tv Whitey United States of America v. James J. Bulger CNN September 20, 2014 6:00pm-8:01pm PDT
they hired us to kill you. >> i didn't know what to think. i was dumbfounded. he said what we're going to do, instead of that, we're going to become your partner. no, you're not becoming my partners. and then bulger is just staring at me. and just grinding his teeth, like, you don't understand. we're taking the liquor store. i said it's not for sale. he said i'll kill you. i'll stab you and then i'll kill you. and i'm, like, holy jesus. and then they pulled out a gun. i was, like, oh. they picked up my kid.
it would be terrible for this kid to grow up without a father. and i melted. nothing you can do. ever since that day, i've never been the same. i couldn't protect my own children. as a man, that just took me away. and i'm not over it yet. i won't be over and maybe i'll never get over it. but i sure can't wait to get in that court and testify. 30 years ago, he scared me to death. he don't scare me to death no more. >> after 16 years, the f.b.i. finally had its man. james "whitey" bulger. the 83-year-old is accused of drug trafficking, extortion, and murder all as working for the f. pitch i. as an informant. >> i never did a crime in 16
years. my whole life changed when i turned and become very, very human, i guess. i loved the woman intensely. when i was captured, i told them, i said you people, i'll go on and plead guilty to all crimings. any crime. innocent or guilty, you can execute me, you can give me life sentence, you can do whatever you want. but i want you to be free. and i meant it. and i mean it today. if they said to me plead guilty and we'll let her go free and shut your mouth, i would do it. >> elgts's been a long time coming. after 16 years on the lamb and still in custody, the criminal
trial of james "whitay" bulger began today. >> this is what it looked like this morning. behind the tinted windows, back in boston to face 19 charges of murder in the same city he's accused of terrorizing as a gang boss. >> i'll see yas when i get out. >> how are you going to feel when you get in there? >> i can only imagine. sick to my stomach, i imagine. >> a boss of a man so dangerous that he joined osama bin laden
at the top of the f.b.i.'s most wanted list. >> you have people who are being distorted, shot gun barrels stuffed in their mouths. >> it was absolute terror. >> back then, '70s, '80s, didn't come home. he's a dead man. they're never going to find him. michael, dead. they were all involved in this circle in south boston. >> you have a fascination chlts this elusive, houdini-like crime boss with his younger brother, bill bulger was senate president.
all of this stuff that made him seem beyond the reach of law enforcement. >> there were over 25 years where james bulger moved the organized crime wrorld. he was never charged with even a misdemeanor. the department of justice did nothing to prosecute him. >> today is huge. i mean, you think that there's so many people who never thought this day would ever happen. >> james "whitay" bulger fled boston in 1994. >> now, he'll face justice in the same city. many say he ran with an iron fist.
>> i'll be honest with you. i have today's date, june 12th. but, lately, i couldn't -- past few days, i couldn't tell you what -- and it's the god's truth, i couldn't tell you if it was sunday, monday, friday. my head has been so twisted over all of this. it's sur real. it's happening. >> whitey killed my sister. she was looked upon as a good person. she come in the room and she'd light it up.
the only comfort i get through this is talking with him. >> that's why we meet every morning. a psychotic individual. we're going to bring justice. it has to be done. >> as nervous as i am, i can't believe i'm finally here. >> what are you going to be thinking? >> 30 years ago, i'd never look at him. now, i'd look him right in the eyes.
>> he did the dirtywork himself because he was a hands-on killer. bulger was deeply involved in the distribution of drugs. was one of the biggest informants in boston. he routinely met with f.b.i. agent john calling to protect himself and get the competitive edge that he wanted. they described victims, former friends, associates all killed and buried in secret graves. some relatives in court listening, choked up when they heard that.
>> wech to prove at least two of them. bulger is charged with 33 separate crimes. multiple extortions, drug dealing and of those, we have to prove at least two beyond a reasonable doubt. >> these crimes are what he did. >> he tried to paint a picture turned government witnesses, as a real murderer who just pinned their crimes on his cliernt. >> the defense said all three
witness's testimony were purchased by sparing them the death penalty, cutting their prison sentence. >> given their character, woulgd you believe them beyond a reasonable doubt? >> he denied that bulger was an informant. >> the evidence will show he was never an informant. you'll learn the depth of corruption in federal law enforcement that existed during this period. >> what makes this trial extraordinary, the defense is an assertion that he was an informant. the government has gotten sucked into this, as well. they're trying to prove that he is, even though it's totally irrelevant to his guilt or
innocence: it's about his legacy. of wanting to establish he wasn't a tout, a rat, informant, whatever you want to call it. >> i was surprised as anyone. >> i believe the reason that they have given so much protection to bulger, transported from the jail to the courthouse, 1 they're worried about someone with a sniper rifle taking him out on the way to court so that he can't testify. that's how explosive his testimony will be. want to change the world? blavng blank
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h murder e murdered people there. that's his world. >> i spengt much of my childhood in south boston. and, even as a kid, i knew whifey bulger ran the show. whitey was very lucky. in the 1960s, it was an irish gang war and over 60 people were killed. he missed all the of that. he was in prison. he h would have had a high, high chance of being a victim of that violence.
when he went to prison, he went to howie winter, preeminent non-mafia gang. and he said we've got to stop the war in southy. we're losing money. howie was very impressed by whitey. one of the things that impressed him the most, he had done time in alcatraz. he said whitey came across as a guy that could be a leader. so he alleviates the end of the war with a rival game called the monks in which they prevail. they 'about to get the lion's share of everything and how they were thrown for a loop.
the mullens guys were saying are you kidding me? he was a member and said we should have killed whitey when we had a chance. this is going to come back to bite us. >> southy was great growing up. everyone knew everyone. it was great. >> this was a neighborhood bar. it was kind of a rough bar. >> jim was like an older brother.
