CHICAGO, April 17 (UPI) -- A war of words broke out in the Conrad Black fraud trial in Chicago as defense lawyers charged a prosecutor with "intentionally misleading" questioning.
The accusations got so heated that U.S. District Judge Amy St. Eve called the lawyers into her chambers to calm things down, The Toronto Star reported.
The finger pointing came during questioning Monday of former Hollinger International Inc. lawyer William Rogers about how Hollinger handled the disclosure of non-compete payments made to Black and his co-defendants in 2000.
The payments were intended to guarantee Black's company would not re-enter a media market it was leaving.
Black, Peter Atkinson, Jack Boultbee and David Radler are accused of taking millions of dollars in non-compete payments the prosecution says should have gone to their company.
Black, Atkinson and Boultbee have denied the charges. Radler has pleaded guilty and is cooperating with the government.
Rogers testified he thought it was critical Hollinger amend its annual report to show Black and the others had personally received cash payments. Instead, Hollinger disclosed the payments in a routine quarterly filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
Black is charged with fraud, racketeering, money laundering and obstruction of justice.