Some of the payments at the center of Conrad Black’s criminal fraud trial were reported to U.S. government regulators in a timely fashion and not hidden as prosecutors have suggested, jurors were told on Thursday.
Under cross examination, Fred Creasey, a former comptroller at Black’s Canadian holding company Hollinger Inc., was shown a document bearing his name by defense lawyer Patrick Tuite.
Creasey had testified on Wednesday that some of the money paid to Black and his associates from newspaper property sales in 2000 did not show up in regulatory filings that Hollinger’s U.S. subsidiary, Chicago-based Hollinger International, had made until May 2001.
But the document Creasey was given on Thursday had been filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in December 2000, two weeks after a major deal involving the sale of some of Black’s newspapers.
Creasey said he could not remember the document. Tuite suggested that Creasey was trying to “mislead the jury”, but he was cut off after objections from prosecutors. U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald’s office is running the prosecution.