>> then i knew i was in and there was no getting out. i said if i'm going to do this, i'm going to do it right. i'm going to be the best at it that i can. >> james whiteybulger an the man who was like a son to him, kevin weeks. weeks was one of the government's star eyewitnesss. >> he calmly and coldly testified that he watched bulger
murder. >> jim bulger stepped up with the machine gun and chains and said i'm jim bulger and shot him in the back of the head. jim bulger said do you want one in the head? the kid said yes and he shot him in the head. steve says he's not dead. he wraps a cord on him. she's dead on the basement floor. >> as the defense began cross examining the foorm former bulger proet jay, he looked annoyed. >> so when you said you've never lied to the investigators, that was a lie. >> i've been lying my whole life. i'm a criminal. i'm mom at the playground and the dog park.
this is where whitey used to take his walks and meet with people. that never should have happened. it's just crazy. it's crazy. >> i was in organized crime for most of my career. so i saw bulger going up the chain. bulger and funny moved up into control. in 1980, a young trooper working for me was assigned to go down and check out this garage down on the north end to see about a possible stolen car ring. when he went by, he noticed a lot of organized crime figures there. he called me, i went down, observed for myself and that's when we started this investigation. >> the garage was right up here just a little after the truck
here. >> we commandeered an apartment across the street and we monitored for about four months. every day. and there we saw james bulger. and steven flemming. >> anybody who was anybody in organized crime in new england came here to this garage. people paying rent, protection money, people who were in the -- let's see. >> so they were meeting daily with the leaders of the new england mafia. and then it was unprecedented to see that. it was absolutely shocking to see that they were actually working together. >> that was, like, striking gold. >> what surprised me, i say where's the boston police? where's the f.b.i.? why isn't anybody else doing this? they're right here? they're operating so openly, it was just shocking. >> and we monitored that. documented. and we've got enough probable cause to go to a judge and issue
a warnt so that we can place listening devices inside. and we planted the bug. it worked great. everything was fine. next morning, one of the first conversations we picked up was what a great job the state police and the mass. turnpike do. we knew the gig was upright then and there. >> somebody was protecting them. we knew, but we just couldn't figure out how. one night, john morris of the f.b.i. met a boston detective. he was in a drunken state and drove the boston detective and said i know you guys are working with the state on a wire and the bad guys know about it. i couldn't believe it. i was anybody outside of our group know? >> it didn't make sense.
>> james whitey bulger will be the focus of testimony this morning. head of the f.b.i.'s organized crime squad during the're 78 os and're 80s overseeing john connolly. >> he and john connolly shielded james bulger from pros kugsz. federal prosecutors plan to discuss james bulger's 700 page f.b.i. informant file. >> to understand the bulger story, you really are to understand how the f.b.i. topped informant program came into being to detroy the italian mafia.
>> he came forward and described the hierarchies in new york. >> what is the name of this cosa nostra in italian? >> cosa nostra in italian. >> the first time one of these mafia guys talking into a television camera. and it was a big deal. it stole hoover's thunder. hoover, for decades now, had been denying that there was a mafia. now hoover had a problem. he needed to go out and get his informants. >> we should all be concerned for the eradication of crime. the federal bureau of investigation is as close to you as your nearest telephone. it seeks to be your protector within all mounds of its jursz diction. >> the informant program also was what gave power to guys like john connolly. how are you going to get guys like velaci?
you're going to need f.b.i. guy who is walk the walk and talk the talk. who can go out into that underworld and sort of make deals with these guys. the power and influence went way up. >> the general topic of our discussion today is informant handling. and with me today is john connolly, a 15-year veteran of the f.b.i. how do you go act developing individuals for recruitment? or targeting as an informant for the bureau. >> in the case of organized-crime time people, you wouldn't want to target a boss, for instance. you'd want someone close to the leflg of criminal activity.
so john connolly succeeded in forging what has since been called an unholy alliance with whitey bulger. >> you've going to get friendly with them and you're going to like them. but you never can forget who you work for. >> hi, mr. bulger is on the phone? >> all right, yes, put him through. thanks for calling. there were a couple of things i wanted to ask you about. the first is, you told me, since the very first day i met you,
that you've never been an informant. >> thaekt. >> does that mean you've never been an informant in your entire life? >> never. as a teenager, i took many beatings in police stations, i never cracked. as a bank robber, i pled guilty to free the girl that i was with, i got a 20-year sentence, first o fnder. in prison, i was part of an escape plot, the plot fell apart. one of the guys gave them my name, i said i don't know what you ooir talking about. i spent months 234 the whole. i went through a lot there. and after four months of punishment, they sent me to alcatraz. and that was it. i never, ever cracked. boston f.b.i.? no way. shawn connolly, irish catholic like myself, you know, friendship, if i ever hear anything, i'll tip you off and give you a heads up. and then i said all right, john, i'll see you. you can let me know, i'll
this is a typical, criminal trial. james bulger knows that by following the strategy, he's directed us to do. he will be found guilty and he's going to die behind the walls of a prison. but, for jim, it doesn't matter. he's at the end of his life. he doesn't know if he'll live until the end of the trial, never mind until the end of the year. but, for him, it's his last opportunity to tell people that he was never an informant.
that our federal government is more corrupt in law enforcement than anyone ever imagined, even to this day in this trial. it's corrupt. and he wants to people to know it. >> twl's a lot of thing thing that is we need to dispel. the fact that jim wasn't an informant. the fact that local banking was an informant. until you actually go through everything and look at it to make your own independent assessment, you can't have an opinion. so getting involved in this case, i had an opportunity that i don't think anybody in the public does, i get to see the files that the government had to suggest that he was an informant. i thought that there was some things about the file that were so suspicious that i wanted to look into in-depth. so i saturday down with daryl and i asked her to come up with an independent assessment. >> of course, i was eager to start the project and see what i could find.
