Hamilton Councillor Sam Merulla ignores invitation to explain Police Investigation of reported Mafia Connections

Sam Merulla mugs for the camera with a custom-made ‘The Councillor’ shirt.

Sam Merulla’s lawyer sends ‘Cease & Desist’ letter to journalist Donald Best.

by Donald Best, former Sergeant, Detective, Toronto Police

So far, neither Sam Merulla nor his lawyer A. Douglas Burns have responded to my reply to their ‘Cease & Desist’ letter emailed to me on June 11, 2019.

In my June 20, 2019 reply to Mr. Burns, I quoted from the cease & desist letter and offered my invitation to interview Councillor Merulla and/or Mr. Burns on camera so that Canadians will have Mr. Merulla’s side of the story for the first time.

To date, I have not received any response to my letter and must presume that Mr. Merulla has declined to be interviewed.

I’m sure that both Mr. Merulla and his lawyer understand that as an elected official, Councillor Merula’s listing in a leaked police document as an associate of members of organized crime is one of those stories that matter to ordinary Canadians.

In that context, I quote from my June 20, 2019 letter here, and provide copies below of both the June 11, 2019 ‘Cease & Desist’ letter and my June 2019 response – as well as links to my previous articles about Mr. Merulla.

Response by Journalist Donald Best to ‘Cease & Desist’ letter

Letter to A. Douglas Burns from Donald Best

June 20, 2019

1/ Councillor Sam Merulla ‘Cease & Desist’ letter, June 11, 2019.

2/ Invitation to Mr. Merulla to be interviewed on camera.

Dear Mr. Burns,

Thank you for your ‘Cease and Desist’ letter of June 11, 2019 on behalf of your client – Hamilton Ward 4 Councillor Sam Merulla, wherein you state:

“We act for Councillor Sam Merulla. In such capacity, we have been provided with a copy of your recent article.

Mr. Merulla is reluctant to respond to you directly but has requested that we write to you on his behalf that you cease and desist publishing articles replete with speculation and lack of fact or merit and that unnecessarily question the character of not only Councillor Merulla but the character of the late Bernie Morelli. Please govern yourself accordingly.”

I am delighted to hear that Councillor Sam Merulla read my articles, and that he asked you to respond on his behalf.

As you know firsthand from your client and after having yourself read my articles concerning Mr. Merulla, as part of my journalistic research and in the interest of accuracy and fairness, I sent article drafts to Mr. Merulla and invited him to respond prior to publishing.

As your letter confirms, Mr. Merulla did not take the opportunity to respond to my news stories or to clarify for the public how it is that he came to be listed in leaked police reports as a “known associate” of various members of organized crime including ‘Ndrangheta Mafia mob figures such as Antonio ‘Tony’ AGRESTA and the recently-murdered Angelo MUSITANO and his brother Pasquale of the Musitano Crime Family. 

I am currently traveling Canada with a professional film crew producing episodes for the forthcoming ‘Canadian Justice’ television series. In the last three weeks we’ve filmed and interviewed lawyers, law enforcement officers and ordinary citizens in Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto.

We will be in the Hamilton area in July and hereby offer you and/or Councillor Sam Merulla the opportunity to tell ordinary Canadians how it is that Mr. Merulla’s name is listed on an internal police organized crime report.

As to your intimidating warning to ‘govern myself accordingly’, as a journalist I shall continue to accurately and fairly cover stories that matter – and continue to do so without fear or favour.

I’m sure that you and your client understand that as an elected official, Councillor Merula’s listing in a leaked police document as an associate of members of organized crime is one of those stories that matter to ordinary Canadians.

Please contact me should you or Mr. Merulla agree to be professionally interviewed on camera for the Canadian Justice series.

Yours truly,

Donald Best [email protected]

Previous Articles about Hamilton City Councillor Sam Merulla

Leaked Police Report: Hamilton City Councillor Sam Merulla & Former Police Board Chair linked with Organized Crime, ‘Ndrangheta Mafia.

Hamilton Councillor Sam Merulla embraces police investigation of Mafia connections – with custom Godfather logo.

Notice to readers, including Persons and Entities mentoned in articles

As always, if anyone disagrees with anything published at DonaldBest.CA or wishes to provide a public response or comment, please contact me at [email protected] and I will publish your writing with equal prominence. Comments left on articles are moderated about once a day. Or, of course, you can sue me and serve my lawyer Paul Slansky. You can find Mr. Slansky’s information here.

Photos have been included to put context to the article. Their use is the same as with other Canadian news outlets.

Readers are also encouraged to thoroughly study all the evidence available here at DonaldBest.CA, to perform independent research on the Internet and elsewhere, to consider all sides and to make up their own minds as to the events reported on DonaldBest.CA.

Donald Best
Barrie, Ontario, Canada


  • A poster going by Hamilton Hottie attacked Paul Manning for his demeanor.

