Dow Jones

WASHINGTON - A contribution made by Bank of America Corp. to former President Bill Clinton's presidential library has come under the scrutiny of congressional investigators, who suspect a link to a pardon Clinton granted weeks later.

Nascar team owner Rick Hendrick of Charlotte, N.C., who pleaded guilty to mail fraud in 1997, was pardoned Dec. 22, less than three weeks after the Bank of America Foundation pledged $500,000 to Clinton's library fund.

Hugh McColl Jr., chairman of Bank of America, wrote a letter on behalf of Mr. Hendrick, who was on the board of the company's predecessor, NationsBank Corp.

A House committee investigating pardons that Mr. Clinton made in his final weeks in office began looking into the possible link Monday, The Charlotte Observer reported.

The company has denied any connection between the donation and Mr. McColl's recommendation for a pardon. "We have made contributions to all presidential libraries going back to President Carter," said spokesman Scott Scredon.

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