Rep. Rogers disagrees with defense strategy

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - Rep. John Rogers said Wednesday he disagreed with the strategy lawyers representing Larry Langford took in Birmingham mayor's federal corruption trial.

Rogers appeared on FOX6 News Wednesday evening, along with John Carroll, dean of the Cumberland Law School, saying he disagreed with the defense strategy.

"I want my lawyer to fight like he is a mad dog," Rogers said. "Don't just sit there."

Langford was found guilty Wednesday afternoon on all 60 counts against him, ranging from bribery to money laundering which occurred during his tenure as president of the Jefferson County Commission. After the trial, Langford praised his attorneys, blamed race and media bias for his conviction, and promised an appeal.

Rogers said he understands Langford's comments about the racism.

"A lot of black folks feel that way," Rogers said.

The jury, made up of two white men, eight white women, one black man and three black women, convicted Langford of taking thousands of dollars in bribes in exchange for sending county business to the Montgomery firm of investment banker Bill Blount. In return, Blount sent cash and gifts to Langford through Democrat lobbyist Al LaPierre.

Blount and LaPierre both plead guilty earlier this year to charges related in the case.

Judge Carroll said the case was well-tried.

"It was a very legitimate verdict from a mixed-race jury," Carroll said. "The lawyers did the best they could with the evidence they had. The government had an overwhelming amount of evidence."

Rep. Rogers said Wednesday's verdict is a black mark on Birmingham.

"I hate that it happened," Roger said. "We've got to go through all this."