LaPierre Cops Plea, Agrees to Testify against Larry Langford

UPDATE: Kyle at the Birmingham Weekly has more details, including this:

In exchange for LaPierre’s testimony in this case and possibly others, the government agrees to ask for a sentence of 48 months in prison. In addition, LaPierre will pay the government restitution of $371,932, in addition to unpaid taxes.

So it looks like LaPierre will do jail time.

****

The shit has officially hit the fan.

al-lapierreLobbyist Al LaPierre today has agreed to plead guilty and testify in the federal criminal case against Birmingham Mayor Larry Langford. In a deal struck this morning, LaPierre will plead guilty to two counts of conspiracy and one count of filing a false tax return, said his lawyer Tommy Spina.

The deal requires LaPierre to testify in the Aug. 31 case against Langford and Montgomery investment banker Bill Blount.

“He felt this was the right thing to do. He know he has to pay a consequence. He accepts that and will hold his head up,” Spina said.

LaPierre has agreed to forfeit $371,932 and pay all taxes due from 2003 to 2006. LaPierre is expected to formally enter the plea Thursday before U.S. District Judge Scott Coogler.

“He felt this was the right thing to do.”  I’ll just bet he did.  Looks like he will avoid jail time with this deal.

Mayor Langford had been pushing for a third delay of his trial for mail fraud, bribery, money laundering and conspiracy charges, but Judge Scott Coogler turned him down yesterday.  Barring divine intervention, or more legal maneuvering, the trial is on for August 31, six days after the Birmingham City Council election.

Who’da thought Birmingham politics could get more interesting?

9 Responses to “LaPierre Cops Plea, Agrees to Testify against Larry Langford”

  1. Tricia says:

    He probably realized that it really wasn’t worth going down with the ship. Especially with him just being the middle-man. I’d really like to see LaLa and Blount do some hard time, though.

  2. Bill says:

    In the interest of divine intervention, the mayor has ordered extra supplies of ashes and sackcloth.

  3. Kathy says:

    Oh, I’d be right there with LaPierre on wanting to stay out of prison. I wonder who the Justice Department considers to be the bigger target, Langford or Blount? If the lesser target is smart, he’ll start singing too.

  4. Kathy says:

    In the interest of divine intervention, the mayor has ordered extra supplies of ashes and sackcloth.

    *hee* I’m glad you caught that. I was afraid I was too subtle.

  5. Tricia says:

    I’d have a hard time choosing. Corrupt government official vs. corrupt developer with his fingers in lots and lots of pies.

    Strictly speculating… Blount’s probably made a lot (like A LOT!) more money off all the deals. I’ve been pretty horrified by how cheaply bought off our local pols are.

    If y’all ever see my name attached to a scandal like this, it’ll have cost millions. :-)

  6. Kathy says:

    I just updated the post to reflect Kyle’s report that LaPierre will serve 48 months as well as paying back taxes and restitution. So not such a sweet deal after all, although I bet he would have gotten lots more time if convicted.

    I’d have a hard time choosing. Corrupt government official vs. corrupt developer with his fingers in lots and lots of pies.

    My cynical fear is the government official would be the big target. Larry won’t have any money left to make campaign contributions after this. I hope I’m wrong. In the grand scheme of things, I’d prefer Blount get the worst of this.

    If y’all ever see my name attached to a scandal like this, it’ll have cost millions. :-)

    Tricia, you don’t have it in you. :)

  7. Tricia says:

    Ha! You’re right. It’s easier to go to work every day. The corruption road to prosperity requires too much sucking up to douchehounds.

  8. Helen says:

    Have the voters learned a lesson–that it takes more than talk? Fairfield, Visionland, County Commission, City Hall–there’s a pattern. Fool me 4 times . . . .

  9. Kathy says:

    The corruption road to prosperity requires too much sucking up to douchehounds.

    And the need for constant showers would really run up the water bill.

    Have the voters learned a lesson–that it takes more than talk?

    Helen, I hope so.

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