This 6,000-square-foot house is selling cheap – if you don't mind booby traps

Ed and Elaine Brown were sentenced to prison for tax evasion in 2007, but the government is having a hard time selling their booby-trapped property in New Hampshire.

Jim Cole/AP
The home of Ed and Elaine Brown in Plainfield, N.H., Jan. 7, 2007. The property, owned by convicted tax evaders, will once again be auctioned for sale on Thursday.

Officials in Plainfield, New Hampshire, are having a difficult time selling a 100-acre property once owned by infamous tax evaders Ed and Elaine Brown.

The Browns were sentenced to five years in prison for tax evasion in 2009, after staging a nine-month armed standoff with US marshals who were charged with taking the couple into custody. Now Mr.. and Ms. Brown are serving 37 and 35-year sentences respectively.

The compound will again be auctioned for sale on Oct. 22, after a failed attempt to sell the property on Aug. 15, 2014 for $250,000. Elaine Brown’s former dental office in Lebanon, N.H., will also be for sale.

To entice buyers, the minimum bids for both the Browns’ house and Elaine’s dental office have been cut in half from the first sale attempt, with price tags of $125,000 for the compound and $250,000 for the office. And now buyers will have 45 days to fund their purchase, up from the seven-day mandate in the previous auction. As an added incentive, buyers can now preview the site before buying.

A 6,000 square foot home on a 100-acre property may sound like a steal for $125,000. So why are liquidators worried the property still won’t sell?

During the standoff, Ed Brown assured law enforcement and the public that there were booby traps and explosives hidden throughout his property.

“The chief of police in this town, the sheriff, the sheriff himself will die. This is war now folks,” Brown said during a radio interview.

“They can’t guarantee that they’ve found everything,” IRS liquidation specialist Roger Sweeney explains to WMUR9 News. He also says the potential of explosive devices on the property is included in the notice of sale.

And the house comes with several other quirks. The Browns built their house on and around an existing structure, and portions of the original roof are visible from inside the home. There is also a hidden door at the back of a closet, which leads to an underground bunker and an escape route outside through a manhole. Another odd structure in the house is Ed Brown’s 360-degree turret that he used to survey his property during the standoff.

The real losers here might be the local towns of Plainfield and Lebanon, New Hampshire who are owed $196,000 and $324,000 in back taxes, respectively.

This report contains material from the Associated Press.

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