Former owner of British newspaper Daily Telegraph convicted on fraud charge
Fallen media baron Conrad Black\'s last battle with US prosecutors has ended with a US $4.1 million fine and a ban on him leading public companies, officials said Thursday
.Black returned to Canada last year after serving 37 months behind bars in the United States on fraud and obstruction of justice charges.
The fine announced on Thursday ends a long-running civil lawsuit which had been put on hold while his criminal case worked its way through the courts.
The settlement comes after he reached a deal with the US Securities and Exchange Commission last month. The agreement, which was approved by a judge on Tuesday, saves Black 2 million US dollars in fines previously assessed against him in October.
In exchange, Black agreed to drop his appeal and accept the allegations that he misled shareholders.
Black, who once owned Britain\'s biggest-selling quality newspaper, The Daily Telegraph, is set to face Canadian securities officials on Friday.
His legal battles began in 2004 when he was accused of siphoning off tens of millions of dollars from the sale of newspapers owned by Hollinger International, his holding company. Criminal charges were laid a year later.
Black, a prolific writer and historian in his own right, vehemently maintained his innocence and launched a series of libel lawsuits in Canada to strike back at the detractors he blames for destroying his once vast empire.
But years of legal battles -which went all the way up to the US Supreme Court -failed to fully clear his name, although he did manage to greatly reduce his prison time by clearing himself of many of the charges.
Montreal-born Black, 68, renounced his Canadian citizenship in 2001 after a spat with then prime minister Jean Chretien who protested the media owner\'s peerage to Britain\'s House of Lords.
At its peak Black\'s newspaper group was one of the largest media empires in the world, with revenues in the billions of dollars and global daily circulation in the millions.
As well as the Telegraph in London the group included the Chicago Sun-Times, Canada\'s National Post, and the Jerusalem Post.