Supreme Court denies Conrad Black's bail request

The Supreme Court on Thursday turned down former media executive Conrad Black's request to be released from a Florida prison while he appeals his fraud conviction.

Black has served nearly 15 months of a 6 1/2-year prison term following his conviction in July 2007.

In early May, the high court agreed to hear an appeal from Black and two other former executives of the Hollinger International media company who were convicted of fraud in connection with payments of $5.5 million they received from a Hollinger subsidiary.

In an order released by the court, Justice John Paul Stevens denied Black's request for bail pending his appeal.

The Supreme Court probably won't hear arguments in the case until late this year and a decision is unlikely before late winter.

Black can still ask a federal trial judge for bail. The judge who presided over the trial has already said one of the men, John Boultbee, can be released on bond.

Hollinger once owned the Chicago Sun-Times, the Daily Telegraph of London, the Jerusalem Post and hundreds of community newspapers across the United States and Canada. All of Hollinger's big newspapers except the Sun-Times have now been sold and the company that emerged changed its name to Sun-Times Media Group.

Black, a member of the British House of Lords, is serving his sentence at the federal prison in Coleman, Fla.