Finally, the trial of former media mogul Conrad Black is winding down. Is the man a liar, as prosecutor Julie Ruder said today? Or is he an overpaid executive who treated his company like a personal fiefdom but legally didn’t stray over the line?
Despite all the stories of excess, there are a lot of rumblings that Black could get off. Certainly, he has been the picture of confidence throughout the trial and has privately spoken with Canadian media types I know about crushing Radler, his former deputy, in court. Journalists like Susan Chandler of The Chicago Tribune are already contemplating what life will be like if Black is found innocent and returns to the world of media.
The trials of other high-living executives like former HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy show that leaders can be acquitted of wrongdoing, even when people on their team declare themselves—and their boss—to be guilty. Stay tuned.
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