Conrad Black Freed From Prison, Facing U.S. Deportation

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The shamed Canadian media mogul is expected to be flown by American immigration officials to Britain, despite a wish to return to Toronto.

TORONTO – Freed from a U.S. jail Friday, fallen Canadian media baron Conrad Black is headed back to Canada.

But Canadians, while tracking the whereabouts of former Florida prisoner No. 18330-424 in the local media, have no idea when Black will arrive back in Toronto.

That’s because the former press tycoon is now in the hands of U.S. immigration officials after serving most of his 42 months prison sentence for fraud and obstruction of justice related to his management of Hollinger International Inc., his one-time global media empire.

The Canadian media has been abuzz with comment after Ottawa granted Black a one-year temporary permit to live in Canada, despite the disgraced media magnate having in 2001 renounced his Canadian citizenship to take up a peerage in Britain.

His supporters claim Black has served his time in a U.S. jail and should be allowed to resume his life in Canada, while detractors claim Black was convicted south of the border of serious white collar crimes and should not be allowed to reclaim his Canadian citizenship.

U.S. immigration officials are expected to deport Black to Britain, or a British colony nearer to the U.S., because he retains a British passport.

Black told the Canadian government he wants to return to Toronto where he and his wife, Barbara Amiel, a Canadian citizen, have a home.