BRADENTON, Fla. — Attorneys for Larry Langford Tuesday filed a notice with the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta stating they intend to appeal his conviction.
The attorneys said that by the end of this week they expect to file a separate motion asking the court to allow Langford to remain out of jail on bond pending the appeal. As of now, he is expected to report to prison on April 5.
The former Jefferson County commissioner and Birmingham mayor was sentenced to 15 years in prison last Friday for his role in a long-running play-to-play scheme centering around the county’s now-failed $3.2 billion of sewer warrants and swaps.
A jury found him guilty of all 60 federal charges for which he had been indicted, including bribery, money laundering, conspiracy, mail fraud, wire fraud, and filing false tax returns.
The notice of appeal sets the stage for the transmittal to the appellate court of all the lower court records, pleadings, and exhibits in Langford’s case that could total 5,000 pages, said attorney Glennon Threatt, who, along with Michael Rasmussen, represents Langford.
Once the records are in Atlanta, a brief citing the basis of the appeal will be filed.
Threatt said the appeal will be based on the same issues cited in Langford’s motion for a new trial last November, which was denied.
That motion cited numerous instances where it was believed that Langford’s trial was flawed, including that certain evidence was not permitted in court or did not meet legal standards, improper closing arguments, the jury deliberated too quickly, and the judge erred in not redacting portions of Langford’s tax returns showing that he declared gambling income.
Gambling is a controversial issue in the state and Langford has been named in several lawsuits claiming that some gaming venues rigged machines so he would win payoffs.
Langford is the most recent in a long list of prior county commissioners and employees, contractors, and others who have been convicted for corruption in the rebuilding of the county’s sewer system. Langford is one of three, however, now convicted of crimes related to the financing of the sewer system.
Other elected officials in Alabama corruption cases, including those associated with the county’s sewer system, have remained free on bond pending their appeals, and some have been out while on appeal for more than two years, Threatt said.