Detroit — Kwame Kilpatrick's lawyer vowed to appeal Monday's racketeering conviction and ask for a new trial.
Defense attorney James C. Thomas also said he will start trying to mitigate the amount of time Kilpatrick will spend in federal prison after being convicted of 24 charges.
A sentencing date isn't set, but Kilpatrick and contractor Bobby Ferguson were convicted of multiple felonies that carry penalties of 20 years apiece. If they were sentenced consecutively, Kilpatrick would face more than 300 years in prison, but that's an unlikely scenario, said Jennifer Belveal, a Detroit attorney.
"There is a good possibility that the sentences will run concurrently," Belveal said.
Thomas did not know where Kilpatrick will be imprisoned immediately. He hopes the former Detroit mayor will be housed at the federal prison in nearby Milan.
"It's obviously one of the more comfortable places, though it's not a country club," said Thomas.
He shed light on Kilpatrick's private moments after being convicted of 24 counts Monday morning.
"He talked with his wife and kids," Thomas said.
"He's pretty strong and doesn't show his emotions, but it obviously is affecting him."
Federal prosecutors announced they would continue their prosecution of contractor Ferguson, months after a jury failed to reach a verdict in his separate bid-rigging trial. A trial is set for May in federal court.
Meanwhile, Kilpatrick could challenge his conviction based on several pretrial rulings regarding jury makeup, pretrial publicity and a judge's refusal to let the former Detroit mayor fire his attorney on the eve of trial.
He lost an appeal in late August of U.S. District Judge Nancy Edmunds' order denying him access to jury records in hopes of dismissing the City Hall corruption indictment because there weren't enough blacks in the jury pool.
A three-judge panel ruled Kilpatrick's appeal was premature but could be reviewed if the former Detroit mayor was convicted.
He set up another possible appeal in August by trying, at the 11th hour, to fire his taxpayer-funded lawyer, Thomas.
Kilpatrick claimed their relationship was broken because he didn't trust the attorney and they had shouting matches.
Kilpatrick also set up a potential appeal during the jury-selection process.
Prosecutors used five of their 14 peremptory challenges to remove potential black jurors while the defense used all 28 of their challenges to remove white jurors. The defense team's fight against losing black jurors could factor into an appeal.
In the end, eight African-Americans were included — five as jurors and three as alternates.
Kilpatrick also tried, unsuccessfully, to move the trial out of Michigan, arguing he couldn't get a fair trial in Detroit.
Detroit News Staff Writer Kim Kozlowski contributed