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Ponzi schemer's Idaho Falls mansion goes on auction

Ponzi schemer's mansion put on auction

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho - He wanted to live the life of a Ponzi prince, and he almost got his wish.

Now Daren Palmer's in jail, but the home he started building five years ago is still standing strong--strong and empty.

After four years on the market without any takers, it's being put on the auction block.

"It's a lovely home, and someone will appreciate what's here," said Susan Weaver, the estate agent handling the property. "There are people with enough money in the state of Idaho to afford it."

Lovely's an understatement. It's 16,000 square feet, with six bedrooms and six bathrooms. The list of features just goes on and on.

There's also a sauna, heated staircase, an indoor water fountain, gym, theater room, pool house, two three-car garages, and a half basketball court connected to the rest of the house by way of an underground tunnel.

Then there's all the fireplaces.

"I believe there's seven. I told the people I just showed it to to count, because I lose count, but I think there's seven fireplaces," Weaver said.

And no Ponzi schemer's home would be complete without a built-in safe.

Although no one expects the home to fetch anywhere near the $6.9 million Palmer poured into it (the last listing price was $1.9 million), whatever money is made from its sale will go to recoup investors.

If you're interested in bidding, you can contact David Jaffe at 310-798-3123 ext. 225. You have until Dec. 12 to make a bid. There's no minimum, but you will need to pay $20,000 in order to become a qualified bidder.

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