Bobby Ferguson convicted of conspiracy, extortion - My29 WFTC Minneapolis-St. Paul

Bobby Ferguson convicted of conspiracy, extortion

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Bobby Ferguson walks out of federal court on Monday. Bobby Ferguson walks out of federal court on Monday.
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DETROIT (WJBK) -

A friend of former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick has been convicted of a federal racketeering conspiracy charge.

Bobby Ferguson told reporters he's innocent Monday outside of federal court in Detroit. "Yes, sir," said Ferguson when asked if he maintains his innocence, despite what jurors said.

Ferguson was found guilty on nine separate counts, including: racketeering conspiracy, extortion, attempted extortion and bribery.

Prosecutors said Kwame Kilpatrick ran a "private profit machine" out of Detroit's City Hall. The government presented evidence to show he got a share of the spoils after ensuring that Ferguson's excavating company was awarded millions in work from the water department.

Business owners said they were forced to hire Ferguson as a subcontractor or risk losing city contracts.

Kilpatrick was convicted of corruption charges, ensuring a return to prison for a man once among the nation's youngest big-city leaders.

- The Associated Press contributed to this report

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