Rob Ford sued in connection with jail assault
TORONTO - Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is being sued by his sister's ex-boyfriend, who alleges the mayor conspired to have him attacked in jail to prevent his illicit behaviours from becoming publicly known.
Scott MacIntyre alleges in the statement of claim filed Wednesday that the mayor arranged for jail staff to facilitate the beating. Video surveillance in the area had been "inexplicably disabled" before the attack and the guards stationed to watch the area didn't come to his aid, MacIntyre alleges.
As someone who formerly attended Ford family social events and gatherings, MacIntyre says he has known about Ford's "habits and lifestyle" for some time.
He was sent to jail in early 2012 after being charged with threatening the mayor, for saying he would expose his "unsavoury activities," MacIntyre says in his statement of claim.
It was there in March 2012 that he was brutally beaten, more than a year before the Toronto Star and U.S. website Gawker reported on the existence of a video appearing to show the mayor smoking crack cocaine.
"Ford's drug and alcohol abuse, and his association with criminals to facilitate his drug abuse...are long-standing," MacIntyre writes in his statement of claim.
"Ford was anxious that these matters should remain undiscovered."
None of the allegations have been proven in court.
"They're without fact or foundation," Ford's lawyer Dennis Morris said.
When questioned further if the mayor had conspired in any way to harm MacIntyre, Morris bluntly said "the answer is no."
Ford offered no comment when reporters asked him about the suit on Wednesday.
The mayor has admitted to consuming too much alcohol on occasion but has denied he has a problem. He has admitted to smoking crack cocaine, likely in a "drunken stupor" and to smoking marijuana. One of his friends, Alexander Lisi, is facing drug charges as well as an extortion charge for alleged attempts to retrieve the notorious crack video.
When MacIntyre pleaded guilty to the threatening charge the judge "correctly inferred that the plaintiff was attacked because he had been a bother to Ford and his family," he says in his statement of claim.
MacIntyre alleges Ford conspired with Payman Aboodowleh, who coached high school football with Ford, to have one of their former players, who was also in jail at the time, attack him.
There is video published online of an "extremely agitated" Ford and Aboodowleh conspiring at Aboodowleh's house to have MacIntyre beaten or killed, MacIntyre alleges in his statement of claim.
A video emerged in November of Ford in a profanity-laced, rambling tirade in which he threatens to kill someone. Ford said he was drunk at the time and called the incident an embarrassing mistake, but he wouldn't name the target of his rage.
The lawsuit doesn't make it clear if MacIntyre is referring to that video.
Ford and Aboodowleh arranged for staff members at the Metro West Detention Centre to "facilitate the exposure" of MacIntyre to the former football player, and to ensure "there was no supervision or surveillance of the area where the plaintiff was assaulted," MacIntyre alleges.
The former player, Aedan Petros, was among various inmates who told MacIntyre to "keep his mouth shut," once he was sent to jail, MacIntyre alleges.
"He repeatedly threatened the plaintiff that he would suffer dire consequences if he did not remain quiet about the substance abuse and criminal activities of Ford and members of Ford's family," MacIntyre alleges.
MacIntyre was put in segregation for his own protection, but once he was released from that unit he was sent to the same general population range where Petros was being held, he alleges.
"There was no response or no adequate response to the plaintiff's justified concern for his safety," MacIntyre alleges.
The suit also names Ontario's Ministry of Correctional Services, which is responsible for the province's jails, Aboodowleh and Petros.
MacIntyre is seeking $1 million in damages from all of the defendants, plus $100,000 from each of them for aggravated, punitive and penal damages. He is also seeking another $100,000 from the ministry, who he alleges breached his charter right to life, liberty and security of the person.