August 30, 2011 / 7:40 PM / 8 years ago

Court bars former Detroit mayor from pocketing memoir profits

DETROIT (Reuters) - Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick will be barred from profiting from the sale of his memoirs, a court ruled on Tuesday, until he pays off nearly $900,000 in restitution he still owes under his 2008 conviction on obstruction of justice and perjury charges.

This booking mug shot, released by the Wayne County Sheriff's (Michigan) department on May 25, 2010, shows former Detroit mayor Kwame Kilpatrick during processing. REUTERS/Wayne County Sherriff/Handout

Kilpatrick, released from state prison earlier this month after serving nearly 14 months for violating the terms of his probation, had asked the Michigan Court of Appeals to throw out a lower court’s order establishing an escrow account for profits from the memoir.

But a three-judge panel rejected Kilpatrick’s request, saying it lacked merit.

Under a plea deal he reached with state prosecutors in 2008, Kilpatrick resigned as mayor, spent four months in jail, surrendered his law license and agreed to pay about $1 million in restitution.

He was sent back to prison last year, after a judge ruled he had violated the terms of his probation by failing to report his assets and pay the restitution.

Kilpatrick, 41, still faces multiple federal charges after a grand jury last year indicted him on fraud and tax charges, alleging he used a non-profit fund for cash kickbacks, political campaigns and personal expenses.

Those personal expenses included yoga and golf lessons, summer camp for his children, college tuition for relatives and a crisis manager to burnish his image after public disclosure of text messages of a sexual nature, according to the federal indictment.

In December, federal prosecutors expanded the charges against Kilpatrick to include bid-rigging, bribery, extortion and other offenses involving city sewer, water and construction deals.

His father Bernard Kilpatrick, friend and contractor Bobby Ferguson, and two aides also were charged for what prosecutors called a “wide-ranging and sweeping pattern” of abuse.

The charges included attempts to steer business toward Ferguson including demolition of Tiger Stadium and the renovation of the Book Cadillac Hotel, two of the most noted construction projects in Detroit over the past decade.

The federal trial has been scheduled for September 2012.

Writing by James B. Kelleher; Editing by Jerry Norton

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