Conrad Black Faces 'For Sale' Sign at Florida Home

10 July 2007

CHICAGO: While the trial jury ponders whether to convict Lord Conrad Black for allegedly looting Hollinger International, the fallen media baron is contemplating the possible loss not only of his freedom but also his $35 million (425.6m; £17.3m) Florida mansion.

The US government is demanding the seizure of $69.8m in assets if Black and his three co-defendants are found guilty of racketeering and fraud - and the nine bedroom, seven bathroom shanty in exclusive Palm Beach is said to be high on the hitlist of assets that could be forfeited.

Black's lawyers, however, argue that such a move would be unfair because the house was bought in 1994 - before the alleged crimes began.

Defence counsel Marc Martin told the federal court in Chicago: "Palm Beach itself is not a proceed of any criminal offence. I don't want the court to think that we're agreeing Palm Beach should be in the mix."

Also up for grabs is the $8.55m already frozen by the government following the sale of Black's luxury New York apartment in 2005 and his wife's $2.6m diamond ring.

The jury is now in its third week of deliberation on the guilt or otherwise of Black and three former Hollinger executives (Jack Boultbee, Peter Atkinson and Mark Kipnis), all accused of siphoning $60m from the company - now known as Sun-Times Media Group.

A verdict is expected this week.

Data sourced from; additional content by WARC staff