Birmginham Mayor William Bell has submitted a letter for early release for former mayor Larry Langford. The letter, submitted to President Donald Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Thursday asks for compassionate release from federal prison due to his chronic health issues.
Langford is serving time following his 2009 conviction for bribery where he took an estimated $235,000 from an investment banker while he serving as Jefferson County commissioner in return for millions of bond work. He and Bell have been friends since childhood, where they played Little League together. Both went on to attend UAB.
“We’ve been friends through the years,” said Bell. “But this has nothing to do with friendship.”
According to the letter, Langford, who is 70 years old, has served over 50 percent of his 157 month and 26 day sentence. Bell says Langford has several chronic health issues and deserves to come home to be in the care of his family and loved ones.
“The idea of a compassionate release was established for this reason,” said Bell in the letter. “I ask that you please seriously consider Mayor Langford’s release at this time and allow him the privilege of spending time in the care of his family and loved ones.”
Bell previously made the same request of President Barack Obama in November 2016.
Read the full letter below: