He became involved in this investigation in March 2006 investigating charges of bribery involving Kwame Kilpatrick.
Investigation involved use of federal grand jury- larger group than current jury pool.
Pulled former mayor Kilpatrick's credit history records- looking for any indication of unusual banking activity.
First Independence bank- found a MasterCard account with Kwame's name. One of the things that stood out was cash payments. Apparently $282, 0000 payments in the period from 2002 to 2008.
Looked at KKF 1a- underlying documents supporting cash transactions from First Independence bank.
Bullotta admits KKF 1a to the court. August 1st 2002- document intake for $3,400 as a cash payment. Exhibit KKF 1- cash intakes from 2002 to 2008. Cash payments made on his credit card, 3 different payments in Kwame's name. Begin August 1 2002 and there were regular cash payments thereafter. The last cash payment was in 2009. Paycheck was deposited at JP Morgan Chase. Kwame's wages ranged from $172,000 in 2002 to $127,000 in 2008. IRS subpoenaed JP Morgan Chase for those documents from 2 accounts- one in Kwame's name and another joint with Carlota. The city was not paying former mayor's salary in cash.
KKF 3a exhibit submitted- JP Morgan Chase summary of deposits. The former mayor was getting deposits in cash that IRS could not identify. Shows a $4,000 cash deposit in January 2005 into Bank One account (which became JP Morgan Chase)
Exhibit KKF 3- a summary of cash deposit tickets at JP Morgan Chase. Three accounts reflected in the charts held individually in Kwame's name and then joint with Carlita Kilpatrick. All deposits made are in cash. There were regular cash deposits- sometimes within a day of each other and sometimes several weeks apart. Deposits stop in late 2008- September 29, 2008 for $3,000.
This cash was not traced to Kwame Kilpatrick paycheck. IRS interviewed bank tellers and members of the former mayor's protection detail. There were also cashiers checks at First Independence Bank. Exhibit KKF 4A- cashiers checks. Summary of the cashier’s checks purchased at First Independence Bank in Kwame Kilpatrick's name. Total is $34,000. KKF 7- summary of cash loan payments in Kwame Kilpatrick's name. Cash and de it payments. Total is approximately $10,000. Other bank accounts included Carlita's individual account at Comerica and Kwame's at State Employees Credit Union in 2001-2002. Also had an account at Bank of America.
KKF 8A- summary of cash deposits into Bank of America in both Kwame and Carlita's name- 4 payments totaling $8,000.
KKF 5A- joint account at Florida's Premier Bank in 2007-2008 for $5,000. KKF 12- summary of all different accounts which includes cash payments and on the credit card. Summary of total cash deposits at JP Morgan Chase: $194,500. The chart summarizes all the other underlying charts. In 2001, Kwame was using State Employee Credit Union. IRS saw frequent cash withdrawals and no cash deposits in 2001 before he became mayor. His salary went into that account. Exhibit KKF 14- January 2001. See some ATM adjustments, all the money going in. Did not find any cash deposits. KKF 13- summary of cash withdrawals from State Employee account. Frequent cash withdrawals, smaller dollar amounts. IRS noticed that once Kwame became mayor in 2002, switched from frequent cash withdrawals to cash deposits at the JP Morgan Chase account.2001-2008 total cash deposits in time as mayor $531,401.72.
8:59AM Kwame's lawyer Jim Thomas asks for sidebar. Kwame Kilpatrick passes a book to Bobby Ferguson at the defendants' table while defense and government lawyers confer at sidebar with Judge Nancy Edmunds.
8:59AM Court called to session.
8:45AM First at the defendants' table this morning is Bernard Kilpatrick conservatively attired in a dark suit. Next in is Victor Mercado who sits quietly next to his lawyers. Last to arrive in the courtroom this morning is Kwame Kilpatrick who goes over to talk to longtime friend Bobby Ferguson before taking his seat. First witness expected to testify this morning is Internal Revenue Service agent Ron Sauer.
About the author:
Alexandra Harland is a Princeton undergrad and has a masters degree in International affairs with Columbia. A Montreal native, she worked with the Daily Telegraph newspaper for a few years before transitioning to TV, when she worked at ABC News with Peter Jennings. Alexandra has also worked in newsrooms in both Detroit and Boston.