LAWFUEL – Law News Wire – Prosecutors are expected to call their final two witnesses in Conrad Black’s fraud trial today, setting the stage for the defence to question witnesses such as one-time National Post editor-in-chief Ken Whyte as soon as tomorrow, the Toronto Star reports.
Ed Genson, one of Black’s lawyers, said that along with Whyte, other prospective witnesses include Joan Maida, Black’s long-time executive assistant.
Prosecutors have tried to block two other defence witnesses from testifying. One is a Buffalo-based lawyer, with no direct connection to the case, who would testify about how long it might take for star prosecution witness David Radler to be transferred to a Canadian prison once he’s sentenced.
They also want to prevent a witness named Alex Borelli from testifying because he has spent time in the courtroom observing the trial.
Judge Amy St. Eve said she would allow testimony from the final two government witnesses today – one is an Internal Revenue Service agent, the other works for the FBI – before the defence opens its case.
Black is accused, along with three other Hollinger executives, of bilking U.S.-based Hollinger International out of $84 million (U.S.), mainly by selling hundreds of newspapers across the United States and Canada and receiving “non-compete payments” – a pledge that Hollinger would not compete against the buyers.