Posted Online: Nov. 28, 2012, 5:29 pm

Marshals selling ex-Dixon comptroller's ranches, home

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DIXON, Ill. (AP) The U.S. Marshals Service is selling off farm land, horse ranches and a residence seized from a former city official in northern Illinois who stole more than $53 million in public funds.

Rita Crundwell has pleaded guilty to federal charges and will be sentenced in February for the theft, which took place over two decades until her arrest in April.

The former Dixon comptroller used the money to fund a nationally renowned horse-breeding operation and a lavish lifestyle complete with luxury automobiles.

The Marshals Service announced Wednesday it is selling ranch property and a single-family residence in Dixon, as well as farm land in Lee County.

So far, it has recovered $7.4 million from the auctions of 400 quarter horses, vehicles and trailers. The money will go toward restitution.