’Was Paris Hilton on the Hollinger Audit Committee?’

[Posted 7:02 AM by Roger Kimball]

So asks Mark Steyn in his continuing coverage of the trail of Conrad Black.

As many of our readers will know, Conrad Black, the former owner of The Daily Telegraph,The Sunday Telegraph, and The Spectator (among other media properties), is on trial in Chicago for . . . well, it’s complicated, but it involves securities law and whether Lord Black bamboozled the audit committee of his company, Hollinger International. Thus far, the trial has been largely an exercise in farce, and would indeed be funny were not Lord Black facing something like 100 (or was it 1000?) years in prison. Among the star witnesses thus far have been zillionaire Marie-Josée Kravis and former Governor James R. Thompson, both of whom were Hollinger board members and both of whom signed at least eleven documents authorizing activity that they now say they have just . . . can’t . . . remember. Anyway, Patrick Fitzgerald, having disposed of Scooter Libby for--what was it Libby was supposed to have done?--anyway, having secured Libby’s conviction, he’s on to Conrad Black.

Enter Paris Hilton, hotel-fortune heiress who is perhaps best known as co-star of an, er, intimate video made by a (former) boyfriend and widely distributed on the internet. A few days ago, Ms. Hilton was sentenced to 45 days in the cooler for driving without a license. Mark Steyn draws our attention to some noteworthy similarities between Ms. Hilton’s testimony and the testimony of Jim Thompson and Marie-Josée Kravis:

Paris Hilton, a celebrated documentary maker, is in trouble for driving without a valid license. As The New York Post reports :
The hotel heiress was sentenced to 45 days in jail yesterday after a judge rejected her plea of ignorance that she didn’t know she had been driving with a suspended license months following a bust for drunken driving.

The blond bubblehead broke down in tears when she heard the judge’s ruling, and laid her head down on the defendant’s table as the courtroom erupted in pandemonium.

‘I don’t understand. I did what they told me,’ she sobbed as her mother and father surged forth to console her.

Indeed. Now who does that sound like? Substitute “Governor James Thompson, Ambassador and Mrs Kravis” for “Paris Hilton”, and replace “her mother and father” with “federal prosecutors surged forth to console her”, and you could also be in the 12th floor courtroom in Chicago.
Read the whole thing here: you’ll be glad you did.

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