Skip to comments.Pardoned oil financier gets degree (Marc Rich; Bar-Ilan University)
Posted on 05/15/2007 1:55:59 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
JERUSALEM - An Israeli university awarded an honorary doctorate Tuesday to billionaire Marc Rich, who was pardoned of tax evasion charges by President Clinton in 2001 and founded of an oil trading firm under investigation for dealings with Saddam Hussein.
Bar-Ilan University, located outside Tel Aviv, conferred the degree in recognition of the financier's contributions to Israel and the university's research programs, it said in a statement.
Officials declined to say how much Rich has given the university, but said his donations have supported research for treatments of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases.
The university also cited Rich's financial aid in helping Israel resettle immigrants from Yemen, Ethiopia and the former Soviet Union.
Rich, 72, made his fortune as a commodities trader and is widely credited with developing the crude oil "spot market." In February, Forbes magazine listed his worth at $1.5 billion.
In 1983, Rich left the U.S. for Switzerland after he was charged with tax evasion and illegal oil trading with Iran. Clinton pardoned Rich of all criminal charges on his last day in office in 2001, drawing accusations he granted clemency as a favor to Rich's ex-wife, Denise, a prominent Democratic party donor. A subsequent investigation produced no charges.
In 2005, a commission investigating the U.N. oil-for-food scandal concluded the Marc Rich Group a Swiss-based oil trading firm illegally gave kickbacks to Iraqi officials under Saddam.
Swiss authorities launched an investigation, which is still ongoing. The company has denied the accusations.
Teeeeth or tiiiits?