Michael Vick is expected to plead guilty in court today.
But Vick may be expected to finger top dog fighters as part of his plea agreement with prosecutors, say several former US prosecutors.
“It’s to the benefit of the defendant, as well as the government, for the defendant to provide quality information. The government is typically looking for information they don’t currently have to provide prosecution of somebody else,” Hunter W. Sims Jr., an attorney with Kaufman & Canoles, a Norfolk law firm.
Sims also said prosecutors will not be interested in more information on Vick’s co-defendants. They want to know about other high-profile individuals that are involved.
Another former federal prosecutor, Roscoe C. Howard Jr., believes that Vick’s attorneys are preparing him to volunteer information. His attorneys may even verify information and provide phone records.
“Regardless of what the government says, they want to be able to say, ‘Listen, Mr. Vick - prominent NFL player - has pointed out people in other states,’” Howard said. “He’s well on his way to being able to show to (federal) Judge (Henry) Hudson (who’s overseeing Vick’s case) that he is trying to help eradicate a very harmful, heinous gambling operation. You want to be able to put Judge Hudson in a bind and make him say, ‘You’ve done something horrible, but you’ve done something good.’ ”
If Vick does cooperate fully, prosecutors can make a motion for him to serve a shorter prison sentence. Federal sentencing guidelines and a background check are also factors. But the final verdict is in the hands of the judge.
In other Vick-related news, Vick’s mother has come out and spoken in support of her son.
Brenda Vick said she needs to be strong for her son. She added: “It is tough on everybody. They are trying to put my baby in jail, and for what? He has given his life over to God. He is not a criminal, he’s a good person. He has a big heart, and it just hurts.”