Question

1. What conflicts of interest may have been involved in Black’s activities?
2. Were Black’s non-compete agreements and payments unethical and/or illegal?
3. What questions should have been asked by International’s directors?
4. If the boards of directors of his various companies approved these noncompete agreements, are the board members on the hook and Black off?
5. Black controlled key companies through multiple voting rights attached to less than a majority of shares. Was this illegal and/or unethical?
6. What risk management techniques would have prevented Black’s potential conflicts from becoming harmful?

On November 17, 2005, Conrad Black and three other executives1 of Hollinger International, Inc., were charged with eleven counts of fraud with regard to payments allegedly disguised as “non-compete fees,” or in one case a “management agreement break-up fee,” and the misuse of corporate perks. The payments were alleged to be a self-dealing “series of either secret or misleading transactions involving sales of a series of various newspaper publishing groups in the United States and Canada.” The sales involved several hundred newspapers, and the alleged misdirection of over $80 million of the proceeds.



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  • CreatedOctober 28, 2014
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