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Local

Feds re-selling one of Crundwell’s horses

Buyer didn’t come up with money

DIXON – And then there was one.

The U.S. Marshals Services and Virginia-based Professional Auction Services this week are re-selling one of Rita Crundwell’s horses in an online auction.

Online bidding for Whiteless, a 2010 bay mare, will be accepted from now until 8:30 p.m. Thursday at the auction company’s website, www.professionalauction.com.

The horse sold for $42,000 in September during a large, live auction of more than 300 of Crundwell’s horses at her ranch south of Dixon.

Eighty of her horses were sold online.

Jason Wojdylo, chief inspector of the U.S. Marshals Service’s asset forfeiture division, said in an email Tuesday that Whiteless’ original buyer did not pony up the funds for the horse after the auction.

The buyer, who bid online during the live auction, forfeited the $250 deposit bidders were required to make, Wojdylo said.

Wojdylo said that PAS relocated the horse to a farm in Caseyville after the auction. That did not cost anything to the marshals, he said.

The sale of Crundwell’s horses, tack, trucks, trailers, and other equipment came 5 months after Crundwell’s arrest at City Hall.

Federal prosecutors say the former Dixon comptroller misappropriated more than $53 million in city funds over two decades to pay for her horse operations and her “lavish lifestyle.”

She has a status hearing this morning. She also is charged with 60 counts of theft in Lee County.

Marshals were tasked with caring for Crundwell’s herd of more than 400 of Crundwell’s horses since shortly after she was indicted in May.

The horses and other items brought in nearly $6.43 million between the online and live auction.

Marshals also are planning to auction numerous other items, such as furniture and vehicles, in the future.

Her 2009 Liberty Elegant Lady Coach sold online for $800,000.

Eleven of Crundwell’s vehicles will be sold Oct. 20 at an auction at Mensik Auto Auction in Chicago. Other vehicles in Wisconsin and Englewood, Fla., will be auctioned online at a later date.

Wojdylo said Tuesday that marshals still are working through the remaining personal property and are in the process of tagging items in her Dixon home.

The next step will be to post a solicitation for auction companies and award a contract for a live and online auction.

Those auctions could happen in early to mid-November, Wojdylo said.

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