If you’ve had no interest at all in the Kwame Kilpatrick and friends and family corruption trial, this might be the week to engage.
Today we begin hearing confessions and details from the inner sanctum, Derrick Miller. He was to be a defendant -- but he copped a plea and made a deal. Now, he’s being dubbed the star witness.
Thus far, the prosecution has laid out a paper trail, laced with suits. If this contractor paid for expensive suiting for Kilpatrick here, he was thrown some million-dollar contracts.
If Bobby Ferguson wasn’t cut in on deals to do non-existent work for lucrative pay-days, forget about city contracts -- a blur of paper, thick accents from corporation CEOs who found many of the questions hard to understand and mind-numbing minutia. But that will change with Derrick Miller.
He was one of the go-to finance guys for the city, and in exchange for being named as a defendant, he traded years in jail or less for cooperating fully with the feds.
He’s expected to corroborate much of what the jury has already heard and testify that he personally ferried money to the hands of the former mayor -- that he and the former mayor split cash bribes and that he did his share to illegally steer contracts in the direction of boy-hood friend Ferguson.
In fact, Miller is one of the boy-hood friends, one of the trusted few who knew Kilpatrick personally and professionally. And even as the defense will do its best to poke holes in anything he says, likely with "a desperate man will drink dirty water" attacks ... expect three defendants to feel the heat when Miller fires off testimony.
The 41-year-old Miller faced at least 10 years in jail and a quarter million dollars in fines if convicted. His testimony means his sentence for the guilty plea won't exceed 10 years.
If you went to school after English Lit stopped mandating you read, Niccolò Machiavelli's The Prince, you probably think being Machiavellian is the same as being a rap artist ... too bad.
You missed one of the most salient philosophies in political literature and that's to keep your friends close and your enemies closer.
What's this got to do with Kwame Kilpatrick?
Derrick Miller is a former friend and a current enemy, but in court this week, he will be far too close for comfort for anyone at the defense table.