Here we go again.
It’s a few days before the reported deadline, but the publication ban has been lifted on the infamous police documents about Sandro Lisi. As we’ve seen so, so, so, so, so many times before, there is much more to the Rob Ford crack scandal than we originally thought. The latest revelations—mostly from police wiretaps—include several new details, mostly surrounding threats of blackmail. Ford himself has yet to comment on the revelations, choosing instead to walk by reporters at city hall while laughing as questions were being hurled at him. A jovial attitude for a man who, just weeks ago, said he had nothing left to hide.
According to the text under the now-lifted black boxes, gang members from the Dixon Road neighbourhood might have tried blackmailing the mayor with the infamous video of him smoking from a glass pipe, along with alleged photographs of him with heroin and other illegal narcotics. The gang members supposedly boasted that they had a good deal of “dirt” on Ford.
The mayor’s name, but never his voice, was recorded on the wiretaps, and none of these revelations have been proven in court. There are several shocking moments, though, including the following:
1. The possibility that Ford was doing “heavy drugs” just before a public event
On April 20, 2013, police report that they intercepted a phone call at 12:54 a.m. in which an alleged gang member got a call from an unknown person telling him that he needs to go to 15 Windsor Drive—an address referred to as a “crack house” by police—because that’s where the mayor is, and he “wants some drugs.” Several hours later, one of the alleged gang members caught on the wiretap saying he has “so much pictures” of the mayor “doing the hezza” (an Australian slag term for heroin). Then, in a call recorded early the following morning, a man says he was at 15 Windsor Drive, and that “the mayor of the city, Rob Ford, was smoking his rocks today.” Five hours later, that very same mayor was at Colonel Samuel Smith Park participating a public cleanup event.
2. Ford’s stolen phone may have been returned in exchange for pot
April 20th was also the day that the mayor’s mobile phone went missing. The wiretap includes a conversation between two men discussing how Ford’s cell was stolen and how they planned to get it back. “The named parties were intercepted deliberating how to give back the phone to avoid any issues, but stated that they are not concerned about Ford calling the police because they have a picture of him ‘on the pipe,’” the documents say, going on to note that the phone was returned to a member of Ford’s inner circle for “1.5 of kush”—street slang for marijuana—and that the men involved were irked about being the targets of Sandro Lisi’s threats. “They were not pleased with the threats and indicated that they have a picture of Ford ‘on a pipe’ and therefore will not tolerate his threats,” the police documents say. One man advises “that they love and respect Rob Ford but they have Rob Ford on a lot of fucked-up situations and they don’t wanna say anything.”
3. Rob Ford may have have offered $5,000 and car to buy the crack video
On March 27, 2013, the wiretap caught two men discussing an alleged offer—believed to be from Rob Ford—to buy a video of the mayor smoking crack from a glass pipe. The offer: five grand and a car. The men were underwhelmed with this offer, it would seem. One of them can be heard saying he was going to counter with demands of “100 or 150″—which police think means $100,000 or $150,000. This is followed by the men squabbling over whether or not to sell the video to a media outlet.
4. The offer to pay off the blackmailers came before the mayor said he couldn’t comment on a video that “doesn’t exist”
March 27, 2013 comes before May 24, 2013—the day the mayor held an meticulously worded press conference during which he said that he “can’t comment on a video that I have never seen or does not exist.”
5. David Price thought Anthony Smith’s murder was related to Ford—but the police disagreed
The police documents discount the theory that the crack video was somehow a motive in the shooting death of Antony Smith—the man that appeared with Ford in a photo outside 15 Windsor Drive, and then was subsequently killed in Toronto’s Entertainment District in March. The cops think the murder was in retaliation for a robbery, not anything to do with mayor Ford. David Price, a staffer in the mayor’s office when the crack story originally broke, disagrees. The documents indicate that “Price disclosed that the cell phone containing the recording of interest belonged to the deceased [Anthony Smith] and that it was the motive for his murder…Price stated that [Smith] died because of the phone.”
6. David Price may have told Doug Ford information about the crack video
The morning the crack video story broke in May, David Price got an anonymous call telling him the name, address and phone number of the person trying to sell the video—and the possible location of the video itself (an apartment on the 17th floor of 320 Dixon Rd.). Price told Ford’s chief of staff at the time, Mark Towhey, about the call, and Towhey told him to tell the mayor. Instead, Price told the mayor’s brother, Doug Ford. Price also told the police that the Ford brothers were not on speaking terms at that time. It’s unclear what Doug may have done with the information Price supplied.
7. Gang members may have kidnapped Mohamed Siad
On May 29th, two gang members were taped discussing a “kidnapping.” After this, Mohamed Siad—the Dixon gang member who tried to sell the crack video to Gawker and the Toronto Star—was kidnapped for just an hour as the men questioned him about the video. “Siad was crying, saying he destroyed the video and his family is in trouble,” according to the documents. One of the men told Siad that if he “saw him in Dixon he would kill him.” Two weeks later, all of the men discussing Ford, the video and the missing phone were arrested in massive Project Traveller sweep. They were all charged with gun and drug offences.