Marc Rich Denies Strong Tie to Oil-for-Food

Billionaire fugitive financer Marc Rich (search) has declared to congressional investigators probing the Oil-for-Food scandal that he had a limited role in the program and knew nothing about Saddam Hussein's bribery schemes.

But Rich, who currently lives in Switzerland, recently confirmed what his own company would not admit to FOX News last year — that he was authorized to buy and sell oil as part of the billion-dollar U.N. program.

He personally replied to written questions submitted to him by the House International Relations Committee through the Swiss Embassy earlier this week.

"Mr. Rich's answers were non-responsive, which is no surprise because we believe he knows more than he wishes to acknowledge," said a spokesman for committee chairman Rep. Henry Hyde (search), R-Ill.

Rich has a long history of oil dealing; he was charged with tax evasion and violating the American ban on selling oil to Iran in the 1980s. He was pardoned by President Clinton in January 2001.

In his congressional statement, Rich — who refused to speak to investigators face to face — said his only involvement with the Oil-for-Food (search) program was in 1992, when the Swiss government sent his name to the United Nations for consideration as an approved trader.

"I remember that some of our companies applied to participate in this U.N.-led program and that we had been approved by the Swiss authorities but — as far as I can recall — nothing came of it," Rich wrote.

Hyde's investigators also asked Rich: "Did you at any time hear allegations that Iraqi officials were rewarding friends by providing oil vouchers or other bribes?"

Rich answered: "I have heard such allegations recently though the media but I do not recall when I have first heard them."

Congressional sources told FOX News that they do not believe Rich is being completely forthcoming about his dealings with Oil-for-Food.

The news comes as a federal grand jury in New York continues to probe the Clinton pardon. Rich's ex-wife, Denise, also gave more than $400,000 to the Clinton presidential library and prosecutors have continued to investigate if that was a payoff; Clinton and Denise Rich (search) both deny those allegations.

FOX News' Eric Shawn and The New York Post contributed to this report.