Thursday, June 21, 2007

Black defense rests case

Former Hollinger International CEO Conrad Black's defense team rested its case Wednesday:

There's no scheme here," Black's lawyer Edward Genson told the jury as he tried to debunk the government's claim that the fallen media mogul masterminded a plan to loot $60 million from investors in his newspaper empire Hollinger International.

Black, who shifted to a seat more directly facing the largely blue-collar jury this week, turned several times to smile at his wife and three 20-something children who sat in the front row in the public gallery.

Genson told the jury that Black deserved the lavish perks he received from Hollinger International - including a deal on a pricey Park Avenue apartment that is part of one of the charges against him - because the company used him "as a logo" and as "a brand name" to score financing and to build a presence in New York.

Hollinger International's American subsidiary, American Publishing, owned The Carthage Press and the Neosho Daily News in the 1990s.

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