Theatre mogul Garth Drabinsky's bid to be freed on bail has been denied by the Court of Appeal for Ontario.

Drabinsky had requested release pending a decision by the Supreme Court of Canada on whether to grant him leave to appeal his 2009 fraud convictions.

On Sept. 13, the Ontario high court denied Drabinsky's appeal of his convictions, and of those of his business partner, Myron Gottlieb.

However, their sentences were reduced by two years, meaning that Drabinsky would serve five years, and Gottlieb, four.

Justice J.A. Doherty based his decision on the grounds that release would interrupt Drabinsky’s serving of his sentence.

"Where an accused is convicted of a serious crime and sentenced to a significant jail term, public confidence in the effective operation of the justice system must suffer if years go by before the accused serves that sentence," he said.


On Sept. 13, Livent co-founder Myron Gottlieb had his sentence reduced to four years. (Chris Young/Canadian Press)

Drabinsky and Gottlieb, who produced such 1990's theatre hits as Phantom of the Opera, Showboat and Ragtime through their company, Livent Inc., were convicted in March 2009 on two counts of defrauding investors by manipulating financial statements.

They were also each convicted on one count of forgery, but those charges were subsequently stayed.

Livent went out of business in 1998.