to find out about RA, thank you

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
    Posts
    3,349

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    NY Blues - Kudo's for you for stepping up to the plate and taking responsiblity - it says alot about the kind of person/business person you are as opposed to remaining silent

    Sippy - Taking everyting into account - including your friendship with Ricky - your're golden with me! Perhaps much of your issue was the passion attached to your posts which I now look at as trying prevent further damage. Clearly running 11 hives there is no commercial gain here for you in the near future.

    Mtinaz - What you have told us about the investigation sound like good follow through and I think one way or another RR may end up in hot water up to his neck and those around him who have knowledge will be singing like birds to avoid possible prosecution. In any crime where there is more than one person with knowledge, as obviously stealing your hives was, there will be a weak link in the chain and I suspect The Sheriffs Dept. will find and exploit that link. keep us posted.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Ft. Collins, Colorado
    Posts
    493

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    NY Blues, who did you deal with?? Did you ever speak to Dr. Robert Russell, or only emails? Visit his breeding yards?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    DFW area, TX, USA
    Posts
    956

    Thumbs Up Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    Quote Originally Posted by Joel View Post
    NY Blues - Kudo's for you for stepping up to the plate and taking responsiblity - it says alot about the kind of person/business person you are as opposed to remaining silent

    Sippy - Taking everyting into account - snip- your're golden with me! -snip-

    Mtinaz - What you have told us about the investigation sound like good follow through and I think one way or another RR may end up in hot water up to his neck and those around him who have knowledge will be singing like birds to avoid possible prosecution. -snip-
    Good summary Joel, to which I would add a suggestion that Barry add a new forum listing bad actors in the bee business, actors to avoid if you want to deal with reputable vendors. Also for Barry, consider going to and change Rob Hughes's name to something like: The good Rob Hughes.

    ADDED: A feedback forum like this might help the board in the future. I'm a moderator on the board at that link. The feedback forum is a lion on a leash, but can work for the good of the membership.
    Last edited by Lburou; 02-20-2013 at 10:42 AM. Reason: removed the word admonition
    Lee Burough
    I try to learn from my mistakes, and from yours when you give me a heads up :)

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    SLC, UT
    Posts
    224

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    I'm still finding it hard to reconcile why my order was received and so many others were taken. RR's 'method' in this fiasco seems to have little rhyme or reason and I feel so sorry for those who were taken for much larger amounts of money than I had personally risked.

    I can't seem to find my last post on this in the Russell thread, but to reiterate my experience I ordered a single queen last spring to replace a bad queen in a package I had received. Queen was delayed in the MS post office for 3 days in the heat and did not lay for 3 weeks. After an email to 'victoria' RR sent another queen at no charge overnight USPS. I started the first queen on a nuc who started laying shortly thereafter (banked queen or just the heat?) and both hives did fairly well over the summer seem to be still alive (although it is still too cold here to do a full inspection). Had I thought my money was at risk or any shady business was occurring I would have ordered elsewhere. I can't figure out why he would fulfill mine and send a replacement at his cost yet take so many other's money without so much as a response. It's sad and infuriating.

    I just looked through some of my correspondence with 'Victoria' last spring and saw a message that might help some of you out. I had told her I appreciated them sending a replacement queen so quickly, and asked where I could send a thank you card.

    I will pass that msg along. If you'd like you can send a card to 212 Fannin Landing Cir. Brandon MS 39047. I basically eat, sleep, and live work lately. Lol. Thank you for the kind words and I hope you enjoy your queens.
    Victoria Ball
    Russell Apiaries
    www.russellapiaries.com
    In any case, I'm not sure if that address had been posted earlier but if not maybe it might help someone out. Good luck to you all who have lost their hard earned dollars. You have my sympathies and you've been nicer about it than I would have been.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Millbury, MA, USA
    Posts
    1,652

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    That address is also the address for American Comfort Portable Toilet Rental. 212 Fannin Landing Cir, Brandon, MS 39047. (601) 829-3721

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
    Posts
    9,196

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    Quote Originally Posted by kincade View Post
    212 Fannin Landing Cir. Brandon MS 39047. I basically eat, sleep, and live work lately. Lol. Thank you for the kind words and I hope you enjoy your queens.
    Victoria Ball
    You'll notice on Google that there is no Victoria Ball in Brandon. There are 3 Victoria Ball's in MS and the closest one to this address is over 100 miles away in Louisville! That would be one daily commute, wouldn't it!
    Regards, Barry

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    etowah,Alabama
    Posts
    458

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    That address is where I saw BSH equipment.
    Quote Originally Posted by kincade View Post
    I'm still finding it hard to reconcile why my order was received and so many others were taken. RR's 'method' in this fiasco seems to have little rhyme or reason and I feel so sorry for those who were taken for much larger amounts of money than I had personally risked.

