Ex-Dixon comptroller Crundwell sentenced 235 months for $54M fraud

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Former Dixon Comptroller Rita Crundwell was sentenced today to 235 months in prison — about 19 1/2 years behind bars — for stealing nearly $54 million from the city.

A Federal Judge in Rockford also sentenced Crundwell to 3 years probation and ordered her to pay over $53 million in restitution.

The judge revoked her bond and ordered her to be taken into custody immediately, saying not only could she be a flight risk but that he feared there could be retaliation against her.

Crundwell spoke briefly before she was sentenced.  Through her tears she said she was sorry and that the city of Dixon were her family and friends.

The scandal was exposed last April.  Crundwell pleaded guilty in November to wire fraud and admitted that over 20 years she stole close to $54 million from the small city of Dixon to finance her lavish lifestyle of big homes, championship horses, extravagant parties, luxury cars and high-end jewelry, all while telling city officials there was no money in the city coffers — essentially that the city was broke and that they could not take care of essential services.

Her attorney tried to argue for leniency, saying that she admitted her guilt right away, cooperated with authorities and sold off possessions to make restitution.  But the judge was not buying it.

There were a number of family and friends in the court, as well as Dixon city officials.

In the end, the judge told Rita Crundwell she was going away for a very, very long time, and to have a good day.

Crundwell’s attorney asked the judge to recommend to the Bureau of Prisons that Crundwell be sent to a facility close to Beloit, Wisconsin.  The judge said he would make that recommendation.

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  • Mike

    And sadly, the taxpayers are on the hook, because it's our tax dollars that fund the prisons. So she will STILL be costing money. Instead of locking her up in prison on tax-payers' dimes, per se, maybe she should be sent to a hard-labor camp and let her sweat it off. I'm sure she had that experience taking care of all those prized horses. Let her make a few bucks an hour, standing knee deep in waste or a run-off "pond" at some farm and see how she likes it. It's just so sad for the residents of Dixon, IL.

  • No Mercy

    Oh the tears, that's what people resort to – going back to their childhood days when crying got them out of trouble, sorry but you are not six years old anymore, you're an old withered up selfish hag who belongs in jail. She knew damn well what she was doing the entire time. I mean 54 million dollars, are you kidding me? She shouldn't be allowed to see the light of day!

  • arubatom

    As an internal auditor and certified fraud examiner, I applaud the judge's sentence. There have been too many wrist-slap sentences handed out for white collar crimes….a crime of this $$$ magnitude and over such a length of time deserves a stiff sentence!

  • Babe

    I still find it hard to believe that NOBODY in Dixon knew about this but her? And you can't tell me that an $8.00 an hour temp found this? Really? I think there's some more people in Dixon who should be joining her.

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