08/09/2014 11:23 EDT | Updated 08/09/2014 11:59 EDT

VELD Fest Deaths: Toronto Councillor Mammoliti Retracts Blaming Promoters INK After Legal Threat


With a possible lawsuit on the horizon regarding comments he made earlier in the week concerning the VELD Music Festival, Toronto City Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti issued a retraction on Friday afternoon.

In his initial comments Mammoliti took aim at INK Entertainment and the company's CEO Charles Khabouth, stating "we revisit whether or not INK Entertainment should be getting approvals and permits ever again." INK Entertainment's lawyer James Zibarras issued a statement demanding a full retraction and apology or otherwise Mammoliti would possibly face legal action.

"Despite media reports, I have not been contacted by any representatives or members of INK Entertainment," Mammoliti said in his statement Friday, according to a tweet from Toronto Sun reporter Don Peat. "I would, however, like to retract my comment directed at INK Entertainment and Charles Khabouth in my previous statement. It was not my intent to name them as directly responsible or negligent parties relating to the very tragic deaths of 2 people. Based on previous comments made by the organizers claiming security at these events is always top notch, I felt a level of outrage at hearing 2 deaths and 13 hospitalizations occurring at the most recent EDM event.

"In retrospect I could have expanded on the comment in that statement to give a broader explanation that my reference to negligence was in relation to security, as my concern with EDM events is and always has been security and harm reduction," Mammoliti continued. He closed by offering "my sincerest condolences" to the two families of those who died, something he did not do in his initial statement earlier in the week.

The Toronto Star reports that two fellow city councillors mentioned in Mammoliti's earlier statement -- Mike Layton and Gord Perks -- did not threaten legal action and were thus not mentioned in Friday's statement.

Annie Truong-Le, 20, and Willard Amurao, 22, were the two people who died at the music festival last weekend.


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