10:24AM Rataj cross examination ends.
Judge calls recess for 20 minutes.
10:03AM Rataj says you testified to the grand jury that you put the money in a vacuum cleaner "or something like that". "So you don't know for sure you put the money there, " says Rataj. I think so says Clift. Back in Texas, Clift admits that he didn't give the money to Kwame right away. Left it in the hotel room. "Weren't you worried about a maid or someone getting it?" asks Rataj. "No, I had it tucked away," says Clift. Rataj asks if Clift asked for a cut of the $50,000. No sir says Clift. After giving Kwame the money, there was no conversation about giving him the rest of the $40,000. Neither Kwame nor Bobby ever told Clift not to talk about the money. At the grand jury, Clift asked about the exchange of the $50,000 in the hotel room. The government asked what Kwame physically did when he gave him the money. Clift didn't remember how Kwame received the money. Clift back in Detroit in October 2008 which is when Kwame received the remainder of the money.
Rataj says wasn't it the government who suggested the location of the apartment to you in grand jury. Clift didn't know the name of it. Rataj says you weren't asked a lot of details about the drop. Clift says I don't know, don't remember. Clift got a call several weeks after grand jury in November 2010 from IRS special agent Sauer about Clift's stay at the Athenaeum hotel in June 2008. Rataj shows him hotel receipt. Clift says I stayed for 2 days. Rataj introduces stack of Athenaeum hotel receipts as evidence. Rataj says IRS Sauer asked Clift about time frame of money delivery. Clift said he wasn't sure. Then Rataj says Special Agent Sauer asked you about the trip to Dallas. Clift indicated to agent Sauer that was "probably" when he gave him the $50,000. Then Sauer asked about the Detroit stay where he gave the $40,000. Clift indicated to Sauer "that could have been" when he gave the money to Kwame. Rataj says "You used words like probably, could have and not sure." Yes says Clift. Clift told agents June 2008 was too early to give money to Kwame. But said that October "could have been" when he delivered money.
Rataj says there were no receipts for stays in Detroit between June and October. There is no evidence he was in Detroit between those two dates. Rataj asks about U.S. Attorney Mark Chutkow's grand jury questioning when Chutkow said "That all seems so complicated." Clift responded obviously they must not want anyone to know about it if they are using me.
Rataj says if they didn't want anyone to know, wouldn't it have been easier to cut out the middle man. "Yes" responds Clift, "that makes sense."
Rataj says that a grand juror said to the witness "Mr. Clift that all seems so weird to me."
Rataj says "Bottom line is that you have no evidence that you were here August or September 2008. No hotel or flight receipts, nothing."
No says Clift.
9:32AM Mike Rataj, lawyer for Bobby Ferguson, cross-examines. Friendship with Kwame dates back to 1989 as freshman at Florida A & M. Didn't graduate from college but went back to Chicago. at college, used to cut football players hair. Went back to Chicago and became a barber. then worked in jewelry. Met entertainers, R. Kelly, Common, who all bought jewelry from him. Doesn't know about any drug dealers. Made frequent trips to Detroit. Drove most of the time, booked his own flights and hotels. Most of the time stayed at the Athenaeum hotel unless he stayed with "a lady friend". Never used an alias when he booked hotel rooms. Sometimes his room was comped but sometimes he paid.
Primarily went to Detroit to stay with Kwame. Visits were mostly social- for sporting event, party or just to "say hey." Sometimes went months without talking to Kwame and Bobby. Met Bobby at a pre-season game for the Pistons where a client was trying out. It was before he became mayor. Clift was in Chicago when he was subpoenaed. He got a phone call first first asking how he wanted to be served. Thinks he talked to the FBI. Told there was a subpoena for a grand jury, didn't want to scare him with federal agents at the door. So it was faxed. In the conversation, it was indicated it was about Kwame. Got the subpoena sometime prior to September 29th, 2010.
Rataj moves into grand jury testimony. Before going into grand jury room, Clift has an immunity agreement to protect him. In grand jury, tells story about how Bobby gave him $90,000. Clift had come to see Kwame when he was "under siege". Clift booked his own room at the Athenaeum. He had flown on an unknown airline. Saw Kwame on this trip, Carlita and all 3 boys. Testified to grand jury that he also saw Bernard Kilpatrick and Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick. Clift doesn't remember seeing them now thought. Rataj gets him to say that he can't remember dates of his stay during this "support stay" where he got the $90,000 from Bobby Ferguson. Clift doesn't specifically remember how many times or where he saw Kwame.
Rataj gets Clift to say he's not sure exactly what day Bobby Ferguson came over. 90% sure it was the day after the phone call.
Fergsuon told him "I have something for Black."
Rataj says that in grand jury testimony Clift didn't remember what name Bobby referred to Kwame as. According to grand jury testimony, Clift says that Ferguson comes with a shopping bag full of $90,000. Bobby Ferguson never gave him instructions on what to do with the money. Only instructions were to hold the money. and then Bobby Ferguson left the room. The money was in 9 stacks of $10,000 in $100 and $50 bills. Clift says most stacks were $100. "The juices were flowing," says Clift referring to his nervousness about carrying the money. Doesn't remember how many stacks he stuffed in his gym short and jean pockets. Rataj comically sticks his pants out to demonstrate how much Clift's pants would bulge. Rataj says "Your testimony is you got through airport security with no problem with your pockets bulging out?" Clift says "I felt the bulge" but didn't think it was visible. Rataj says "Ferguson never gave you further instructions on what to do with the money."
Rataj says "Isn't it the first time either Kwame or Ferguson ask you to hold money?" Yes responds Clift.
Then goes to Dallas with money. Rataj says "Mr. Kilpatrick never says hey bring me 50 large?"
Clift says Kwame never said anything about bringing money and that it was his idea to bring $50,000 to Dallas.
Got to Texas on September 20th 2008 and thinks he left on the 23rd.
Clift says he thinks he saw Kwame on each day of the trip. He saw he on the 20th at the hotel. They went house hunting after going to church.
Rataj says at least one or two days elapsed before giving Kwame the money. Yes responds Clift.
Where you nervous asks Rataj. Clift says he doesn't know how to qualify it but yes it's a big deal to hold on to that much money.
9:07AM Michael Bullotta for government questions Mahlon Clift. Knew Kwame Kilpatrick from college at Florida A & M in 1988-1989. Met as freshmen and introduced her to Kwame Kilpatrick. Kwame was a groomsman at his wedding.Has met Bobby Ferguson through Kwame at a Pistons game way before he became mayor. Friends with Bobby over the years too. Clift's wife and Carlita were friends too. Kwame is one of his best friends. They took a trip to Houston and Bermuda as well. A client of Clift's client R. Kelly had a concert in Houston. Bobby, Derrick Miller, Mike Martin, Kwame and Clift went on the trip to Houston. They flew on a private jet but doesn't know whose. Sgt Love, Kwame, Andre Cunningham aka "Scabini," Derrick Miller, Bobby, Jeff Beasly, himself amongst others on the trip.
He paid about $2,000 for the Bermuda trip.
In 2008, Clift came to Detroit because Kwame was having personal issues to be a support system like he was through his divorce. "I consider him like I brother who I love," says Clift.