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Feds Urge Court To Deny Ex-Detroit Mayor Kilpatrick's Appeal

DETROIT (WWJ/AP) - The government is urging a federal appeals court to deny former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick's request to have his corruption conviction overturned and grant him a new trial.

Kilpatrick is serving a 28-year prison sentence after a jury last year convicted him of two dozen crimes, from tax evasion to bribery.

He appealed, saying there was a conflict involving his attorneys, among other reasons.

That claim stems from the fact Kilpatrick attorney Jim Thomas previously represented Gasper Fiore, the owner of Boulevard and Trumbull towing, a man who testified against Kilpatrick in his trial for bribery and other acts of public malfeasance.

Kilpatrick was convicted, among many other things, of trying to extort money from Fiore and other members of the business community.

The appeal also says FBI agents were given too much latitude to act as experts in their trial testimony.

" … Kilpatrick asks for a new trial because the district court erred by allowing two case agents to repeatedly include inadmissible evidence in the guise of lay opinion testimony," the appeal says. [Read more HERE].

Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew Goetz responded in a filing Thursday with the Cincinnati-based 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Goetz said Kilpatrick can't prove his defense lawyers had a conflict of interest.

In addition, Goetz says the court should affirm a 21-year sentence given to co-defendant Bobby Ferguson, a contractor who also is appealing.

Other than confessing to lying under oath about an affair with a staffer, Kilpatrick has repeatedly denied any legal wrongdoing.

[Catch up on the Kilpatrick case].

TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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