but i was also a bit skeptical. just looking at the file, i thought how could that possibly be if i can ishs. fictitious. strangely, i found a lot of repetition in the file. there was tabs on every page where i found alternate sources. and we learned john connolly was pilfering through files and took specific information from these sources and placed it into mr. bulger's file. news art kals, public information, f.b.i. memorandums and the majority comes from other files. a top echelon file is supposed to be filled with singular, unique information that can lead to a prosecution. and just based on the patterns that i found, it's just not consistent with someone who was providing unique information. like this first page of his file, from may 29th, 1981.
the tip reads that 1544 advises that the mafia whacked out a guy several weeks ago. he's in the trunk of a car. it doesn't say what guy was whacked out, there's no sub sell subsequent information and no follow up. you turn to the last page, june 8th of that same year, the same exact tip shows up. 1544 advices, source heard that the outfit whacked out a guy several weeks ago and left the individual in the trunk. it's vague. there's no details and it shows up twice in this file. >> this is not unusual to see reports in one informant's file that's similar to reports in other informant's file. if a crime occurs, the law enforcement agency surveys their informants. they get multiple reports about the same criminal activity. that's exactly what connolly was doing with bulger.
>> the federal government is so december pratt in this trial to try to convince people that he's an informant. because james bulger had such a strong and influential rep ewe tagsz, his name had value. as a commodity for the department of justice. they needed search warrants to take down the mafia. they needed to put something down to justify intrusions into people's civil liberties. nobody was going to look and see if the information was verified. no one was going to determine whether it was made up by a street agent. no one was going to determine whether it was true or not guilty. and there was skpampl after example in this case where they took james bulger's name and used it as a commodity. >> it's a preposterous assertion that he was note an f.b.i. informant. in fact, he used the f.b.i. and they used him. what this is all about, quiet frankly, is he doesn't
mind being called a murderer. he doesn't mind being called a criminal. obviously, he doesn't mind being called a drug dealer, but he doesn't want to be called an informant. where he came from, in southie, that's the worst thing you can be. you can be a crook. you can be a murderer. but it's worst to be an informant. that's the way he's braugts up. in his sick mind, that's what he believes. who's going to make it happen? discover a new energy source. turn ocean waves into power. design cars that capture their emissions.
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remember the day when hank and i were with you and showed you the so-called informant file that john connolly had been keeping? >> yes. >> remember your reaction to seeing that? >> i was shocked. i was angry. i considered it the worst betrayal that ever happen today me in my life. i couldn't believe that anyone could even dream of such a thing. i never knew it existed. >> did you recognize the information that was contained in it as anything that you had ever talked to john connolly about? >> no, i asked questions. i got the answers. i was the guy who did the direct. they didn't direct me. >> what were some of the things they would give you in terms of tips. >> the things that is we needed most, number one, was wiretaps. and then, like, photo surveillance, search warrants when they were coming, indictments when they were coming so guys could get a chance to make a run for it. >> if you weren't providing information to these people, why were they willing to give you
all of this information. >> for money. money. money is the common denominator. it's the way of doing business. it happens all of the time. it will never stop. >> i remember you told me once that christmas is for kids and cops. how many people would you be paying off on a holiday period? >> oh, everybody i knew i took care of at christmas time. put money in envelopes for all the different police. i had contacts on the state police, the boston police, the a.t.f., also, and the f.b.i. there was more people than john connolly, but i'm not going to say who they were. i would never say anybody's name. but i took care of everybody. >> and was this in cash? >> always cash. always cash. i never handed anyone money. i handed them an envelope. it a makes them a little bit easier for them to accept it. or i'd put the money in a box, if it was that much money. >> whavs the most amount of money you ever paid an f.b.i. agent? >> at one time? >> yeah.
>> i don't know, maybe $25,000. $50,000. >> herb can be corrupted. people have the opinion that the f.b.i. is above reproach. well, they're just regular people. they put their pants on in the morning just like everybody else. they're regular people. kpe except they have a badge that says special agent. but there's nothing special about them. they're regular people. you can corrupt them. maybe they'll like money. wine, jewelry. trips, whatever. there's always a way to corrupt somebody. >> during a rapid fire and sometimes the intense cross-examination, disgraced former f.b.i. organizer admitted taking thousands in cash from bulger. >> that's not correct. he gave me money, but i was not his paid informant.
