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Hollinger Inc Sues Black

News, 31 March 2005

These days it never rains but it pours on Lord Conrad Black.

The erstwhile media baron is facing further legal entanglements as Toronto-headquartered Hollinger Incorporated [H-Inc], a company in which he holds most of the shares, sues him for C$636 million ($524m, €405m, £279m).

H-Inc, the holding company that controls Chicago Sun-Times publisher Hollinger International, is pursuing its former ceo and his privately held company, Ravelston, for financial misconduct.

Black, who was forced out of the ceo role at H-Intl in 2003, and former henchman David Radler are currently subject to a criminal investigation by the US Attorney's Office in Chicago. They also face civil fraud charges filed by the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

These relate to $85 million of company funds allegedly diverted into their own pockets - a charge vigorously denied by both men who insist the payments were authorized by the H-Intl board.

The latest twist in this scandal-beset tale comes shortly after Canadian financial regulator, the Ontario Securities Commission stopped Black's attempt to buy the 22% of H-Inc he does not already own.

Ravelston spokesman James Badenhausen dismissed the latest lawsuit as a rehash of existing litigation adding: "We are confident that, as with those other suits, we will prevail in this case."

Data sourced from New York Times; additional content by WARC staff