Police describe Toronto mayor crack tape

AP News
Posted: Mar 19, 2014 12:48 PM

TORONTO (AP) — A judge released court documents Wednesday that include a description of a video where Mayor Rob Ford is seen smoking what appears to be crack cocaine.

Ford, who is seeking re-election despite the drug scandal engulfing him, acknowledged last year that he smoked crack in a "drunken stupor" after police said they obtained the video. News reports of the crack video's existence first surfaced in May, but it has not been released publicly.

"Mayor Ford is holding what appears to be a glass cylinder in one hand and a lighter in the other hand while engaged in conversation with individual(s) off camera," the documents state.

"At one point Mayor Ford holds the glass cylinder to his mouth. Lights the lighter and applies the flame to the tip of the glass cylinder in a circular motion. After several seconds Mayor Ford appears to inhale."

The video appears to have been filmed surreptitiously showing Ford "consuming what appears to be a narcotic while inside a residence," according to the documents.

Ford inhales before he notices a recording device then "briefly points at the camera and asks if it's on," the documents state.

The mayor of Canada's largest city has rebuffed pressure to resign since admitting to smoking crack. The Toronto City Council stripped him of most of his powers in an effort to isolate him, but it lacked the authority to force him out.

Ford is not facing charges but police said the investigation continues.

Justice Ian Nordheimer ruled the documents should be unsealed after lawyers representing several media organizations argued for the release.

The documents also note that meetings between Ford and his friend and former driver, Alexander Lisi, are "indicative to that of drug trafficking" and that the two have been in constant contact during the investigation. Lisi is facing extortion charges over attempts to retrieve the video from an alleged gang member.

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Police also describe how alleged gang member Mohamed Siad boasts about catching the "mayor smoking crack" in a video. Police allege the video was recorded on Feb. 17, 2013, at 7:57 PM.

Five videos in total were found on the computer of Siad, police say in the court documents. Police believe Siad, one of dozens of people charged in a separate weapons and gang investigation, was trying to sell the crack video. The documents say the first four videos were failed attempts to video Ford.

Ford brushed by reporters Wednesday and declined to answer questions.

Olivia Chow, who is running to replace Ford in the October election, said the ongoing revelations about Ford show "why he is no role model for our children. Our city is tired of the distractions and needs a new mayor."