Judge Says No To Conrad Black's Home Leave

06 August 2007

CHICAGO: Disgraced former media tycoon Lord Conrad Black, found guilty last month of fraud and obstructing justice, has been ordered by a US court to remain in the country while he awaits sentencing, scheduled for November.

Black wanted to return home to Toronto until his fate - up to 35 years in jail - is decided. But trial Judge Amy St Eve insisted he stay in Chicago or Florida under the constraints of his $21 million (€15.3m; £10.3m) bail bond.

The judge told His Lordhsip's lawyers she was concerned that if Canuck-born Black was allowed to go native he might start a lengthy fight against extradition to the US.

Meantime, Hollinger Inc, holding company of publisher Hollinger International which Black and a quartet of former associates swindled, has filed for bankruptcy protection.

The company states the move is aimed at giving Hollinger and its subsidiaries "an opportunity to facilitate a restructuring of their assets and affairs".

H-Inc is also tightening control over its main asset, a stake in the Sun-Times Media Group (the rebranded H-Intl) which publishes the Chicago Sun-Times newspaper among other newspapers.

It has turfed-out three board members at Sun-Times Media and replaced them with its own slate of six directors on an eleven-member board.

Data sourced from BBC Online and ctv.ca (Canada); additional content by WARC staff