Saturday July 14, 2012

By Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator, Saturday July 14, 2012

Conrad Black asks for a say in Order of Canada hearing

Almost a year after Conrad Black learned that he could lose his Order of Canada, the former media baron has gone to court to force theÊcouncil reviewing his membership to hear him in person.

His membership in the order is in jeopardy because he had to serve a 42-month prison sentence in the United States for fraud andÊobstruction of justice.

In an application his lawyers filed Monday in Federal Court, Mr. Black said his case is too complex to be argued only through writtenÊarguments.

He asked for an oral hearing before the Advisory Council of the Order, the 11-person panel which governs membership to the countryÕsÊhighest civilian honour.

ÒThe facts relating to the issue of terminating the applicantÕs appointment to the Order of Canada are complex and lengthy and cannot beÊappropriately dealt with in written submissions only,Ó the application said.

ÒMoreover, given that the relevant facts will engage issues of credibility and prompt questions from the Advisory Council, the principlesÊof fairness make an oral hearing necessary.Ó

The court filing reveals that Mr. Black was first notified that the council was considering terminating his honour in a July 20, 2011, letter.Ê(Source: Globe & Mail)

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