Conrad Black‘s last-ditch attempt to be allowed to stay free while he appeals his conviction on fraud charges has been rejected. Three American judges who considered his last minute plea said the former newspaper tycoon had failed to raise any substantial issue which could affect the order for him to report to a prison on Monday.
He is due to report to a prison near his winter home in Palm Beach by 2pm to start his six and a half year sentence.
Black’s lawyer said that he was “surprised and disappointed ” by the judges’ decision .
How is his client? “As well as can be expected in the circumstances” he replied.
For the past few months Black has been staying at his American winter home with his wife Amelia. He has left the house rarely, usually just to take cycle rides and eat at local restaurants.
At one time Black was one of the most powerful press lords with an investment in more than 200 newspapers around the world including the Chicago Sun Times, the Jerusalem Post and the Daily Telegraph.
Although originally a Canadian citizen he is not eligible to serve his prison term in Canada because he renounced his original citizenship when he was offered a British peerage. After completing his sentence the US authorities could order his deportation to Britain.