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Crundwell farm fetches more than $1.2M

DIXON – The U.S. Marshals Service is getting closer to selling off five pieces of property once owned by ousted Comptroller Rita Crundwell.

Longtime farmers Mark and Gloria Nusbum of M & R Farms bought the 81 acres of farmland on Nachusa Road for $1.271 million.

“My wife and I are pleased to be able to buy a good farm that adjoins one we own,” Mark Nusbaum said Friday in a written statement to Sauk Valley Media. “We are also mindful that the former tenant of that farm has lost a farm, a farm he once owned.”

He declined further comment.

County records show that Crundwell bought the farmland for $504,000 in July 2006. Crundwell was leasing the farm to her brother, Richard Humphrey Sr., before her April 17 arrest.

Marshals received an initial unsolicited offer of $540,000 for the property.

The new owners will continue to farm the land, according to a deed filed on Friday with the Lee County Clerk’s Office.

Crundwell’s nephew, Richard “Rick” Humphrey and his wife Brenda, closed on Crundwell’s quarter horse ranch at 1556 Red Brick Road property late last week.

The couple, who intend to use the ranch to expand their show cattle and beef business, paid $1,134,375.

Jason Wojdylo, chief inspector of the marshal’s asset forfeiture division, said offers on both properties came in above the competitive market range and that he was satisfied with the results.

Wojdylo said he hopes that Crundwell’s Dutch Road property will close within the next week or two.

Last month, marshals announced that the final offers on all three properties came in at more than $3 million.

Her primary residence at 1679 U.S. Route 52 in Dixon is under contract and will close within the next 30 to 45 days, Wojdylo said.

Crundwell, 60, pleaded guilty to wire fraud in November and admitted that she stole nearly $54 million in taxpayer money since 1990 to pay for much of her assets, including her herd of more than 400 quarter horses.

Crundwell faces up to 20 years in prison at her sentencing hearing Thursday. She has agreed to pay full restitution in the case.

So far, marshals have raised about $11 million from the sale of her assets.

Marshals still are trying to sell Crundwell’s vacation home in Englewood, Fla. Wojdylo said he has received – and rejected – four offers on the property since December.

There are two others who have expressed interest in the property, but have not put in a formal offer, he said.

Wojdylo said if the property does not receive any unsolicited bids by the week of Feb. 24, he will begin interviewing real estate agents to sell the property.

A commission, typically 6 percent, and closing costs would come out of the proceeds of the sale, Wojdylo said.

Marshals also are selling 228 pieces of Crundwell’s jewelry Feb. 23 at an auction in Texas.

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