December 1, 2005

Ex-Hollinger chief Conrad Black pleads not guilty

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Toppled media tycoon Conrad Black
pleaded not guilty on Thursday to U.S. charges he defrauded
shareholders of newspaper publisher Hollinger International
Inc. by siphoning $84 million in fees from asset sales and by
misusing company perks.

U.S. District Judge Amy St. Eve accepted the 61-year-old
Black's not guilty plea to eight fraud charges.

If convicted Black, who resigned under pressure as
Hollinger's chief executive in 2003, could face up to 40 years
in prison and owe millions of dollars in fines and restitution.
He also faces several civil suits demanding hundreds of
millions of dollars.