Opening statements begin Friday in former Detroit mayor Kwame Kilpatrick's federal trial

Kilpatrick, his father, Bobby Ferguson, Victor Mercado face federal corruption charges; trial ready to begin Friday in Detroit

By Mara MacDonald - Reporter

DETROIT - After everything that has happened -- the text messages, the resignation, the jail time. It finally comes down to this.

It is a trial which at its heart has this supposition of bribery, extortion and fraud at the hands of Kwame Kilpatrick, his father Bernard Kilpatrick, his best friend Bobby Ferguson and former Detroit water director Victor Mercado.

On Friday morning, federal prosecutors who have been working on the case for years have to either put up or shut up.

"I anticipate the government to keep it simple, keep them engaged, come out with a big theme, 'Gang of four,' 'Sold the city,' whatever the case may be," said Local 4 Legal Expert Todd Flood. "I anticipate the defense will come out humanized and say this is about, you know, it must be so because the government said it is. That's not how it works in the United States."

Flood, a man who is considered a top-drawer trial lawyer in Metro Detroit, says it's the government's case to lose. However, with that said, there are no slam dunks here.

"It's difficult because there are so many witnesses in this case, because there is so much evidence. It's insanely difficult, for the government. Multiply that by two for the defense," Flood said.

The trial is expected to last for months. It may be January 2013 before a final judgment is reached.

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