Tag Archives: james bulger

Whitey Bulger Laid to Rest


Yesterday was the funeral for convicted gangster James “Whitey”. Bulger, a notorious leader in Boston area organized crime gained even more notoriety when he hid out for decades while sitting atop the most wanted lists. When they finally caught up to him, Bulger claimed immunity from prosecution as he had been cooperating with government investigators. That defense didn’t work, and Bulger was sent away to prison. He was murdered last week the very day he was transferred to a new facility, bringing to a close a dark chapter in Boston history.

Bulger was played by Johnny Depp in the biopic “Black Mass”, and influenced other stories, such as Martin Scorsese’s  award-winning “The Departed”.

Whitey Bulger Guilty on Most Counts

James “Whitey”Bulger has been found guilty of most of the charges against him, including racketeering and many of the underlying murder and extortion charges. No word on whether the jury believed he was “snitchin’“.


James “Whitey” Bulger Wants to Argue Immunity at his Trial

James "Whitey" Bulger

James “Whitey” Bulger

Alleged mob-head James “Whitey” Bulger has claimed that a Federal prosecutor had given him immunity from prosecution (though, not for the murder charges among his indictments). Federal prosecutors object to him even being allowed to raise this defense. Their request to deny the defense is set for a hearing today, to decide the issue prior to the case going to trial.

Generally, if there is evidence to support a defense, it is proper for the jury to be allowed to consider it, and for jury instructions to include it. That is, it is up to the jury to decide the ultimate issues at trial. The prosecutors say the claim is “frivious and absurd”, and that the jury shouldn’t even have to consider it, but if there is evidence it should be up for the jury to weigh that evidence. At an earlier hearing, another judge did find that there was tacit approval given for Bulger and his associate to commit some crimes. That suggests there is the modicum of evidence that would create a jury question. The judge may take some time to consider the issue before he rules.

In other Whitey Bulger news, Johnny Depp is going to play him in a movie adaptation, and Ben Affleck is working on another from a Dennis Lehane novel. (Which is basically going to rehash the Frank Costello character from the Departed.) Gawker.com has a great takedown of the overabundance of Boston mob movies.