CHICAGO: In what will likely prove a merely token penalty, a Chicago court on Wednesday imposed a fine of $7 million (€4.75m; £3.38m) plus a $6m restitution penalty on Ravelston Corporation - the private holding company used by disgraced media tycoon Lord Conrad Black to manipulate his complex web of business deals.

Toronto-based Ravelston, however, is currently in the throes of restructuring under Canada's equivalent to Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Which effectively means the US court will have to whistle for its money.

Says Ravelston's receiver Robert Kofman: The prospect of any money being paid on the fine or the restitution order I would say is highly remote."

It was via Ravelston that Black controlled another Canadian holding vehicle, Hollinger Inc, which in turn pulled the strings of Chicago-based publicly-listed company Hollinger International.

In July Black was convicted on four counts of criminal fraud and obstructing justice, and was due for sentencing today November 30. But his moment of truth is now postponed until December 10.

Data sourced from Wall Street Journal Online. additional content by WARC staff