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AWOL on the airwaves: Rob Ford cancels radio show


 

TORONTO – Toronto Mayor Rob Ford decided against hosting his weekly radio show this weekend after explosive allegations that he was recorded on a video appearing to smoke crack cocaine.

CFRB program director Mike Bendixen has tweeted that Ford and his brother Doug, a city councillor, won’t be behind the microphones this Sunday for their two-hour talk show “The City” on the Toronto station.

Bendixen says the Ford brothers told the station on Friday the show would not go ahead as scheduled, but expected it would be back on the air next weekend.

Rob Ford has slammed a Toronto Star report on the video as a smear job and called it “ridiculous.”

The Toronto Star and the U.S.-based website Gawker.com reported the story Thursday night. Two reporters from the Star and the editor of Gawker said they viewed the cellphone video and said it appears to show Ford smoking crack.

The media outlets reported the video was shown to them by an alleged drug dealer who has been reportedly trying to sell the video for at least $100,000.

Gawker is trying to raise $200,000 from the public, which it says it needs in order to buy the video to post on the gossip-news site. By Saturday afternoon it had raised more than $52,000 toward its goal.

In its report, the Star said two of its reporters had watched the video on May 3 that it said showed an intoxicated Ford in a room, sitting in a chair, and lighting and smoking from what appeared to be a glass crack pipe.

The publications reported Ford could be heard making crude remarks about Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and the high school football team the mayor coaches.

The Star has stood by its story and rejected any suggestions the paper was out to get the mayor.

Another member of council, Josh Matlow, said although the fact the mayor cancelled his radio show is not that important, he must give a more full explanation than he has so far.

”The reality is this is an international uproar and it has hurt Toronto’s reputation,” Matlow said in a phone interview.

”We need to hear the mayor’s response, he should offer more than a one word answer.”

Regardless of whether there is a video of Ford and whether it ever surfaces, the mayor would be unwise to remain silent on the matter, Matlow suggested.

”If he chooses not to then I think speculation will only increase and the harm to our city’s reputation internationally will get worse.”

Vancouver radio station CKNW reported on its website that the mayor’s brother was planning to respond to the allegations on Tuesday.

Doug Ford was quoted by the radio station saying he had “never seen my brother around crack cocaine – ever, in my entire life.”

Rob Ford’s lawyer Dennis Morris has called the media reports “false and defamatory.” Morris also told the newspaper it was impossible to tell what a person was smoking by watching the video.

Toronto police spokesman Mark Pugash said Friday investigators were “monitoring the situation closely.”

Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version wrongly said there was a report that the mayor was to respond to the allegations on Tuesday. In fact it’s the mayor’s brother


 
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AWOL on the airwaves: Rob Ford cancels radio show

  1. How unfortunate that “Rob and Doug” won’t be on the air tomorrow. I intended to not only listen, for the very first time, but call in with a question.

    I would like to know “why” Rob Ford retained the services of “criminal lawyer” Dennis Morris, instead of contacting Alan J.Lenczner, Q.C. who handled his conflict of interest case, rather successfully, I might add. If The Star and Gawker are defaming (slandering) and harassing him, wouldn’t a civil litigator have been the “obvious” choice? And before anyone ‘opines’ that Lenczner may not have been available, http://www.litigate.com/bios.aspx there are 46 other lawyers at Lenczner’s firm that are more than capable of making a press release on Fords behalf.

      • I’m married to a lawyer, so bare with me. Think of the O.J Simpson case for a minute – O.J was found not guilty in a criminal court of law, but guilty in a civil trial.

        Yes, criminal libel/defamation is a charge that *could* be brought against the reporters, *if* it is found that the video does not exist and they fabricated the entire story. The police are *generally* the only ones capable of laying criminal charges in Canada. However, there is a provision under Canadian law that allows for private prosecution, but you must be able to convince the Crown Attorney of the facts.

        http://www.attorneygeneral.jus.gov.on.ca/english/private_prosecution.asp

        Rob Ford would *not* need the services of a “criminal lawyer” in this scenario, as he would not be the one being accused.

        Again, I am still curious as to why Ford didn’t retain the services of Lenczner and his firm. And why he felt he needed the services of a criminal lawyer.

        • Retaining a criminal lawyer would serve both purposes of defending against potential charges of drug use by Ford, and exploring the ramifications of what could be in store for the reporters by the cops.

          A criminal lawyer would be in a better position to assist the police and crown counsel in the latter endeavour; something that would give Rob Ford great glee, in going after his perpetual ankle-biter Toronto Star.

          • Not even close dannyR. But I won’t bore you by explaining how the legal system actually works.

    • I’ve listened to the show a few times and I doubt they would have permitted your question. The Ford brothers use the show as a platform to ‘bash and bully’ all those who disagreed with them the previous week. I’m surprised The Star hasn’t sued both Rob and Doug for the disparaging remarks they have made against the paper and its reporters.

  2. Cancelling the radio show makes no sense. An innocent man would want every opportunity possible to deny the charges if they were truly “ridiculous…” Putting the blame on those who have pulled the curtain back to reveal the Wizard has finally hit the a PR spin out-of-control wall.

    • Perhaps he’s just freaking exhausted from all these idiotic accusations he has to endure from an idiotic public.

      • That’s no excuse.

      • His idiotic lawyer could have issued a blanket denial, e.g.

            “There’s lots of ways vindictive and resourceful opponents can fake someone being in a video.”

        No, Morris has implicitly let it slip that the reporters’ testimony is credible, but there’s no way of telling from a video that Ford’s crack pipe contains crack.

        • I’d like to see anyone smoke tobacco, or even weed in a crack pipe. They’re made to freebase substances that liquidate and vaporize, not burn.

          • It’s just my way of saying Morris is being a dolt foolish lawyer. Now he has to show you can smoke anything in a crack pipe, eg., just hold the flame farther away, so the heating is more slow and gentle. But I’m not into drugs, so Mr. Ford will have to demonstrate to the press for himself how it can be done.

          • Wasn’t disagreeing, just tossing in my 5 cents. In fact, I totally agree. ford’s lawyer is not using the best defense. Should have gone with a look-a-like in makeup, or something.

  3. Sad for Toronto and has to be a turning point in this constant struggle we have had since Ford was elected. Both those who voted for Ford and those who did not are sick of this. Ford has got to be seriously considering stepping down at this point.

  4. If I was the mayor, I’d respond with the civil libel notice.

  5. “Morris also told the newspaper it was impossible to tell what a person was smoking by watching the video.”

    Morris has uncharacteristically, for a lawyer, let more than he has to out of the bag. Implicit in the statement is the concession that the person in the claimed video is Rob Ford. It is “false and defamatory” that Rob Ford is smoking crack. Not false and defamatory that Rob Ford is smoking something. He just likes smoking hash oil or something in a crack pipe. To each his own.

    • If ford wants to argue he was smoking cannabis oil in the pipe, I’ll even defend him for it, but if it’s a hard drug (the kind you smoke in a crack pipe), he’s on his own.

  6. I predict that if they’d gone ahead with the show that Rob would have gotten someone calling in to ask where he could score a few rocks. So its just as well that they decided to cancel.

  7. Maybe they just wanted the long weekend off.

    • ROFL!
      They cancelled days before the show, not weeks or months.

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