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Following the convictions, he was tight-lipped about what they meant for his political future -- he had not yet announced whether he would seek another mayoral term in municipal elections in October -- but days later announced he would step down. In a statement issued Monday, Fontana announced he would re and would hold a news conference Thursday, but he cancelled that appearance via another statement Thursday morning.
Fontana's official reation was delivered to the city clerk and he will now focus on his family, the statement indicated.
This was not how Fontana envisioned his final days in office, but he accepts the challenges before him, he added. Fontana's political life spanned more than 30 years, first as a municipal politician, then as a Liberal member of Parliament, ultimately returning to London as mayor. He was born in Italy but his family moved a few years later to Timmins, Ont. Fontana left Timmins to study chemical engineering at the University of Waterloo, but he only spent a year at the school. He and about six friends travelled as musicians -- Fontana is a drummer -- for about a year, then he went to the University of Western Ontario, Fontana told the officer.
After graduating he stayed in London, working for Firestone, then London Life, and in he started an insurance business and was elected as a municipal councillor. Fontana was elected in as a Liberal member of Parliament and served as minister of housing and labour from to He left federal politics for an unsuccessful bid to become London mayor inbut won the job in the election.
Sentencing arguments in his criminal case are scheduled for July 15 and the penalties range from an absolute discharge to time in custody. When he was a Liberal MP, Fontana forged a contract from his son's wedding to make it look as though it was for a political event at the same venue, Superior Court Judge Bruce Thomas found last week.
Fontana admitted making seven changes -- including whiting out his wife's ature, replacing it with his own and writing the word original in quotation marks at the top -- to an existing contract with the Marconi Club for his son's wedding to reflect an event he planned for then-finance minister Ralph Goodale at the same venue.
Since he had only spoken with the club's president -- a friend of more than 40 years -- over the phone and didn't have any paperwork, Fontana changed several details on the wedding contract from a few months prior and submitted it, he testified. The judge said he did not believe Fontana's story, saying the evidence pointed to Texting friend Fontana date cheque being mistakenly sent to the venue. Fontana intended for it to go directly to him, Thomas found.
If the Texting friend Fontana date had indeed gone to Fontana, no one would have been the wiser, the judge said. We welcome your comments. Bell Media reviews every comment submitted, and reserves the right to approve comments and edit for brevity and clarity.
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