>> did you throw it away? >> no, i kept it. >> seeing a day like today where it's not clear. you see thoroughly, dispickblely corrupt f.b.i. agents like john morris, supervisor. just a moral -- i mean, he was a moral cow ard. and you see him and you see connolly taking advantage of him in all of his weakness to bring him in to the group. and you see that. and you see what was allowed. so the real story here is our government enabled the killers to run free in this city. bulger used to wake up in south boston. he could look across and say i owned that town. and he really did. he owned it because he was allowed to turn the federal bureau of investigation into the bulger bureau of investigation. he put his tentacles into the
bureau and he turned it into something that will work for him. it was because they were all crazed about getting the mafia that they enabled the irish god father to run the show hereby. and he was far more dangerous than the italians. . >> so what we need to do is get inside a lit m bit and talk about how the f.b.i. works and what the roles of certain people like mr. connolly and mr. morris. and the more we can keep you on the stand, from my perspective, the bet ere. we will be able to illustrate the efforts that you made and see the good side of law enforcement. you recognize that there's a problem and try to do something to save lives. they shut you down. >> can i be candid with you? >> absolutely. >> i think the whole thing is a con. i think at some point, they got in over their heads. and their success was wrapped around bulger to the point where
he had to be value dated. he had to be made into this informant that gave him all this information. that's the myth. i had a fascinating career. i worked organized crime. i i worked fugitives. so when the boston problem was going on, i was told they needed somebody with this background to be sent to boston. and my mission was to find out what is going on between the mass state police, the boston police, the local police, and the fbi, and how come they're not getting along together. they had territorial issues. the state police was blaming the fbi for cavorting with criminals because they had seen connolly and morris with bulger and flemy. so they formed the opinion that the agents were doing something bad. well, as it turned out, they
were. but they didn't know it then and i didn't know it then. so i go out and interview bulger and assess him. suitability, if you will. i arrive at bulger's place. and met at the door by bulger. he's got a baseball cap on. he's got sunglasses. he's got a muscle shirt. i hold out my paw, my hand. and he doesn't take it. okay. you know. so i look at my empty hand and i follow him in. the place is dark. and we walk in the back. i say look, bulger, i'm here to find out what you're doing for us. what are you doing for us? and he gets angry. and about that time connolly pops out. this is supposed to be mano a mano, one on one. and i get very angry. and i look over, and he says hi, fitzy, how are you doing? and i'm saying to myself, oh. you know, this does not look
good. but then we have the conversation about him. i finally get the conversation back. and what he tells me is that he's not an informer. that he has his own informants and he pays them. they don't pay him. and that he's the head of a gang and that he runs the gang. he's not going to testify. now, all those elements are elements to me that i'm going to close this guy as an informant. if you're an informant for the fbi and you're the head of the gang, then the fbi is validating the gang. you're actually part of the gang and the management process. so to me he's a big problem. close him. get rid of him. and that's what i go back and tell my boss. from that point on i get resistance. i'm more or less told you shut up. you're not allowed to talk about this. ...which eyes? eyes that pivot with the road...
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i was a very young reporter. covering this huge mafia trial in boston. it was the biggest ever. it was the fbi had planted a bug in the north end headquarters of a guy named jerry anjulo. he was the underboss of the mafia. and ran everything in boston. and he and his brothers, the whole hierarchy went on trial. it was an eight-month trial. and there was all this evidence of murders and corruption. and they had tapes of jerry
angiulo bragging about murders. but they also had him talking about i have a couple of guys that will do anything for us named whitey and stevie. they'll kill anyone we ask them to. so at the end of that trial it was a huge victory for the nba in bost fbi in boston. they had just wiped out the mob in boston. >> yesterday they returned a 20-count indictment charging seven individuals including gennaro angiulo. >> the boston fbi were heroes and john connolly was at the heart of that. he was the guy with the most informants, the most top echelon informants. so as the mafia is being decimated, stepping into the vacuum are whitey bulger and steve flemmi. and i'm asking the new england strike force leader jerry o'sullivan, why aren't you going after whitey and stevie? you've already done the mafia repeatedly. what about these guys?
and the answer is oh, well, they're not the threat that the mafia is. the mafia is an international organization. whitey's this local hoodlum. we're the new england organized crime strike force. we go after the big guys. well, whitey was becoming the big fish. >> jim bulger wants to explain to the jury why for 25 years he could be on top of the organized crime pyramid in boston and never once be charged with a crime. the chief of the organized crime strike force, jeremiah o'sullivan, promised him that he would not be prosecuted for any federal crime if in turn he did something that the government wanted. and that something was not being an informant. it was something else. we've never revealed that information. but jim will at trial.
if jim takes the stand. >> i had met secretly with a high official in the federal strike force, jerry o'sullivan, united states attorney. he was concerned that someone was going to kill him. he says he's in trouble, he needs help. i felt bad for him. so i told him, i says look, i'll take care of this for you. but i'm no spy. we don't meet. i'll take care of it in my own way. if you can accept that, it will be done. >> what was o'sullivan's promise to you? >> his promise to me was this. he says listen, whitey. he says, i feel better. i'm under your umbrella of protection. you're under mine. he says any federal crimes or anything like that, don't worry about it. he says, i'll always be in your corner from this point on. i'll protect you. you protect me. and that was the way it went. >> bulger claims that he had saved jeremiah t. o'sullivan
from imminent danger, presumably from mafia retaliation for jeremiah o'sullivan's pursuit of the mafia and bringing it down. and that his deal with jeremiah t. o'sullivan was a personal one and he was going to protect o'sullivan in return for being granted immunity for crimes past and future. >> john connolly said o'sullivan and bulger pledged allegiance to each other. that's a pretty significant event. an event, by the way, that was never mentioned or even alluded to in this trial. the government didn't want it to be. because then you would have this very ironic situation of the u.s. attorney's office in boston, the very office that is currently prosecuting whitey bulger, had some kind of corrupt relationship with whitey bulger. that they're not being totally forthcoming about. >> the notion that a federal
prosecutor could tell an organized crime figure that he could kill at will, men and women, rich and poor, boston, florida, oklahoma, based on a personal promise to guarantee his safety is so absurd, so ludicrous we've run out of words like ludicrous and synonyms to describe it. >> today they called to the stand former number 2 in the fbi's boston office, agent bob fitzpatrick. >> kind of upset over the fact that this whole case is predicated on, you know, a bunch of people i tried to put in jail. and the true story is that the criminal justice system has basically been co-opted by bulger, by flemmi. now, certain people are culpable in the fbi, but certain people are culpable in the department of justice. so i've got to go there and present the truth. >> former fbi agent robert
fitzpatrick started at the boston office in 1981 and said the atmosphere was tense. as assistant special agent in charge fitzpatrick evaluated james bulger's role as an informant. fitzpatrick said bulger surprised him by saying he was not an fbi informant, that he was never paid anything by the fbi to provide information. fitzpatrick recommended closing bulger as an informant but the headquarters thought bulger was too valuable in its quest do bring down the mafia. after several hours on the stand prosecutors began a tough examination of fitzpatrick. first question -- >> you're a man who likes to make up stories, aren't you in no. didn't you gratuitously take credit for arresting mob boss angiulo in. >> i did arrest him. >> at with unpoint he said are you on medication? fitzpatrick said yes. kelly said sarcastically, does it affect your memory? not that i recall, replied fitzpatrick, and several people in court laughed. >> how do you think you were treated on the stand? >> not good. >> what do you mean? >> i thought the guy was very
angry. and i don't know why. he used -- he should have been a lot more professional. >> bob fitzpatrick was one of the first people to say there's something rotten here and to try to call attention to it. he's drummed out of the fbi. now here he is at this trial. and they really seek to destroy him. they seek to humiliate him. and it was very personal because when he comes in to trial to testify he is a rebuke to the entire system and to everyone who stood back for 20 years that bulger was in power and allowed it to happen. and a lot of people were complicit in that. design safer cars. faster computers. smarter grids and smarter phones. think up new ways to produce energy. be an engineer. solve problems the world needs solved. what are you waiting for? changing the world is part of the job description.
