Hollinger International Inc., which publishes the Chicago Sun-Times and London’s Daily Telegraph, said it spent about $7 million in the second quarter on legal fees related to its investigation into payments to company executives.

Hollinger formed a committee of independent directors in June 2003 to study transactions involving payments to certain executives from company asset sales, the company said in a quarterly filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Chicago-based Hollinger won’t file its second-quarter earnings, scheduled for yesterday, with the SEC until the investigation is complete because of its ongoing dispute with Ravelston Corp., the holding company controlled by former Hollinger International Chief Executive Conrad Black, the company said in the filing. Hollinger sued Black in January, claiming he deceived directors and misappropriated $200 million.

Spokeswoman Molly Morse declined to comment beyond the content of the SEC filing. Hollinger International shares fell 47 cents, or 2.8 percent, to $16.26 in trading after the official close of U.S. markets. They rose 36 cents to $16.73 in New York Stock Exchange composite trading.

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