It's a small world--and city

May 07, 1991

A judge delayed a motion to hear Carl Lewis' $61 million libel suit yesterday because she's a neighbor of one of the defendants, former track coach Charlie Francis.

"It's unfortunate that in a city so large as Toronto that we'd have to select a judge so close to Mr. Francis," Justice Lorraine Gotlib said in dismissing herself from hearing the motion.

Gotlib tried to find a replacement, but the only available judge who could be found was Roy McMurtry, Francis' former lawyer.

"All we need is for Mr. Francis' mother to be a judge, and that will round things out nicely," said Tim Danson, Lewis' Toronto lawyer.

Lewis named Francis, Ben Johnson's former coach, in his suit against Stern, a German magazine, and Darrell Robinson, Lewis' former teammate. The suit says Lewis was libeled in the Stern article, in which Robinson said he sold Lewis banned performance-enhancing steroids.

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