Judge Rejects Black's Last Effort to Avoid Jail Time

Fallen media titan faces sentencing in weeks
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 7, 2007 9:21 AM CST
Conrad Black faces sentencing at the end of the month.   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Conrad Black has exhausted his last legal option to avoid a lengthy jail sentence, says the Times of London, after the presiding judge dismissed a motion to have his fraud conviction overturned. In a 39-page decision, a judge rejected claims that an unreliable witness had prejudiced the decision against the disgraced media baron. Prosecutors are now seeking a 19 to 24 years at sentencing later this month.

Black remains free on $21 million bail. He was convicted in July of obstruction of justice and three counts of mail fraud, although a juror recently told Canadian television that he only narrowly avoided guilty verdicts on other counts. The presiding judge has forbidden Black to return to Canada, his native country to which he gave up citizenship upon taking a seat in the British House of Lords.