Another potential conflict of interest revealed in Kilpatrick federal corruption probe case

DETROIT (WXYZ) - In a letter filed in U.S. District Court today, Bobby Ferguson's attorney informed the judge presiding over the federal corruption case of a potential conflict of interest.

Attorney Gerald Evelyn said in the two-paragraph letter to U.S. District Court Judge Nancy Edmunds that he had represented Johnny Hardiman, who is on the government's witness list.

Evelyn writes that he represented  Hardiman in a 2005 case in Wayne County Circuit Court on "an assault charge against Mr. Hardiman and was completely unrelated to any of the allegations in USA v. Kilpatrick."

At a hearing yesterday, ex-mayor Kwame Kilpatrick asked for a new lawyer based on a potential conflict of interest with his attorney. Judge Edmunds denied his request.

Attorney Jim Thomas who is Kilpatrick's lead attorney represented local businessman Gasper Fiore, who was a witness for the prosecution, but Fiore will not be called to testify.

Also at yesterday's hearing, Judge Edmunds asked all the defense attorneys in the federal case if they had any potential conflicts of interest. Each of them, including Evelyn, shared those in court and also said their clients would waive their right to raise this issue.

Evelyn's letter also says that he spoke to Hardiman and said he waives his right to any potential conflict.

"Mr. Ferguson has also informed me that he waives any conflict whatsoever that may arise out of my previous representation of Mr. Johnny Hardiman," he writes. 

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