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Al Parish (born in the late-1950s) is a former Charleston Southern University economist, who was sentenced to federal prison after pleading guilty to financial fraud. Nearly 300 people lost up to $66 million invested in Parish Economic's private investment funds. Before being charged with fraud, Parish was known as a flamboyant local financial expert dubbed 'Economan', and was known for his $1.2 million pen collection, including a $170,000 diamond-encrusted pen. Included in the fraud was over $4 Million set aside for Athletic Facilities improvements at Charleston Southern University.
He began serving a 24-year sentence in the summer of 2008 after pleading guilty to orchestrating a Ponzi scheme, and was ordered to pay restitution of $66.8 million. Investigators believe they will recover $9–15 million for investors, but the investigation has cost more than $2 million.
- Smith, Bruce (5 October 2007). "S.C. economist pleads guilty in fraud". USA Today. The Associated Press. Retrieved 2009-09-29.
- Stock, Kyle; Schuyler Kropf (26 June 2008). "Al Parish discusses the collapse of his investment empire". The Post and Courier. Retrieved 2009-09-29.
- "Economan: Superthief". American Greed. CNBC. Retrieved 2009-09-29.
- Associated Press (9 November 2006). "College Professor Displays $170,000 Pen". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2009-09-29.[dead link]
- Kropf, Schuyler; Kyle Stock (24 February 2008). "Parish's 4 homes expected to go quickly at auction". The Post and Courier. Retrieved 2009-09-29.
- Stock, Kyle (27 July 2007). "Hunt for Parish's stuff cost nearly $13,000 a day". The Post and Courier. Retrieved 2009-09-29.
- Owens, Andy (14 July 2009). "Al Parish, Bernie Madoff to be jailmates in N.C.". Charleston Regional Business Journal. Retrieved 2009-09-29.
- Parish Economics website in June 2006, featuring the 'Economan' cartoon.
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