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Reclusive Billionaire May Face Court Date

Posted Apr 5, 2007 11:16 AM CDT
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Philip Anschutz, the publicity-shy 67-year-old billionaire who earned his fortune at Quest Communications, may be called as a witness in two trials in the coming weeks.

A production company owned by Anschutz is fighting novelist Clive Cussler over who is to blame for the cinematic bomb "Sahara," the Los Angeles Times reports. He may also be called as a defense witness in the prosecution of Joseph Nacchio, the former chief executive of Qwest Communications who is charged with 42 counts of insider trading.

The last time Anschutz was interviewed by a reporter was 1974, despite the fact he owns daily newspapers in San Francisco, Washington and Baltimore. The day after he last testified in a court, in 1990, his picture was on the front page of the Denver Post. He abruptly settled the case for $750,000 in cash and forgiveness of almost $3 million in loans and interest, according to confidential records obtained by the Times.

His personal fortune of $7.8 billion ranks him 31st on Forbes' list of the richest people in America.

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