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Feds: Ex-comptroller to plead guilty in $53M scam

Associated Press Modified: November 13, 2012 at 3:46 pm •  Published: November 13, 2012

Authorities say Crundwell bought luxury homes and vehicles, and spent millions on her horse-breeding operation, RC Quarter Horses LLC, which produced 52 world champions in exhibitions run by the American Quarter Horse Association.

Prosecutors say Crundwell's scheme unraveled only after a co-worker filling in for her while she was on an extended vacation stumbled upon the secret bank account.

Her arrest stunned Dixon, a small city along a picturesque vein of the Mississippi River in Illinois farm country. Its 16,000 residents are largely lower-middle class, working at factories, grain farms, the local prison and a hospital, among other places.

Crundwell also has pleaded not guilty to 60 separate but related felony theft counts in Lee County.