Hollinger announced court-approved settlements with Black, Radler

TORONTO – Hollinger Inc. says it has entered into court approved settlement agreements with Conrad Black and his wife, as well as with David Radler, resolving all claims against each other.

The announcement issued Friday by the litigation trustee for Holliger, which was created by Black as a holding company for his media interests, said the settlement agreements were approved “in their entirety” on Nov. 13 by the Ontario Superior Court of Justice.

It said the settlement involved claims against Radler, a former director and officer of Hollinger and his company, North American Newspapers Ltd., as well as claims asserted by Radler against the estate of Hollinger Inc.

Also resolved were claims involving Black, a former officer and director of Hollinger Inc., his wife, Barbara Amiel-Black, also a former director, and their companies — Conrad Black Capital Corp., Moffat Management Inc., Black-Amiel Management Inc., 1269940 Ontario Inc. and 2753421 Canada Limited.

Hollinger Inc. and its subsidiaries, Sugra Ltd. and 4322525 Canada Inc., are currently subject to proceedings in Canada under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act and in the United States under Chapter 15 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.

The company filed for court protection shortly after Black was convicted of wire fraud in the United States in 2007 in a case that, among other things, involved a complicated system of “non-competition” payments.

Black, and former business partners Peter Atkinson and John Boultbee, were found guilty of three counts of fraud each by a U.S. jury in 2007, and Black was also convicted of one count of obstruction of justice.

But the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals later tossed two of the three fraud convictions against the men after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that one of the laws used to convict had been too broadly applied.

As a result of the initial verdict, Black was sentenced to 42 months and fined $125,000, serving 37 months in a Florida prison. Boultbee was sentenced to time served, fined $500 and ordered to pay $15,000 in restitution to the Sun-Times Media Group. Atkinson was given time served and fined $3,000.

Radler reached a deal with U.S. prosecutors in return for testimony against his former colleagues. He pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud at U.S. District Court, and was sentenced to 29 months in jail and ordered to pay a fine of $250,000.