Carl R. Channell

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Carl Russell Channell, aka Spitz Channell, died May 7, 1990, in Washington, D.C. at the age of 44[1]. Channell's name will forever be linked to the Iran/Contra scandal.

According to Judge Walsh's final report, Channell "Pleaded guilty April 29, 1987, to one felony count of conspiracy to defraud the United States. U.S. District Judge Stanley S. Harris sentenced Channell on July 7, 1989, to two years probation."

"Carl 'Spitz' Channell, who, as a director of International Business Communications, became a principal contractor for the OPD (now-defunct Office for Public Diplomacy). An extreme right-winger, Channell played a key role in raising funds used to buy arms for the contras. Between 1984 and 1986, Otto Juan Reich's office entered into contracts with IBC worth $440,000. The State Department's Inspector General's Office concluded after an investigation that OPD improperly labeled these deals as 'secret' in order to avoid bidding them out publicly.

"Under the direction of Oliver North, Channell raised money from wealthy right-wing donors, who were in turn granted White House visits with Reagan and briefings from North. The money was also funneled into attack campaigns against politicians who opposed the Central American policy. Some of these funds, for example, paid for ads that pictured Maryland Congressman Michael D. Barnes as an ally of Fidel Castro and Ayatollah Khomeini.

"Channell was convicted in 1987 of defrauding the government and using his non-profit National Endowment for the Preservation of Liberty to raise funds, and then shifting the money to secret bank accounts used to purchase arms for the war on Nicaragua."[1]

"The Hay-Adams loomed large yesterday as conservative fundraiser Carl (Spitz) Channell pleaded guilty to conspiring to cheat the government of taxes on more than $2 million raised to arm the Nicaraguan rebels -- with the aid, Channell said, of fired White House functionary Lt. Col. Oliver North."[2]

"...Western Goals essentially collapsed after the death of Larry McDonald in September of 1983. John Rees left shortly after McDonald's death. Western Goals discontinued its domestic dossier and intelligence operation shortly after the departure of Rees. A contentious battle over control of Western Goals and the alienation of key funders left the foundation essentially a shell which was taken over by a conservative fundraiser Carl Russell "Spitz" Channell who turned it into a conduit for contra fundraising efforts linked to North and Iran-Contragate."[3]

Articles and resources


  1. Michael Wines (1990-05-09). Carl Channell, 44, Fund-Raiser For Conservatives, Dies of Injuries - Obituary. New York Times. Retrieved on 2011-03-24. “Carl R. (Spitz) Channell, a fund-raiser for conservative political causes who pleaded guilty to criminal charges stemming from the Iran-contra affair, died Monday of complications from injuries he suffered in a traffic accident two months ago. He was 44 years old. Mr. Channell was struck by a car on March 15 as he stood beside his car on a street in southeast Washington, according to the District of Columbia police. The District of Columbia medical examiner's office said Mr. Channell died of complications from lobar pneumonia from the accident, in which he suffered a fractured skull and a broken right leg. Before the accident, Mr. Channell had been undergoing chemotherapy for lung cancer, said a former associate who added that the treatment had apparently succeeded.”
  2. Lloyd Grove, "The Hay-Adams & The Scandal Revelations", Washington Post, April 30, 1987; Page B01.
  3. Chip Berlet, "The Maldon Institute",, Political Research Associates, September 8, 2000.

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