Toronto city council candidate Michael Thompson told CP24 on Tuesday that he will focus his energy on his re-election campaign despite the sexual assault charges laid against him last week.

Thompson said that his legal team advised him not to speak on the matter, but added that he is “still the Councillor for Scarborough Centre.”

“I have been the Councillor for Scarborough Centre for 19 years. I’ve worked hard for this community and I will continue to do that,” he said.

Thompson was charged with two counts of sexual assault last week, stemming from an alleged incident at a private residence in Muskoka in July of this year.

The complaints were allegedly made by two women, according to Calvin Barry, Thompson’s former lawyer.

Barry stepped away from the case on Saturday, citing close personal ties with Thompson, which he said would prevent him from being objective enough to carry out his duties as a lawyer.

Before resigning, Barry told CTV News Toronto that Thompson plans to plead not guilty and will put up a “vigorous defence.”

Thompson has since hired Jennifer Brevorka, a partner at Henein Hutchison LLP, to represent him.

Thompson, 62, stepped down as one of John Tory’s deputy mayors and chair of Toronto's Economic and Community Development Committee last week.

"I take sexual assault allegations and charges against any individual very seriously," Tory said at the time.

"While the councillor is facing these charges, it would not be appropriate for him to continue serving as a deputy mayor or chair of a standing council committee. He has agreed and will be resigning those positions effective immediately."

Thompson has been involved in municipal politics for nearly three decades and has been a city councillor since 2003.

The charges against him have not been tested in court.