updated 11/15/2004 12:02:11 PM ET 2004-11-15T17:02:11

The Securities and Exchange Commission has filed a lawsuit against Conrad Black, the ousted CEO of Hollinger International Inc., and his top deputy David Radler, accusing the men of improperly diverting funds from the newspaper publisher over a period of four years, the SEC announced on Monday.

The SEC said in a statement that Black and Radler engaged in a “fraudulent and deceptive scheme” to take cash and other assets from Hollinger International from 1999 to 2003 and concealed their actions from the company’s public shareholders.

In its suit, the SEC is seeking civil penalties against Black, Radler and a Canadian-based company that Black controls, the “disgorgement” or repayment of gains they received in the transactions, and an order to bar the two men from serving as officers or directors of public companies.

Black has been removed as chairman and CEO of Hollinger International after an internal investigation found that he and his associates schemed to siphon away millions of dollars in company funds. However, he remains the company’s controlling shareholder.The Securities and Exchange Commission files fraud charges against Canadian-born newspaper baron Conrad Black and his former deputy at Hollinger International Inc.

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