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we know that there was a relationship between the department of justice and the success of james bulger. and nobody wants to tell that story. >> they protected him for their own reasons for decades, and they're still lying about it. and this trial the united states attorney's office has an exhibit. it's a very important exhibit. it is a memorandum from the special agent in charge in the 1980s by the name of lawrence sarhat. he says he had a conversation with james bulger when they met at a hotel. and the government pretends this memorandum somehow shows james bulger is an informant. so during the trial we learn information there's a secret safe in the boston s.a.c.'s, special agent in charge's office, in the c-3 unit of the fbi, the criminal division. and in that safe supposedly documents would go into and never come out again.
we also learned that there was a secretary who had worked for decades in the boston fbi. she's 82 years old and still working for the boston fbi. so she is the person who knows whether or not a secret safe exists. when we called this secretary as a witness, mysteriously new documents appeared. while they told the jury and the public this is the truth. >> at this trial. >> at this trial. what we learned when we called the secretary is there were other documents that existed. the same exact memo that the government introduced at this trial from the same person, an exact copy of it, we learned that the memo was not complete. because there's an observation section. mr. sarhatt says "i am not certain i am convinced the informant is telling the full
story of his involvement. consideration should be given to closing him and making him a target." so what did they do with this information? the government at this trial leaves that part out until we expose it. what else do they do with the information back in 1980? well, we had learned from the secretary exactly what they did with that information. the actual memorandum that was given to her she put in an envelope by direction of mr. sarhatt and put in the safe and it says strictly eyes only. nobody other than the special agent in charge should see it. and anytime a new special agent in charge would come in and take the place of an old one who's resigning or moving on, she would tell them about this document and the safe. and it stayed in that safe for generations of special agents in charge when they took each other's spot. and one special agent in charge said get rid of it or we'll all get fired. what could be so terrible about
this document that they would lose their job? that james bulger was an informant in would that be so terrible, they would get fired? or they knew he wasn't an informant, they knew he should have been targeted, and he was being protected. >> the defense complaining about the sarhatt memo is another desperate topic by them which is another version of let's pretend. because they are pretending they didn't have these documents, which they did. there's nothing sinister about it. they had it. and it didn't prove anything other than there was a head of the fbi who was concerned about keeping bulger open as an informant. if anything, the sarhatt memo proves bulger was an informant. he sat with the head of the boston fbi for four hours and gave him all sorts of information, most of which was useless, but in fact he was reporting it to the fbi. and that makes him an informant.
>> the latest twist in the trial of james whitey bulger. >> on tuesday steven rakes was dropped from the witness list. >> rakes had been sent to testify but prosecutors told him he was no longer needed to take the stand. >> 30 years of torment and now it's coming to an end. [ phone ringing ] >> hello. no. i haven't been able to -- i'm going by his house later because i haven't been able to get a hold of him or anything. yeah. he's probably beside himself about it. they took him off the witness list. i tried calling him after court, and his phone went right to voicemail. i call him all day yesterday, same -- after court. same thing. so i'm going to go over. i figure give him a little time to cool down. yeah.
yeah. where? i don't know. where was the body described like? >> [ inaudible ]. >> that's him. that's him. mother. i'm going by his house right now. yeah, i'll call you right back. he's dead. >> dead? what? what? what happened? >> they found him on the side of the road in lincoln. >> in lincoln, massachusetts? >> yeah. >> who's in lincoln, massachusetts? >> i've got to go by his house right now. >> oh, my god. no way. >> steven rakes is a courthouse regular, coming each day to the whitey bulger trial. waiting for the day when he would testify. rakes would never get that chance. >> see the corruption? >> wait, let's not jump to conclusions. let's say a prayer he's okay. >> he's not here. >> is his car here, steven? >> no. >> oh, my god. can you go knock on the door and
see? >> i knew something was wrong because i talked to him every day. we'd meet for coffee. and that's got my stomach turned thinking is anyone else in danger? with his testimony. i used to say to him, steve, what do you have to say? what is it? "oh, you'll see. you'll see. believe me, you'll see how deep -- the people, you'll see." >> key witness in the whitey bulger trial is dead. >> a source tells cnn authorities call the death suspicious. >> we don't know what the cause of death was. no sign of trauma. don't know if this was a suicide. >> it's a very suspicious death. and the body is seven miles away from where his automobile was, and he did not have any identification on him. >> they'll probably say cause of death was a heart attack, an aneurysm. you know, and is it? we'll never really know. do you believe what they tell you or did something really happen? do you trust your people that are supposed to serve and protect when you know what we're
prosecutors put former hit man john martarano on the stand to prove that bulger's rein was murderous. >> martarano was perhaps the most feared member of bulger's winter hill gang. he was bulger's chief executioner. >> killing was routine. in all he murdered at least 20 people. >> martarano served just 12 years in prison as part of a deal with federal prosecutors.
