DETROIT (WXYZ) - During a news conference Wednesday afternoon, the U.S. Attorney's Office provided details on new indictments against former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, his father and others.
A federal grand jury returned a 38-count superseding indictment against Kwame Kilpatrick, his father Bernard Kilpatrick, former head of the city water department Victor Mercado, contractor Bobby Ferguson and former Kilpatrick aide Derrick Miller.
They are charged with using the city of Detroit to engage in extortion, bribery, racketeering and fraud.The 89-page indictment alleges that the men worked together to steer city contracts, accepted hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes, and used non profit funds to funnel bribes.
According to the indictment, Kilpatrick used a number of funds--including his inaugural committee, campaign committee, and other non-profit funds--to conceal over $286,000 in kickbacks.
Kilpatrick, his father and Kilpatrick's aide Derrick Miller are accused of taking bribes totaling at least $360,000 from Cobo Contractor Karl Kado.
The additional charges and defendants are being included in the superseding indictment in the case of United States of America vs. Kwame Kilpatrick, which was originally filed on June 23rd, 2010.
The indictment also alleges that Kilpatrick solicited and took private jet flights worth over $300,000 from a representative from an unnamed company. In 2008, Action News reported that Kilpatrick flew on the private jet of Tony Soave, a Detroit based city contractor.
While a state representative, the indictment alleges that Kwame Kilpatrick used over $280,000 in grant monies from the State of Michigan, funds that were supposed to help children and seniors in Detroit. Instead, the indictment alleges that a large part of the money was spent by Kilpatrick or his wife on personal expenses, and by Ferguson to refurbish his offices.
On Tuesday, Action News Investigators learned that the indictments would be announced and that some high profile names would be among those charged.
It was no secret that the Feds had been scrutinizing Detroit’s former mayor and his father for years. Now the corruption probe may finally be winding down – with these indictments.
Ferguson and Kwame Kilpatrick have already been indicted in two separate investigations: In June, a federal grand jury indicted the former mayor on 19 counts of tax and mail fraud charges related to his controversial Kilpatrick Civic Fund. In September, the grand jury indicted Ferguson on charges including conspiracy, money laundering, conspiracy to obstruct justice, and felon in possession of a firearm, in connection with the Garden View Estates project in Detroit.
Copyright (c) 2010 The E.W. Scripps Company
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