(CBS/AP) ROCKFORD, Ill. - Former financial officer Rita Crundwell was sentenced to 19 and 1/2 years in prison for embezzling more than $53 million from the northern Illinois city of Dixon, reports CBS affiliate WIFR.
She will reportedly be required to serve at least 17 years, but could get out early for good behavior.
Before Crundwell's was sentenced Thursday in Rockford federal court she gave a tearful apology to the city of Dixon, WIFR reports.
She pleaded guilty in November to wire fraud, admitting she stole the money from the city of Dixon while she was comptroller. She still faces 60 separate but related state felony charges for theft in Lee County. She has pleaded not guilty to those charges.
According to CBS affiliate WHBF, Dixon Mayor Jim Burke read a statement at the sentencing hearing, calling Crudwell's theft "a massive ripoff of public money." He argued she should get the maximum sentence.
Crundwell's public defender had asked for a lenient prison sentence, saying Crundwell has cooperated with investigators.