>> the confessed murderer was asked about a number of killings he committed including the killer of walter wheeler, the president of world jai-alai in oklahoma. >> the highline murders are the heart of this because they she how ugly and sordid everything became. this is shocking. he's killed in daylight at a country club while kids at the swimming pool are watching. >> and who was roger wheeler? >> he was the owner of jai-alai, world jai-alai. it was a game. . >> did that game involve gambling? >> and he. >> i never liked gambling. but the bank of boston brought him this jai-alai deal. and part of the deal, he kept asking about this p he said the fbi keeps it clean, it's run by retired fbi agents that specialized in investigating organized crime and they keep the mob out. >> so wheeler buys this company world jai-alai. unbeknownst to him, it's
infiltrated to the mob already, connected to winter hill. >> the world jai-alai, john callahan, a friend of john martorano as a president. he they had h. paul rico head of security. and rico was a corrupt ex-fbi agent and he had relationships with winter hill. callahan is actually the architect who first brought the scheme forward with rico it kill wheeler and then go to his wid ore and buy it, buy the world jai-alai. they would be the owners. and the money was going to be kicked back to winter hill. paul rico reached out to the people back up here that he was involved with before. >> callahan asked me to take over roger wheeler. >> what was your reaction to that? >> i can't do that without everybody else on board. >> when you say you had to get everybody else on board, who did you mean? >> whitey and stevie. they said they were on board. whatever they could do to help they'd help. >> in the end of it joey martorano shot wheeler in the
head. >> there were honest fbi agents in oklahoma who wanted to get to the bottom of the murder of roger wheeler. whitey bulger and stevie flemmi were implicated and the fbi in boston lied to the fbi in oklahoma and said bulger and flemmi had nothing to do with it, they have alibis, we've checked it out. that was a lie, and murderers went free because of it. >> you hold the fbi as responsible as bulger for the death of your father? >> more responsible. the fbi has protected him. they have supervised him. and without the fbi my father would be alive today. >> next person that emerges in this story is brian halloran. halloran is facing his own problems. namely, he's charged with murdering a drug dealer. he needs help.
and to make a deal. so he comes forward and he couldn't give up whitey bulger and steve flemmi he says because they were part of a plot to kill roger wheeler. hal vann a threat to bulger and flemmi. they eliminate halloran. in the process of eliminating him they kill michael donahue. somebody he knew from the neighborhood. >> of the 19 alleged murder victims their loved ones have become fixtures at this trial. and today patricia donahue took the stand. >> all i want to do is clear my husband's name. i did not want him associated with the mafia, with whitey bulger, with brian halloran. you know, he wasn't into that. he didn't even know those people. he was innocent. he wasn't in trouble. he wasn't a mafia man. he wasn't a killer. mike was 32 when he died. he actually would have been 33 in a week.
whitey pulled the trigger, but i blame the fbi too. they knew what was going to happen. there goes whitey. that's funny, huh? >> i'm serious. there's whitey. >> yeah. >> we'll see new there, you lowlife. >> michael donahue was murdered simply because he offered a neighbor, brian halloran, a ride home. unbeknownst to michael donahue, brian halloran at the time was cooperating with the fbi and was about to reveal that james bulger was involved in the murder of roger wheeler. >> after the wheeler murder halloran comes in and he wants to talk. we open him up as an informant. and he begins telling us that this was done by bullier and flemmi. so i opened up murder cases on
bulger and flemmi. you have to understand. halloran is giving us the subject. he's telling us this guy is the killer of wheeler. bulger is the killer of wheeler. that's a plus. they should be very happy, they being the department of justice and the strike force chief, jerry o'sullivan. and yet they're not. o'sullivan said no, i'm not going to put halloran in the witness protection program. why not? so i went over sullivan's head. i went to the united states attorney, bill weld. and i said to bill weld, bill, i said we've got a problem. i've got an informant, halloran, that's going to tell us who did this stuff, and o'sullivan is feeling he should not be in the witness protection program. i told weld, he's going to get walked. >> at the same time john morris at the fbi told john connolly that brian halloran was revealing bulger's involvement.
and morris knew full well that john connolly would convey that information to whitey bulger. and he did. >> we received from the fbi that brian halloran was cooperating with the fbi about the wheeler murder. so jim bulger, steve fleming and myself and other people were looking for him. and one day we got news that brian halloran was down on the waterfront. >> michael donahue happened to have gone down to the pier in south boston to get fish to use as bait to take one of his sons on a fishing trip. and he stopped to have a beer on his way home. he ran into brian halloran, who was his neighbor. he offered to give him a ride home. >> so we went down to the waterfront. we got the hit car and weapons. and everyone -- he was geared up and stuff. and i went down ahead and sat across the street and watched to make sure brian halloran was in fact there. when he started coming out, i
told jim bullier, and jim bulger pulled up, he shot brian halloran and killed him. michael donahues with an unintended victim. he wasn't supposed to get kill. it was brian halloran we were going to kill. but he hang around with halloran. he hung around with gangsters and wise guys, this is what happens. >> patricia doneview has spent the last 32 years raising three sons without her husband michael. today she finally faced his alleged killer, james whitey bulger. >> it was mother's day and tommy had just naid his first communion. i was in the kitchen cooking pape news bulletin came on the tv with a gangland slaying. i didn't pay attention because i was cooking. i looked up and i saw his car. i said i think that's his car. i was hyperventilating, confused. i said oh, my god, i don't want him to die alone.
i have so much stuff i want to say to him. you know. and nobody came until 10:00 that night. so when they took me to the hospital finally, he had already passed. within days of the killing fbi agents came to my house and harassed me, accused me of having an affair with my husband's friend who was staying with us from out of town. i was like, what? for months they used to sit outside my salon. they'd sit outside the house and i'd say how are you doing? have you found out any more information on my husband? no. nothing yet. and the whole time they knew. and i was devastated because i did not think that the government was like that. you think you know them and you find out they're not who you think they are. >> bulger and flemmi are suspects. now not only in the wheeler murder but in the halloran and donovan murders. and nothing happens.
the fbi decides to look for don callahan. we need to question don callahan. he's another guy. they hunt for him to question him and then he's murdered. again, nothing happens. the fbi in boston, who do they send out to question bulger and flemmi? john connolly. their handler. because we know he's objective, right? he. >> the fbi, they haven't been on our side since the day they killed my father. took him 4 1/2 hours to cull to my house to tell my mother. my mother, whether my father was dead or alive, they covered up the murder of my father, helped pretty much set it up. it's shameful. i think the fbi is worse than the mafia. they're the most organized crime family on the planet, who can do whatever they want, changes the laws if they want, and they're not to be screwed with, to be honest with you. we've seen that firsthand.
