Have you received copy of 5th superceding information? Yes your honor.
Have you discussed with lawyers? Yes.
Judge Edmunds is going to discuss charges. The elements include count 1: conspiracy to violate Hobbs-Act.
Government will have to say this occurred July 2002 until about July 2008.
Mercado pleads guilty to conspiracy charge
10:43AM Chutkow states terms of plea agreement. Contains a guideline that says 60 months is maximum but looking for downwards of that. Both government and defense feel that there are mitigating circumstances. Different from other defendants: 1 didn't take kickbacks and 2 evidence that he was a reluctant participant. He did at times pushback but he did cave. this does not excuse conduct. Recognizes his participation in conspiracy. Have agreed to no higher than 18 months in prison. If the court agrees to it, they dismiss all other charges. If the court accepts it, Mercado will waive his right to question sentence. Have agreed to a fine no higher than $100,000.
10:47AM Judge Edmunds: Do you understand Mercado? Yes I do.
Has anyone promised that I would be lenient? No.
Are you pleading guilty of free will? Yes.
Tell me what you did. Crandall will ask you questions.
Crandall says have we reviewed this carefully? Yes.
In addition to the facts did you and I and Minock review activities that occurred in February 2007? Yes.
You did have conversations then with Walbridge? Yes.
And you related to them that the mayor would appreciate them joint-venturing on the Oakwood project? Yes.
Did you convey to Mr. Hausmann of Walbridge, strike that. That's it.
Chutkow says that in making communications with Houseman you were attempting to influence process? Yes.
At the mayor's direction, Mercado helped to get Ferguson contracts. Crandall says he has already agreed to that.
Judge says this happened in the city of Detroit? Yes says Mercado.
Judge asks Mercado's counsel is satisfied? We are.
Mercado are you satisfied with plea? Yes
Judge: it is finding of the court that the defendant is competent. Defendant plea therefore accepted. Will defer sentencing until after the conclusion of proceedings in the Kilpatrick trial.
10:52AM Hearing concludes. No word whether he will serve as a witness in the Kilpatrick trial. But looks likely that he will given the inclusion of Kwame Kilpatrick's name in the hearing.