Federal judge reveals why Langford's defense is publicly funded

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - New documents unsealed in the Larry Langford case reveal why a federal judge granted the former mayor's request to have taxpayers pay for his defense.

The 2 pages unsealed Monday are a list of the financial information Langford had to provide proving he needed taxpayers help paying his legal team. Filed back in July, they show what Judge Scott Coogler knew about the mayor's finances then.

The court filings confirm Langford maintained 2 residences, his longtime home in Fairfield with a $1800 mortgage payment each month, and a loft on 20th Street in downtown Birmingham with a $1200 monthly rent payment.

Langford paid for utilities such as cable, internet, power and phone bills at each residence. Mayoral runner-up, Patrick Cooper, lost his challenge to Langford's eligibility to run for mayor after Langford won in 2007.

Langford's attorney, Mike Rasmussen, confirmed the information filed today, and the executive director of the Alabama League of Municipalities says any elected official is eligible to run as long as their legal residence is inside city limits. So what determines a legal residence?

"The courts have also said over the years that the determining factor in which one is the official legal residence of the individual is the determination of that individual," Perry Roquemore, the Alabama League of Municipalities' Executive Director. "That individual determines what site is their legal residence, and that's generally how that question has been answered."

Including credit card bills, clothing store credit accounts, car and other loans, Langford's monthly debts as of July 2009 are listed as $12,189. His monthly income from his job at Birmingham Budweiser and his salary as mayor is listed at $11,360, a difference of $829.

Langford now must forfeit more than $241,000 as part of last week's verdict. Court-appointed attorney Rasmussen told FOX6 News Monday he plans to continue representing the former mayor through the appeals process.

Attorney Glennon Threatt represented Langford on a pro bono basis. Threatt said last week he plans to continue representing Langford.