Kilpatrick's lawyers to ask for 15 year sentence

Kilpatrick's lawyers to ask for 15 year sentence

Posted: Updated:
Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick
Former city contractor Bobby Ferguson Former city contractor Bobby Ferguson
DETROIT (WJBK) -

Lawyers representing former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick are due in court Monday. They'll offer their sentencing recommendations for the convicted former mayor. It's believed the defense team will ask for a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. Kilpatrick will be sentenced Thursday.

Federal prosecutors are recommending Kilpatrick receive one of the longest public corruption sentences in recent U.S. history – at least 28 years in prison.

In making their recommendation to U.S. District Court Judge Nancy Edmunds, prosecutors wrote: "Kwame Kilpatrick was entrusted by the citizens of Detroit to guide their city through one of its most challenging periods. The city desperately needed resolute leadership. Instead it got a mayor looking to cash in on his office through graft, extortion and self-dealing."

The feds also filed a sentencing recommendation for Kilpatrick crony Bobby Ferguson, who's also facing a lengthy prison sentence for strong-arming contractors into hiring him for city jobs -- sometimes demanding payment even when he didn't do any work. Prosecutors say sentencing guidelines for Ferguson are 30 years to life and argue that "Ferguson is deserving of a sentence at or near that of Kilpatrick."

 Ferguson's sentencing recommendation was filed first thing this morning. It was written by assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Bullotta, who argued: "Although Bobby Ferguson was not a public official, he worked hand-in-glove with Mayor Kilpatrick in a criminal partnership of enormous proportions. It was Ferguson, rather than Kilpatrick, who was the 'boots on the ground' of the extortion enterprise, directly issuing threats to the local business people."

The feds calculate that Ferguson got $127 million worth of city contracts during Kilpatrick's time in office. They estimated that "at least $73 million of which were illegal proceeds from extortion."

Kilpatrick was mayor from 2002 to 2008, when he was forced to resign in the wake of the text message scandal Jim Schaefer and I revealed in the Detroit Free Press.

Prosecutors said the scheme worked like this: "While Ferguson relied on Kilpatrick to back up his threats, Ferguson drove the extortion machine. With ruthless abandon, he bullied local businessmen and women, threatening to cancel their contracts and promising to visit financial harm upon them if they did not accede to his demands.

"The enterprise hit its crescendo when Ferguson was able to force local contractors to give him payments for no work in order to keep their city contracts."

Kilpatrick and Ferguson are scheduled to appear in federal court next Thursday, Oct. 10, when U.S. District Court Judge Nancy Edmunds, who has the final say on sentencing, will announce how much time the men will get.

Kilpatrick was found guilty in March of 24 counts of public corruption and tax charges. Ferguson was found guilty of 9 corruption charges. Kilpatrick's father, who was also facing racketeering and tax charges, was found guilty of one tax violation. His sentencing recommendation is expected next week.

All three men are appealing their convictions.

  • Download the FOX 2 Apps


  • FOX 2 News Five-Day Forecast
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Child, 3, hospitalized after falling from second-story window

    Child, 3, hospitalized after falling from second-story window

    Monday, September 1 2014 11:31 PM EDT2014-09-02 03:31:18 GMT
    A 3-year-old child is receiving treatment at St. John hospital after falling from a second-story window in Detroit this weekend.
    A 3-year-old child is receiving treatment at St. John hospital after falling from a second-story window in Detroit this weekend.
  • Boy, 5, thrown from father's dirt bike and run over

    Boy, 5, thrown from father's dirt bike and run over

    Monday, September 1 2014 11:18 PM EDT2014-09-02 03:18:50 GMT
    Residents inside Northport Apartments in Macomb Township say that Sunday afternoon they saw a 27-year-old neighbor riding a dirt bike with his 5-year-old son along busy Garfield Road.Neighbors say they've seen him riding before -- but this time he had his child with him."The first thing that caught my eye was he was riding in his dad's lap," neighbor Tim Hale said. "And they were weaving throughout drainage ditches which are pretty steep." Macomb County sheriffs say the small, orange dirt bik...
    Residents inside Northport Apartments in Macomb Township say that Sunday afternoon they saw a 27-year-old neighbor riding a dirt bike with his 5-year-old son along busy Garfield Road.Neighbors say they've seen him riding before -- but this time he had his child with him."The first thing that caught my eye was he was riding in his dad's lap," neighbor Tim Hale said. "And they were weaving throughout drainage ditches which are pretty steep." Macomb County sheriffs say the small, orange dirt bik...
  • Flooding, power outages from latest round of storms

    Flooding, power outages from latest round of storms

    Monday, September 1 2014 10:14 PM EDT2014-09-02 02:14:26 GMT
    More flooding and power outages are being reported after the latest batch of storms.
    More flooding and power outages are being reported after the latest batch of storms.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices