A second alleged gang member who appeared in a notorious photo with Rob Ford is out on bail.
Ontario Justice of the Peace Carolyn Humeniuk released Monir Kasim, 20, a month and a half after police arrested him on drug, gang and weapons charges during mass raids conducted last month.
“We are so grateful,” said Mr. Kasim’s mother, Fathiya Abasheikh, as she gave a series of fist-pumps following the decision. “My son is a good guy. Tonight he will take a good shower, eat good food and I will hug him for a long, long time.”
She made good on the final promise when her mop-haired son emerged from court cells wearing a black shirt and goofy smirk. He refused to speak to reporters.
The raids were the culmination of a year-long investigation focused on the Dixon City Bloods, an alleged drug and gun-running street gang based in series on apartment towers along Dixon Road in Etobicoke – a locale that’s also been tangled up in drug-use allegations against the mayor.
The buildings are situated just a few hundred metres from the suburban bungalow that forms the backdrop of a photograph showing the mayor, Mr. Kasim, Muhammad Khattak and Anthony Smith that emerged with reports of an alleged video showing Mr. Ford smoking what appears to be crack cocaine.
A tipster informed the mayor’s office that the video was being held at the Dixon apartments, a source told the Globe and Mail.
Mr. Smith died in a downtown shooting on March 28. The other two young men, Mr. Khattak, who narrowly survived the shooting, and Mr. Kasim were swept up in the raids.
Mr. Khattak has since been released on bail. Mr. Kasim earned the same limited freedom on Tuesday.
The reasons for his bail, along with all evidence presented at the bail hearing, are protected under a publication ban.
His bail conditions restrict him to his father’s Mississauga home unless accompanied by his father or a designate. He’s also banned from using mobile devices, speaking with any of the 55 co-accused in Project Traveller, possessing drugs, holding weapons or venturing within 200 metres of the Dixon apartments.
The decision spares Mr. Kasim from incarceration for the period leading up to trial, which could last upwards of 18 months.
Over that time, his parents say they’ll be encouraging him to complete his GED.
“His dad will be having a very long talk with him,” Ms. Abasheikh said.