WASHINGTON (Oct. 29)
Former U.S. Attorney General Richard S. Kleindienst is working for the Algerian government in the United States and getting $12,000 a month in salary and expenses for his services, records at the U.S. Department of Justice disclosed.
Kleindienst was hired a year ago by Algeria’s oil chief M. Abdesselam, who is Minister for Industry and energy, for a “trial period” that could be renewed, in Abdesselam’s words, by “tacit agreement for a new period of twelve months and so forth without interruption.” There was no indication that Kleindienst is to discontinue these services.
The contractual arrangements were contained in a letter from Abdesselam to Kleindienst on Oct. 3,1973 which offered to engage the former Nixon Cabinet officer as “legal counsel for business circles, Congressional relations and relations with various official governmental bodies In Washington, D.C. and the rest of the United States.”
DOING UTMOST TO SERVE ALGERIA
In addition, Abdesselam wrote, “We shall entrust you with specific missions which we shall describe in detail when the moment arrives.” For this Kleindienst was to receive $10,000 monthly in salary and a monthly average of $2000 in expenses. In his response to Abdesselam on Dec. 3. 1973, Kleindienst accepted the Algerian’s offer and said; “I will do my utmost to serve you and your government well.”
First information on Kleindienst’s services to Algeria came to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency from Jack M. Kahn of Newton, Mass., a graduate Journalism student at American University here. Kahn said he saw the Kleindienst file while doing research for an article.
Kleindienst, who identified himself in his reports filed under the U.S. Foreign Agents Registration Act as an attorney, said that he was engaged in “general professional legal serviced on a continuing basis for the government of Algeria” and that “in addition,” he “also participated, with others, in making arrangements by which officers of the government of Algeria met with officers of the government of the United States.” Algeria and the United States do not have formal diplomatic arrangements.
Kleindienst was Deputy Attorney General and Attorney General in the Nixon Administration. He resigned on April 30,1973. Last May he received a suspended sentence after being convicted for a misdemeanor on the basis of his testimony at Senate confirmation hearings. He now practices law in Washington.