Another interesting maneuvre by the creative British peer and former Canuck, Lord Conrad Black of Crossharbour, has been uncovered the special board investigative committee set up by Black's former fiefdom, Hollinger International [H-Intl].
According to a company mole, the committee alleges that over the period 1999-2001, Black and other Hollinger honchos bought some two dozen newspapers from their H-Intl at less than market value. These were then sold on -- some for as little as $1 -- to a pair of closely held companies, Horizon Publications and Bradford Publishing Company.
No prizes for guessing who controls Horizon. You got it in one -- the aforesaid Lord Black plus H-Intl's former chief operating officer F David Radler and other fortunate Hollinger executives. Black and Radler also held shares in Bradford.
H-Intl's board was told there were no other bidders for a number of these properties, some of which were allegedly losing money. [It is not known if the directors who approved the transactions asked for proof of these claims before green-lighting the deal.]
According to H-Intl insiders, the company is expected to include its latest findings as part of an amended lawsuit against Black, due to be filed this week with the US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
Data sourced from: The Wall Street Journal Online; additional content by WARC staff