“Honest Services” Provision in the United States & Conrad Black
Former Canadian press mogul Conrad Black won an important legal victory when the United States Supreme Court vacated an 2007 appeals court decision that he defrauded Hollinger International Inc. The American high court found loopholes in the “honest services” provision used to prosecute Conrad Black on charges of mail fraud. His case has been remanded to a Chicago appeals court for reconsideration.
In Conrad Black’s case, the court found that instructions to the jury of his 2007 trial rested on improper construction of a section in federal fraud law which makes it illegal “to deprive another of the intangible right of honest services.” The Criminal Code provision was critical in convicting Black on three counts of fraud, whereby he arranged over $6 million to himself and associates from Hollinger International, when he served as the company’s chairman and CEO. The Supreme Court expressed in a footnote to the decision that the fraud scheme alleged at Black’s trial did not involve kickbacks or bribes.
Edward Prutschi was an expert legal guest on NewsTalk1010 about the U.S. “honest services” provisions in the context of Conrad Black’s appeal to the Supreme Court of the United States. Mr. Prutschi discusses the appeal and delves into the inner-workings of the verdict and reveals important details. Click on the above link to hear Mr. Prutschi’s special guest appearance.
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