>> what is it like to be on the stand today looking in whitey bulger's eyes? >> well, i looks right at him but of course he wouldn't look at me. so as far as i'm concerned he's a coward. he can kill people but not look the victims in the face. that's a coward. >> you say you've been getting more answers from his defense team than -- >> i am. >> then jay early came up and asked questions that were really meant for whitey. >> the questions carney was asking my mother, those are questions the government should be asking my mother. did you notice the government stood up and blocked every question. they don't want us to know everything. it was blunt. carney was asking questions and we were getting blocked by the prosecution. where do we go here, folks? thate their emissions. build bridges that fix themselves. get more clean water to everyone.
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in the early '90s, when fred and i first started working on this case, it was strange to us to say the least that bulger had been allowed to run amok in the city of boston for so long. >> we suspected bulger had some relationship with the fbi. that he was using to prevent prosecution of himself. it was in that atmosphere that we began the case and targeted him. and we worked with tom foley, also tom duffy from the state police. >> so what we decided to do was follow the money, and what we started targeting was a bottom line book maker. with some of the informants that we had we put up a bunch of wire taps and we started climbing up these book makers'
organizations. until we actually had the highest level where that book maker was doing the hand-off to bulger and flemmi as far as payments go. >> it took brian and i about four or five years to get there. by 1995 we had our first racketeering indictment. >> back then fred took a lot of hits over the years and he had the courage to go up against the system. brian kelly, too. there was many right inside the u.s. attorney's office that were in denial. didn't want to see this come forward. and they said well, we're going to wait and we'll do a joint investigation with the fbi. and i knew at that time that this was another stall tactic. and i told them, i said okay, that's the way you want to go. but the state police's position publicly will be you had the opportunity into diet him ato i you didn't indict him. they went into i huddle and they
said okay, we will indict him. but they insisted that the fbi participate in the arrest. so state police targeted flemmi. the fbi said they'll take bulger. and then one night on january 5th we found flemmi. and we arrested him on the streets of boston. and we notified the fbi, okay, grab bulger. and that was the end of that. they never had bulger, didn't know where he was. and it was 16 years later before we saw james "whitey" bulger again. we expected that he was tipped off, and we found out later that that's what actually had happened. one of the fbi agents in boston told john connolly that the indictments were coming down, and he he passed the information along to bulger.
after months of sitting in jail stephen flemmi realized the fbi and john connolly were not coming to his rescue, and he decided to out himself and bulger's fbi informants. >> did you have any idea that flemmi was an informant until he revealed it in a court hearing in 1999? >> i didn't know that stevie did that there. i had no idea. and when i heard it, i was shocked. i mean, stevie was like my brother. i was so close to him. he fooled me. he fooled the mafia. he fooled johnny. everybody. i mean, i was shocked. in the court he's glaring at me and i'm looking at him thinking, christ, stevie, you're looking at me, i never said a word against you. i'm the injured party. >> it was a tense reunion 18 years in the making. finally, james "whitey" bulger and his partner stephen "the rifle man" flemmi were reunited as flemmi took the stand against bulger --
>> stephen flemmi is considered to be the most critical witness in this case p. >> in rapid-fire succession flemmi described bulger's alleged role in a string of kilgds during the 1970s when both men were leaders of the winter hill gang. >> flemmi is under pressure. they're talking about women. bulger is charged with strangle debra husy and debbie davis. the defense is trying to suggest in fact it was flemmi. >> hank grilled the government on his sexual relationship with his then girlfriend's teenage daughter deborah hussey. >> she said deborah hussey turned into a drug user and an embarrassment so they had to kill her. >> at bulger's trial he said he killed his girlfriend deborah davis after the two men decided she knew too much. >> flemmi claims bulger decided davis had to be killed. "i couldn't do it," flemmi testified. he said bulger said i'll take care of it, i'll do it. he grabbed her around the throat and strangled her. >> my sister debbie, she dated
steve flemmi over nine years. she loved him. she did love him. at one point she wanted to get married. she wanted kids. my sister wanted kids. it was just rocky road from then on. she said i'm leaving, i'm leaving, steve. and i think whitey would have taken that as a threat. you know, her taking secrets or whatever with her. >> flemmi became more and more defensive and more and more resistant to the questions as hank brennan just cut into him. flemmi is a well-rehearsed witness now because he testified this three trials and three civil proceedings. in one court he says that bulger strangled her with a rope. in another proceeding he said he strangled her with his hands. and in a third proceeding he said he thought that bulger had her in a headlock. >> so at the end of the day the inconsistencies, yes, they're there, but do they stop bulger
from being convicted? it certainly does not look like that is significant enough to do that. >> two of the charges against you, jim-s that you were involved in the murder of deborah hussey and debbie davis. did you have any involvement in those two cases at all? >> no. those were stevie's girlfriends. that's his problem. had nothing to do with me. nothing. >> do you feel he was fully capable of committing these by himself? >> well, when one of the guys asked him something about a murder, he says, well, he's been involved in so many murders he has to say to the guy, show me the list. stevie needed a little to show him what murder you're talking about. i mean, this guy, i think he's insane myself, stevie. >> whitey bulger cannot have people thinking he murdered those two women. and he cannot have people think he was an informant. this is not about getting
