Prosecutors: Dixon CFO embezzled $30M
The chief finance officer of the small town of Dixon embezzled more than $30 million over the last six years and used the money to finance a lavish lifestyle that included horse stables in Illinois and Wisconsin, federal prosecutors alleged.
Rita Crundwell, 58, was charged with a single count of wire fraud Tuesday and was taken into custody. Federal agents served warrants and seized contents of her bank accounts, seven trucks and trailers, a $2 million motor home and a Ford Thunderbird—all of which prosecutors allege were paid for with money taken from city bank accounts by Crundwell.
Crundwell, who has been comptroller of the northwest Illinois town of 15,000 since the early 1980s, was scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court in Rockford this afternoon, according to a statement from U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald’s office.
The federal indictment alleged Crundwell raided millions from the town’s accounts, including $3.2 million since just last fall. The thefts came to light when she took vacation and an employee filling in for her noticed suspicious transactions in several city accounts.
Bank records obtained by the FBI allegedly show Crundwell illegally withdrew $30,236,503 from Dixon accounts since July 2006 , money she used, among other things, to buy a 2009 Liberty Coach Motor home for $2.1 million; a tractor truck for $147,000; a horse trailer for $260,000; and $2.5 million in credit card payments for items that included $340,000 in jewelry.
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