Jurors convicted former Democratic Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick on a range of corruption charges Monday, practically guaranteeing a prison sentence that surpasses 20 years.
Prosecutors during the five-month trial portrayed Mr. Kilpatrick, 42, as a morally bankrupt politician who accepted bribes and profited from illegally forged contracts, The Associated Press reports. They accused him of operating a "private profit machine" from City Hall. Internal Revenue Service agents, meanwhile, said Mr. Kilpatrick lived at least $840,000 above his means; that's the amount he spent above his annual mayoral salary, AP reports.
And yet Mr. Kilpatrick seemed genuinely puzzled as jurors ticked off the 24 charges, 18 of which they found him guilty.
He was elected in 2001 and served until his resignation in 2008. He's always maintained his innocence on the corruption charges, AP says. His 2008 resignation was due to a plea of guilty for a different scandal — to obstruction of justice involving a sexually explicit text message and to an admission of an adulterous affair with his chief of staff, AP says.
Mr. Kilpatrick's harshest conviction is for a racketeering conspiracy charge. That conviction alone could carry a sentence of 20 years, AP reports.
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