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Federal appeals court rejects Black bid to remain free on bail pending appeal

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit on Thursday upheld a district court ruling [JURIST report] denying a bid by Canadian-born financier and former media mogul Conrad Black [CBC profile; JURIST news archive] to remain free on bail pending the appeal of his July conviction [JURIST report] on mail fraud and obstruction of justice charges. Black must report to a federal prison in Coleman, Florida on Monday. Black was sentenced to 78 months in prison [JURIST report] in December and ordered to pay $125,000 and forfeit another $1 million for his conviction. The appeals court Thursday ruled that Black's co-defendants - John Boultbee and Peter Atkinson - could remain free on bail because they had not been convicted of a separate obstruction of justice charge. CBC News has more.

The US government originally accused [indictment, PDF] Black of diverting more than $80 million from Hollinger International and its shareholders [JURIST report] during the company's $2.1 billion sale of several hundred Canadian newspapers, but in July 2007 he was found not guilty on separate charges of racketeering, wire fraud, and tax evasion. In August 2007, Black and former Hollinger executives Boultbee, Atkinson and Mark Kipnis filed concurrent motions [JURIST report] requesting either new trials or acquittals after their July convictions. US District Judge Amy St. Eve largely rejected the motions [ruling, PDF; JURIST report], overturning one of Kipnis' mail fraud convictions while affirming all of the other convictions against the four.

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