    With the experience Paul Manning has endured as a policeman with integrity who has been terrorized by both police and maffia can anyone blame Paul Manning for his verbal words. This is proof positive of the mental anguish that Paul has been put through. THIS IS THE GIST OF HIS LAWSUIT .

    To see this politician blatantly don (pun intended) this T shirt shows the smugness of this man noted as a target in a police undercover operation of maffia in Hamilton. This would drive anyone batty seeing such immature conduct by someone voted in and paid his salary by tax payers Anyone good who voted him in as they were fooled should really check out the evidence that supports the target allegation. Paul Manning rented an apartment paid by your tax dollars to bring a wire in to listen and tape Sam M and his associates. As such he was and is a target and any investigation of his claim by dishonorable cops is invalid. Shame on any cop who goes along with this FAKE police complaint by Sam . The maffia are heavily entrenched in Hamilton tied to politicians cops unions lawyers courts. Thus they think their untouchable. A huge sting has arrested a number of mobsters in the Toronto area. The time is now to arrest the Hamilton ones .

    This so called lawyer has obviously used his letter and title to try and obstruct justice as I want to read and see the Intel of the undercover operation as a citizen and I am sure millions of fellow Ontario neighbours do too. Our opinion counts. Our wishes to be respected and followed.

    So to the turkeys who call Paul Manning nuts delusional vulgar. You made him that way. You terrorized him by your corrupt dishonorable actions . Your cover up of criminals. You stole his life both as an officer and husband and father and you robbed the citizens of an honorable cop helping to try and make our lives safer. Your all pathetic excuses of human beings and all you can do is nit pick. I listen to Paul and all I feel is compassion and empathy. You attack Donald Best. I would think Hamilton hottie is wearing a godfather shirt. . .

    Seargent Patterson puts his penis on a female employee and everyone covers him up. You think you insult our intelligence. The same police officer alleged to fudge and fabricate evidence.

    On a nice note fantastic letter Donald Best. Your truly inspirational . Everyone who blows a whistle can follow your writing skills . Obstruction of Justice by intimidation is not the legacy any honorable lawyer would want to have by their name. Any lawyer hired by a politician is subject to intense public scrutiny. Especially one a target of an undercover police investigation involving a number of police forces. Can you imagine if the latest sting on the maffia was handled by incompetent police. Glad to see the Italian police are pushing our police and government to do their jobs. Project Skopa was a disaster and it definitely wasn’t Paul Manning’s fault. Bent cops to blame on the payroll of maffia.

  • Very elegant reply to a piece of ……lawyer believing he can circumvent solid Intel documents from law enforcement by intimidation to cover up so does that amount to obstruction of justice by the lawyer and a politician ? perhaps the RCMP reading would like to investigate that

    I see by no response the intimidation tactic vthus it came back to hit them in the head. A huge sting on well known maffia in the GTA. Bravo. They even seized homes cars jewellery. Are the cafes shut down too ?

    Continued pressure is forcing people to do their jobs. keep up the pressure whistle blowers. These mobsters have been in Canada for so many years and bragged they got away with it. Well for all the other mobsters your fate is coming too and were waiting for crooked cops linked to government and politicians to suffer the same consequences. It is coming.

    It’s Sept 11th. As you tweeted Donald all the military dollars spent in Afghanistan fighting terrorism. Was it not to protect the flow of heroin into our countries. Too. Oops did I say to protect drugs not people

    Can’t wait for your Canadian Justice series. When will we be able to watch it. You have really stepped up to the plate to out corruption and your award from the Civil Liberties proves they were bang on correct.

    To the maffia using covert spying on my windows making me sick and to the endless threats guess what. Take a hike.

    These are the trash that are stinking up the country. You threaten death or jail .. really. I challenged you. Let’s see you. I will just tell everyone on the street on buses or trains. The espionage rapists that live among us. The Havana syndrome is sonar raping covert military attack.

  • Per chance seems strikingly similar to a recent NETFIX series, titled “BAD BLOOD”.

  • florips Bajouco

    I admire your courage and respect to expose these stories. We the citizens have a right to be informed of wrong doing. There was an invitation to allow someone to be given the opportunity to clear their name. It is clear this opportunity is being declined. I too have been told to govern myself according to the law as I have been targeted by lawyer fraud to victimize me financially. Please continue to advocate for all of us by exposing wrong doing. We all appreciate your work for justice for all of us in Ontario. Keep Ontario crime free and safe. Thank you Donald Best.

  • Way to go Donald your calm , cool , professionalism & correct information is taking them down . Never give

  • Grace Joubarne

    Good stuff Donald! If we could only have you cloned so that we could have at least a dozen brilliant, passionate and courageous journalists working for the Canadian People for a change!

    I hope you interview Charles Frey who was falsely convicted and has fought back, showing the depth of corruption in our justice system. And soon I will have lots of details regarding the theft of the legal titles to our properties by the province and a private corporation.