Synagro exec takes stand against Kilpatrick, father

The long-anticipated testimony of Synagro scandal figure James R. Rosendall Jr. has begun.

James R. Rosendall 2 (Thumbnail)


Rosendall is a West Michigan businessman whose undercover skills were last seen in 2011, when The News obtained FBI surveillance video showing him handing a city official a $2,000 payoff.

Jurors first saw Rosendall during opening statements, when prosecutors played a snippet of a hidden video in which Bernard Kilpatrick tells Rosendall not to give him money in public.

Prosecutors also showed jurors a surveillance photo of Rosendall carrying a box while walking with Bernard Kilpatrick. The box contained a bribe for Bernard Kilpatrick — a case of Cristal champagne, according to the feds.

Prosecutors allege that Kwame Kilpatrick and his dad took $100,000 worth of private jet flights from Rosendall in exchange for supporting a $1.2 billion sludge deal, according to prosecutors.

And Bernard Kilpatrick allegedly tried to extort $5,000 from Rosendall.

Mike Wilkinson
Mike has been a reporter at The Detroit News since 2006.