TORONTO — Former media baron Conrad Black is seeking a pardon from President George W. Bush in a last-ditch effort to get out of jail early, the Globe and Mail reported on Thursday, citing sources familiar with the matter.
Black, a Canadian-born member of Britain's House of Lords, has been in prison since March, when he began serving a six-and-a-half-year sentence for defrauding shareholders of one-time newspaper publishing giant Hollinger International Inc.
Black's lawyers recently submitted legal bills to his former publishing company, some of which referred to work done in pursuit of a clemency plea, the Globe and Mail said.
Under the U.S. Constitution, the president can grant pardons and shorten sentences.
The push for clemency comes after a federal appeals court unanimously upheld Black's conviction this summer.
Black and three ex-colleagues were accused of swindling the company — once the world's third-largest publisher of English-language newspapers — out of $6.1 million by giving themselves illegal bonuses.
© Thomson Reuters 2008 All rights reserved