A close aide to beleaguered former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick on Monday pleaded guilty to bribery and lying about his taxes — and will cooperate with the case against Kilpatrick as part of his plea deal.
Derrick Miller, a former high school classmate of Kilpatrick and his former chief administrative officer, pleaded guilty Monday in District Court. He asked for a 41-51 month sentence in exchange for his cooperation in Kilpatrick’s trial, scheduled for September 2012, related to what prosecutors call “The Kilpatrick Enterprise.”
Kilpatrick, his father, Bernard Kilpatrick, Miller, contractor Bobby Ferguson and former head of Detroit’s water and sewage department Victor Mercado were indicted in December under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), regarding an alleged plot to extort millions from city contractors.
Among Miller’s admissions in the plea deal, according to Robert Snell and Mike Wilkinson of the Detroit News:
From 2005 to 2007, Miller admitted pocketing $115,000 from a real-estate broker who received commissions on the sale and lease of city-owned properties.
In 2008, Miller failed to report almost $47,000 of that money on his tax return, according to the plea deal.
He also failed to report $568,000 in income he received for helping a real estate company that bought and leased a portfolio of properties. In all, Miller owes $240,858 in additional taxes for 2007.
The other four in the “Kilpatrick Enterprise” face 37 counts of corruption, bribery and racketeering.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark Chutkow recommended that Miller serve up to 10 years and pay restitution and up to a $200,000 fine, depending on his cooperation in the upcoming trial.
Kilpatrick previously did jail time after, in January 2008, a series of steamy text messages between him and his Chief of Staff Christine Beatty contradicted both of their testimonies under oath that they had not had an affair. Kilpatrick pleaded guilty to perjury and obstruction of justice, and then did more jail time for violating the terms of his parole.