Rita Crundwell

Rita Crundwell, former comptroller for Dixon, Ill., leaves federal court in Rockford, Ill., Monday, May 7, 2012, after pleading not guilty at her arraignment to charges that accuse her of stealing tens of millions of dollars from the community. Prosecutors contend that Crundwell had been transferring Dixon's money to a secret account since at 1990 and using the money to create one of the nation's leading horse-breeding operations and buy luxury homes, cars and jewelry. (AP Photo/Robert Ray)

Robert Ray

DIXON, Ill. — A relative of former Dixon comptroller Rita Crundwell, who embezzled $53 million from the northern Illinois city, has purchased the quarter horse ranch she developed with the stolen funds.

Brenda and Richard Humphrey Jr. purchased the property formerly owned by Crundwell for $1.13 million.

Richard Humphrey said Tuesday he bought the 88-acre site to expand Humphreys Show Cattle. The couple also owns Affordable Waste, Dixon’s contracted garbage provider.

Jason Wojdylo of the U.S. Marshals Service, which is selling Crundwell’s assets, says the Humphreys did not have an advantage in buying the property.

Crundwell pleaded guilty and is scheduled to be sentenced next week. Authorities say the theft, which lasted 20 years, enabled Crundwell to build a world-renowned quarter horse breeding operation and live a luxurious lifestyle.

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