IllinoisVictims.org shares an appeal from a crime victim in McHenry County
We have always welcomed the stories of crime victims from around the state to this website. We received this story from a resident of McHenry County who wishes only to be identified as "D.A.S." and this is our only non-violent crime story that we have published on this website, but we always want to accommodate if we can the requests of any crime victim that comes to us .
It is a property crime, and being a victim of fraud and corrupt behavior at the hands of another can also be a traumatizing experience, just as a violent crime. This property crime is a serious one, nonetheless, because of the high dollar values involved. D.A.S. has been on a crusade since 2004 trying to obtain justice, thus far to no avail. Here is the story:
DAS, a resident of McHenry County, gave items from an estate he/she had long been caretaker of to an auctioneer for disbursement. Among those items were extremely rare and valuable endangered species head mounts that are actually regulated by the US Fish and Wildlife Dept. The Auctioneer was obligated by contract to sell those head mounts for a minimum set high price ($25K at least per item). These items belong to a collection of a famous person, some items of which had actually been on display in the Smithsonian. And they are by law only allowed to be sold to an Illinois resident. The auctioneer however sold the head mounts for almost nothing ($300 - $500 respectively) and out of ten endangered species, he sold 8 and DAS has no idea what happened to two of them. D.A.S. found out that some were definitely sold out of state.
D.A.S. reports that the reason that the auctioneer has never been forced to properly be held accountable for ripping off D.A.S. is that he is a powerful McHenry county businessman who has political connections that have kept him from being pursued by the authorities. And the US Fish and Wildlife has chosen not to do a proper investigation. The victim believes that the US Fish and Wildlife staffer is a friend of the auctioneer. He actually threatened the victim when D.A.S. tried to get back the monies the auctioneer owed him/her. D.A.S. allocated $15,000 for ads for the auction, but only a few hundred were spent. The auctioneer wanted few to none to attend the auction so that he could sell the valuable items to his friends for pennies on the dollar.
D.A.S. is calling for an effort to identify other victims of dishonest auctioneers. If you know anyone who has ever been so victimized, or if you would like to join the victim in calling for justice in this case, please CONTACT US. The victim in this case is considering a march on Washington to get action, since state and local authorities have refused to act.
Also, calls to Attorney General Lisa Madigan's office are encouraged. That is the office that oversees the "Banks and Real Estate" department governing auctioneer complaints. D.A.S. said that the local media is also not willing to take a public stand against the powerful but apparently corrupt auctioneer businessman, and has not publicized this story. D.A.S. is concerned that others will be victims of this man.