Bishop talked to grand jury two years ago amid Kilpatrick corruption probe

Second Ebenezer Church Bishop Edgar Vann, who is expected to testify this morning in the Kwame Kilpatrick corruption case,  is no stranger to the hot seat.

He testified before a federal grand jury probing City Hall corruption in September 2010. He told The News that day he was not a target of the probe, but declined to say why he was there.

Based on testimony Thursday, we know prosecutors learned Kilpatrick told the bishop to hire his wife, Carlita Kilpatrick, after supporting a request to give the church’s nonprofit group a $150,000 state grant.

Ayanna Ferguson leaves federal court July 13 after her brother Kwame Kilpatrick was arraigned on fraud and income tax counts.

The same day Vann testified, Kilpatrick’s sister Ayanna Ferguson also met with the grand jury.

She ran her brother’s charity, the Kilpatrick Civic Fund, which prosecutors allege the mayor treated like his personal piggy bank, spending donations on yoga classes, golf clubs,  summer camp for his kids, counter-surveillance and anti-bugging equipment and more.

Tax records show Ayanna Ferguson collected $43,115 renting out her house as headquarters of the Kilpatrick Civic Fund.

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