TORONTO, Feb. 14 (UPI) -- Conrad Black has filed an $850 million defamation suit against board members of Toronto-based Hollinger International for making him a "social leper."
Black claims in the suit filed in Ontario Superior Court that negative media coverage of accusations against him by Hollinger International board members have made him a "loathsome laughingstock," the Toronto Globe and Mail reported Saturday.
The suit claims that "false and malicious representations" about Black have caused him to be "pilloried and mocked mercilessly in the media throughout the world."
Beyond that, Black has been "spurned by and shunned by persons who had personally accepted his hospitality in London, New York and Palm Beach," the suit says.
The suit names the three members of the Hollinger International special board committee that has been investigating payments at the firm, Gordon Paris, Graham Savage and Raymond Seitz, and two members of the audit committee, James Thompson and Richard Burt.
In making spurious allegations against him about misappropriating company funds, the defendants knew the SEC, the U.S. Justice Department and the Ontario Securities Commission would be obliged to investigate, according to the suit.