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Peter Atkinson, former vice president and general counsel for Hollinger International Inc., leaves the Dirksen Federal courthouse after being convicted in Chicago July 13, 2007. (STEPHEN J. CARRERA/REUTERS)
Peter Atkinson, former vice president and general counsel for Hollinger International Inc., leaves the Dirksen Federal courthouse after being convicted in Chicago July 13, 2007. (STEPHEN J. CARRERA/REUTERS)

Former Hollinger executive reaches settlement with OSC Add to ...

Former Hollinger Inc. executive Peter Atkinson has reached a settlement with the Ontario Securities Commission, promising not to serve as a director or officer of a public company for life.

Mr. Atkinson agreed to the settlement Monday to resolve a long-running OSC case. That case had been lingering since 2005 while the OSC awaited the outcome of criminal matters involving Mr. Atkinson and co-accused former Hollinger executives Conrad Black, David Radler and John Boultbee.

As part of the settlement, Mr. Atkinson agreed not to work as a registrant in the financial industry or as an employee or director of a registrant, and agreed he would not trade or acquire Hollinger shares in the future.

“This settlement makes clear that individuals who are convicted of securities-related fraud will not have the privilege of free access to the Ontario capital markets,” OSC enforcement director Tom Atkinson said in a statement Monday.

Peter Atkinson and other Hollinger executives were accused of fraud for receiving non-competition payments in connection with Hollinger’s sales of assets that prosecutors alleged were a way of improperly taking money out of the company.

They were convicted in U.S. criminal court in 2007, and Mr. Atkinson had his sentence reduced in 2011 to his time already served of 345 days and a fine of $3,000 after he was successful in appealing two of the three fraud charges from his original conviction.

Mr. Atkinson’s settlement terms are the same as terms agreed to by Mr. Radler in a settlement with the OSC last year. The OSC reactivated its case against Mr. Black, Mr. Atkinson and former chief financial officer John Boultbee in July. The OSC’s proceedings against Mr. Black and Mr. Boultbee are ongoing.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission barred Mr. Atkinson and other Hollinger executives from serving as directors or officers of companies in that country.

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