Coun. Giorgio Mammoliti will now likely face charges for spending too much money on his election campaign.

A three-person committee has recommended legal proceedings against the Toronto councillor after an audit found he didn’t follow campaign rules during the 2010 municipal election.

The committee found that there were “apparent contraventions” of the Municipal Elections Act, which stipulates a spending limit of $30,000 during an election cycle. They also found irregularities in office space rental spending, an unregistered donation of $1,200, and a lack professional accounting practices.

If found guilty, Mammoliti could face fines. In addition, he could be removed from office or banned from running in the next election, although those penalties are extremely rare.

An independent audit released last month found Mammoliti exceeded the campaign spending limit by $12,000.

The councillor also failed to report campaign expenses incurred on his personal credit card and improperly reported several others, according to the audit prepared and released last month by Froese Forensic Partners.

The forensic review was requested in 2011 by retired teacher David DePoe. Speaking after the committee’s decision Monday, DePoe said the councillor should have known better.

“Mr. Mammoliti has run for office and won five times,” DePoe said. “He’s not a rookie. For him to say it was inadvertent or a mistake defies credibility for me. He should have known the rules.”

His campaign team maintains that any bookkeeping errors were accidental rather than intentional.

Mammoliti claimed last month he is the victim of a plot by fellow city councillors and citizens to “do some personal damage” against him and his city hall allies.

Mammoliti has not produced any evidence to back his claims that his phone has been wiretapped and that he has been followed.

Mayor Rob Ford is facing a similar situation over his campaign expenses from the last election.

A third-party audit of Ford’s expenses found that the mayor exceeded the spending limit by $40,168, improperly borrowed about $77,000 from his family business, and accepted donations above the allowable amount. Ford will learn Feb. 25 whether the committee will to pursue non-criminal charges against him.

-With a report by CP24’s George Lagogianes

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