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“The defendant voiced only a suspicion of corruption which he, immediately and in clear terms, admitted was without factual foundation or insufficient for him to be able to say that anyone had done anything wrong,” said the judge in a 15-page decision.
“In my opinion, he clearly and explicitly prevented any defamatory meaning being perceived in his suspicion of corruption.”
In a brief statement issued by the mayor’s office, Ford said he welcomed the court decision.
“I will continue fighting to represent the best interests of Toronto taxpayers at City Hall. There is still a lot of work to be done and I will continue to focus on this,” Ford said in an email sent on his behalf by press secretary George Christopoulos.
Foulidis, who had his lease extended on public land in an untendered contract for 20 years, sued Ford, claiming the mayor suggested the leasing between his company, Tuggs Inc., and the city was corrupt.