Key recording in Rob Ford libel trial to be entered Friday
An audio recording that will be key to a $6-million libel trial involving Toronto Mayor Rob Ford will be entered into evidence on Friday.
Ford is being sued by local pub owner George Foulidis over comments made during the politician's 2010 mayoralty campaign about a deal between the city and the Foulidis family business, Tuggs, Inc.
At the time, the city had awarded an untendered 20-year lease extension for Tuggs to operate the Boardwalk Pub, which is located on city property along Woodbine Beach.
During the heated mayoralty campaign, Ford, then a city councillor, was critical of the deal, and Foulidis has said that Ford suggested his company won the deal as a result of illegal activity.
Foulidis told the court on Wednesday that Ford’s criticism has left him "humiliated" and feeling "like a criminal." He teared up at another point when talking about the effect that the affair has had on his family.
Key to the trial is a news report published in the Toronto Sun on Aug. 11, 2010, following Ford’s meeting with the paper’s editorial board.
That story paraphrased Ford as saying the city’s deal with Tuggs "smacks of civic corruption." Ford’s lawyer Gavin Tighe has argued his client did not utter those words in a direct quote.
An audio recording of that meeting was said to be missing on Tuesday, the first day of the trial, but has since been found by a former editor of the paper.
Key audio recording to be presented
The Sun on Tuesday published a partial transcript of the meeting. That transcript appears to corroborate an account by Ford’s lawyer that his client never directly said the Tuggs deal "smacks of civic corruption."
Foulidis's lawyer told CBC News the full transcript of the recording will be introduced on Friday before Ford takes the stand.
Tighe told the court Wednesday his client would not be available to take the stand on Thursday. Tighe would not say why, but Ford was coaching his high school football team during a game that got underway at 2 p.m. in the city’s east end.