bill blair

Toronto police say they have alleged crack video

Toronto police chief Bill Blair says forensic investigators have recovered a film "consistent with a video previously described in the media." The chief refused to describe the video in any depth, but when pushed by reporters he revealed that Mayor Rob Ford appears in the digital file currently in the possession of the Toronto police.

The file had been deleted and was recovered from a hard drive collected during Operation Traveller raids. Blair also referred to a second tape, "somewhat relevant in this case," though its contents are presently unknown.

Blair initially refused to name Rob Ford, saying only the recovered file was "consistent with what was reported in the media." That would seem to include homophobic remarks Ford was reported to have made on camera.

"I think it's fair to say the mayor does appear in that video," he later added.

The chief was clear to state that there are no grounds to arrest or charge Ford based solely on what's depicted in the files, though evidence released earlier today could change that. Meanwhile, Sandro Lisi is now also charged with extortion.

"The accused made extortive efforts to retrieve a recording," a police news release says.

Blair said as a citizen he was "disappointed."

The mayor addressed reporters outside his office at city hall at 2:30 this afternoon. "I wish I could come out and defend myself but unfortunately I can't, it's before the courts."

"I have no reason to resign. I'm going to go back and return my phone calls, I'm going to be out doing what the people elected me to and that's save taxpayers money and run a great government," he said before being drowned out by shouts from reporters and a torrent of clicking shutters.

Ford then retreated back inside his Halloween-themed office and left City Hall via the parking garage.

More on the press conference here.

Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.


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