Toronto mayor in hot water over paedophile comment

2013-12-13 11:26
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford attends a news conference. (Chris Young, AP)

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford attends a news conference. (Chris Young, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Toronto - A Toronto Star reporter has sued Mayor Rob Ford for suggesting the journalist was a paedophile in a recent television interview.

Ford appeared on a Vision TV interview with former media baron and convicted felon Conrad Black and accused Toronto Star reporter Daniel Dale of taking pictures of little kids. Ford said he didn't "want to say that word but you start thinking what this guy is all about".

The day after the interview aired, Ford told reporters that he stands by his words. "I stand by every word I said with Mr Black in my interview."

Ford's insinuation was related to an instance when Dale was close to the mayor's house in May 2012, investigating a plot of public land adjacent to Ford's home that the mayor wanted to buy.

Dale has said he was writing a story about the plot so he went to take a look at it when the mayor emerged from his home to confront him. Dale said the mayor's two children were nowhere in sight, nor were any children in sight.

'Freaked me out'

Dale said he decided to take action after Ford repeated the accusations on a Washington DC, sports radio show on Thursday, saying again that Dale was taking photos outside of his house.

Dale said Ford added this: "When you've got young kids, that freaked me right out."

"This isn't quite as egregious as the comment he made to Black, but it brought renewed attention to his malicious and defamatory insinuation to Black that I have some sort of predatory interest in young children, that I am a paedophile. I can't tolerate it. I won't tolerate it", wrote Dale in his article published late on Thursday.

Dale said the libel notice asks Ford to immediately retract the false insinuation that I am a paedophile and all of his false statements about my conduct on 2 May 2012. Dale said he is also suing Vision TV, which twice broadcast Ford's remarks to Conrad Black.

Dale asks that Ford and Vision owner ZoomerMedia apologise immediately "publicly, abjectly, unreservedly and completely".

"It had become clear to me that, if I had done nothing, the mayor would make his smears some sort of political talking point. His comments to Black were no one-time slip; they seemed to be the first shots in a bewildering campaign against my good name.

At a Tuesday news conference, he pointedly said he stands by every word. Today, he repeated many of his false claims on American radio", wrote Dale.

Ford and his brother, Councillor Doug Ford, have taken pointed shots at the media, calling journalists maggots.


Allegations about Ford smoking crack surfaced in May when two reporters for the Toronto Star and one from the US website Gawker said they saw a video of Ford appearing to smoke from a crack pipe, but they did not obtain a copy. Ford vilified the Star, accusing the paper of trying to take him down.

He admitted last month to smoking crack "in a drunken stupor".

Toronto Star editor Michael Cooke on Thursday told local broadcast TV station CP24 that the newspaper fully supports and backs Dale's lawsuit.

"[Ford] called Daniel Dale probably the worst thing you could call a man, that is a man who takes advantage of children and has sex with them. He called him a paedophile. That is a vicious, awful libel", said Cooke.

Read more on:    rob ford  |  us  |  canada  |  media

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.