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One last joy ride for Countrywide President David Sambol?

August 1, 2008 |  5:39 pm

The Times' Kathy Kristof reports that departing Countrywide President David Sambol will be using the embattled mortgage lender's corporate jet to take his family on a three-week vacation in Africa, according to a source close to the company.

Sambol, who was among those axed by new parent Bank of America, wouldn't confirm or deny the trip. Sambol_5 He tells Kristof:

"This is a personal matter involving my family and I would like to protect my privacy," Sambol said, adding that "everything I am doing is in connection with my agreements with the company."

When BofA's purchase of Countrywide was first announced, it looked like Sambol, 48, would be staying on as head of the mortgage division -- effectively taking over for Angelo Mozilo, Countrywide's founder and CEO. But then BofA revoked the decision before the deal was completed this summer.

Sambol, who earned $10.3 million last year, will be getting a $28-million severance package, plus a host of fringe benefits, including access to the company jet for both business and personal travel as long as he is employed, Kristof reports. He is leaving the company shortly.

BofA had no comment.

-- Annette Haddad

Photo credit: Countrywide

Questions? Comments? E-mail: annette.haddad@latimes.com

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