Kilpatrick charity bankrolled yoga class at mansion

Kwame Kilpatrick’s yoga instructor testified Wednesday he was paid by the mayor’s charity to give yoga sessions at Cobo Center and the Manoogian Mansion.

Red Lotus Yoga owner Brian Granader was hired in late 2002 when he worked for another studio and continued teaching Kilpatrick yoga until mid-2003.

Yoga studio owner Brian Granader

Prosecutors allege the expense was illegal and violated IRS laws and defrauded donors of the Kilpatrick Civic Fund charity. The nonprofit group was set up to benefit kids and the community.

“Have you ever heard of the Kilpatrick Civic Fund?” Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer Blackwell asked.

“No,” he said.

“Were any youths or groups present at the lessons?” Blackwell asked.

“No,” Granader said.

Kilpatrick wasn’t alone during the lessons. Sometimes, there were as many as eight people there, including what Granader assumed were the mayor’s bodyguards.

“They had weapons,” he said.

Robert Snell

Robert Snell is the Detroit News federal courts reporter. He can be reached at rsnell@detnews.com or (313) 222-2028.