Toronto Police continued attempts to seize cellphones and a computer late last year in an investigation related to Mayor Rob Ford and his friend Alessandro (Sandro) Lisi.
The Globe and Mail has learned that police applied for search warrants on Nov. 29, 2013, for seven cellphones and one computer from Project Traveller, a drug-and-gang investigation that centred on an Etobicoke housing complex. Project Traveller led to a subsequent investigation of the mayor and Mr. Lisi – dubbed Project Brazen 2 – and an extortion charge against Mr. Lisi involving a video alleged to show Mr. Ford smoking crack cocaine.
The November warrant applications were listed in a document provided to Peter Jacobsen, a lawyer for The Globe and Mail who is fighting in court along with other media to have details of those applications made public.
In addition to the November requests, the list also shows that in October, police sought search warrants for Mr. Lisi's Range Rover and home as well as his iPhone. And later in the month, police sought an "assistance order" from Apple Inc.
Police have already released a separate document on Project Brazen, an Information to Obtain, a compilation of evidence police present to a judge to request search warrants. The document of nearly 500 pages was dated Oct. 2, 2013, almost a month before Mr. Lisi, who is accused of drug dealing, was charged with extortion. The day he was charged, Oct. 31, 2013, Chief Bill Blair said that police had found the alleged crack video.
The ITO document was comprised mostly of details of Mr. Lisi's alleged drug activity. Mr. Jacobsen said he hopes the later warrants contain information on the extortion charge.
Mr. Jacobsen also said he hopes "this provides us with better insight into what police have been doing, and may also provide some further insight into the nature into the investigation of Mayor Ford."
The list of 27 warrant applications also includes phone record requests – from Bell, Rogers, Telus and Wind – for as recently as Jan. 14.
Lawyers are due back in court on March 5 to try to make the warrant applications public.