    I can't seem to find my last post on this in the Russell thread, but to reiterate my experience I ordered a single queen last spring to replace a bad queen in a package I had received. Queen was delayed in the MS post office for 3 days in the heat and did not lay for 3 weeks. After an email to 'victoria' RR sent another queen at no charge overnight USPS. I started the first queen on a nuc who started laying shortly thereafter (banked queen or just the heat?) and both hives did fairly well over the summer seem to be still alive (although it is still too cold here to do a full inspection). Had I thought my money was at risk or any shady business was occurring I would have ordered elsewhere. I can't figure out why he would fulfill mine and send a replacement at his cost yet take so many other's money without so much as a response. It's sad and infuriating.

    I just looked through some of my correspondence with 'Victoria' last spring and saw a message that might help some of you out. I had told her I appreciated them sending a replacement queen so quickly, and asked where I could send a thank you card.



    In any case, I'm not sure if that address had been posted earlier but if not maybe it might help someone out. Good luck to you all who have lost their hard earned dollars. You have my sympathies and you've been nicer about it than I would have been.
    BB's Honey
    www.bbshoney.com

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    NAVAJO, ARIZONA USA
    Posts
    186

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    Quote Originally Posted by kincade View Post
    I'm still finding it hard to reconcile why my order was received and so many others were taken. RR's 'method' in this fiasco seems to have little rhyme or reason and I feel so sorry for those who were taken for much larger amounts of money than I had personally risked.

    I can't seem to find my last post on this in the Russell thread, but to reiterate my experience I ordered a single queen last spring to replace a bad queen in a package I had received. Queen was delayed in the MS post office for 3 days in the heat and did not lay for 3 weeks. After an email to 'victoria' RR sent another queen at no charge overnight USPS. I started the first queen on a nuc who started laying shortly thereafter (banked queen or just the heat?) and both hives did fairly well over the summer seem to be still alive (although it is still too cold here to do a full inspection). Had I thought my money was at risk or any shady business was occurring I would have ordered elsewhere. I can't figure out why he would fulfill mine and send a replacement at his cost yet take so many other's money without so much as a response. It's sad and infuriating.
    He also treated me very good in the past sending out queens and refunding some money on some. That is why I trusted him, I never had an issue. I all really is confusing. I know somewhere there is a post from joseph clemens (who I think most would agree is a decent guy) when he got some russell queens about how good they were and how well they did.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Cole County, Missouri
    Posts
    170

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    Quote Originally Posted by kincade View Post

    I can't seem to find my last post on this in the Russell thread, but to reiterate my experience I ordered a single queen last spring to replace a bad queen in a package I had received. Queen was delayed in the MS post office for 3 days in the heat and did not lay for 3 weeks. After an email to 'victoria' RR sent another queen at no charge overnight USPS. I started the first queen on a nuc who started laying shortly thereafter (banked queen or just the heat?) and both hives did fairly well over the summer seem to be still alive (although it is still too cold here to do a full inspection). Had I thought my money was at risk or any shady business was occurring I would have ordered elsewhere. I can't figure out why he would fulfill mine and send a replacement at his cost yet take so many other's money without so much as a response. It's sad and infuriating.

    .
    Wow and my queens were purchased in 2011 a birthday present to myself. All I got was the run around, and I even went as far as defending them and alienating other bee keepers which were assumed to be crazy and lying according to those poising as, and representing RA. I even had one of his guys play against the other a philip was willing to send me queens I was reluctant because I already paid the year before but I needed queens really bad my hives were failing. They were not diseased state even analyzed some samples for me, they were free of mites and disease just bad genetics off an original bad genetic queen I purchased the year before. Well hugh emails me through that forum that philip was a scamster and was stealing queens from RA then selling them as his own. So I did not order them just sat and waited , then I see them chatting up like they were best buddies and business partners this is when I knew something was very wrong but it was much late in the season I went out on a limb and bought some carnies from Ca but not enough time to build and I lost all my hives over the winter. Then Victoria sends me an email that she spoke with RR and said He was going to have his Mo sub producer give me 2 nucs for my troubles which did not happen and Wont the guy told me he has to be paid. Then told me RA was in bankruptcy. He ignored my calls for weeks and emails I had to use another number to get him to answer. I do believe he is a scamster too I even asked him why he was still associated with RA

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    2,277

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    All I can say is that I'm so glad that I dodged this bullet. I was one of the first to start talking with RR about becoming a "sub-producer". We carried out these discussions long before the term "sub-producer" was even considered. We had lengthy PM's about the intricate measures that he required to become part of the family. It all seemed very convoluted and I even bounced it off our state apiarist, who issued a "proceed with caution" note to me. One of the last communications (came through as Robert Hughes) was an invitation to become a sub-producer and the requirement of over $3000 to join the "club". With all the complaints coupled with "cloak and mirror" nonsense discussed in our PM's I decided that there were other avenues to queen rearing.

    He sure seemed real.... I guess this is why so many gotten taken. A colleague from one of our local clubs got taken based upon my recommendation. I plan to make it right with that man this season by providing replacement queens free of charge.
    Horseshoe Point Honey -- http://localvahoney.com/

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Ft. Collins, Colorado
    Posts
    493

    Default Re: Robert Russell is a fraud

    AstroBee, that was a pretty good sized bullet you dodged!

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