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today could end up an extremely interesting day at the trial of james "whitey" bulger. the big question is whether or not whitey himself will take the stand. >> will james bulger take the stand snefsh's waiting on bated breath to find out. >> my prediction is he will testify. he looks so bad if he doesn't. >> today's a big day. it's the end of the case. and i want to let him know that i'm behind him no matter what decision he makes. if he wants to testify, then i'm 100% behind him. if he doesn't, then i totally understand as well. >> the defense was hoping to present a defense of immunity, that bulger had been given immunity by the former u.s. attorney but before the trial they got the answer from this judge that no, they couldn't. they were stripped of that defense. >> it's an interesting argument. but it is somewhat convenient to
make the argument because jeremiah t. o'sullivan is dead. and there is no written evidence that we've seen. >> in courtroom 11 a moment of high drama. whitey's lawyer stood up and said the defense rests. >> carney says bulger will not take the stand. >> when the judge asked if he made that choice voluntarily, he stunned everyone. >> i'm making the choice involuntarily, bulger said. >> because i feel that i've been choked off from having an opportunity to give an adequate defense and explain about my conversation and agreement with jeremiah o'sullivan. >> for my protection in return he promised to give me immunity. >> judge casper said she already ruled bulger's immunity claim was inadmissible 37 he said defiantly -- >> as far as i'm concerned i didn't get a fair trial and this is a sham. and do what yous want with me. that's it. that's my final word. >> at that point patricia
donahue rose from her seat and yelled "you're a coward." >> i yelled out, "you're a coward." because that's what he is. this man first claims that he has immunity, which he thinks give him the right to kill all these people. and now he blames an unfair trial on the department of justice. yet he won't get on the stand and tell all. if you think the government has done wrong by you, then get up there and talk about it. >> at the end of the day bulger's immunity claim was a ridiculous claim. when he was given the chance to present it, he didn't. his immunity claims were part of his game of let's pretend. let's pretend i'm going to testify. let's pretend i have a license to kill. let's pretend i'm not an informant. >> so many people have the
opinion that the idea of whether or not he was an informant is irrelevant. but that is a central issue in this case. >> the truth is james bulger is not an informant. and the reason it's important for the department of justice to recognize he wasn't an informant is if mr. julyger was just paying a dozen people on the fbi as he was and headquarters didn't do anything about it and supervision wasn't there and they didn't do the yearly reports, didn't did do the yearly vooiz it calls into questions all the aftds he's on, it calls into question all the convictions he's had. >> think about the implications. think about what happened in the 1980s. the crown jewel of the department of justice was to get the italian mafia. they wnt wanted to infiltrate t headquarters of the angiulos in the north end. they needed affidavits. what did they do? they used james bulger's name even though he didn't give them any information. their own witnesses will admit that. he was added on to search warrants and affidavits as a
courtesy to johnly. what happens when the federal government o'admits he wasn't on these search warrants? every mobster indicted by the federal would sue the federal government. they lose all the convictions, all the jail time, all the sentences. all these accolades that attorneys and lawyers and fbi agents earned. their reputations they earned would be gone. they're not going to give that up. and probably most importantly is the civil liability to the families. that's why you have this resounding unrest with the families. they've lost loved ones. and at some point there has to be closure. they are entitled to closure as citizens. this government will give them no closure because they have this pretense they have to keep to the image that james bulger is an informant rather than saying we sanctioned this, not just james bulger, we sanctioned organized crime figures to go out and kill and we protected them. we protected them. we did it before and we'll do it again. they can't admit that. so these families suffer over and over again with never
getting the answer. are they go to overturn convictions and let everybody go? are they going to be civilly liable for their lies? are they going to prosecute themselves? it's never going to happen. so he has to be an informant. >> prosecutors and defense attorneys for boston mobster james "whitey" bulger get their last chances today to try to persuade jurors in bulger's murder and racketeering trouble. david boeri joins us this morning. good morning. >> good morning, deb. >> now, both sides get three hours to sum up their cases. what are they going to do with all that time? >> an extraordinary amount of time. that's for sure. and as a matter of fact, the government said it needed more time. >> james bulger is one of the most vicious, violent, and calculating criminals ever to walk the streets of boston. it doesn't matter whether or not mr. bulger was an fbi informant.
it's about whether or not the defendant is guilty of the crimes charged in the indictment. he's the one on trial here, not the government, not the fbi. james bulger. >> we think about our government as this institution, this faceless organization. our government is not them. our government is us. at what point as citizens do we say you know what? there has to be accountability. you tell them that. >> i've been on this story for so long, and i never have seen such depravity in a courtroom. we have a situation where an institution of the government decided that in order to achieve a goal which was questionable at best, they decided who was going to live and they decided who was going to die. and they empowered those people that were carrying out terror, they empowered them. they gave them the run of the city. that was lawlessness by the
government. that is what we can never forget. and that's why -- that's why i'm proud to have done this story. it's something you can't forget. and memory is really important. memory is a political act. and i think as reporters you've got to keep the memory even if other people aren't. don't compromise.eat one, ai ok, how about 10 gigs of data to share, unlimited talk and text, and you can choose from 2 to 10 lines. wow, sounds like a great deal. so i'm getting exactly what i want, then? appears so. now, um, i'm not too sure what to do with my arms right now 'cause this is when i usually start throwing things. oh, that's terrifying at&t's best-ever pricing. 2-10 lines, 10 gigs of truly shareable data, unlimited talk and text, starting at $130 a month.
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♪ united states versus james j. bulger is over. >> this trial's been going on for two months. the jury's been deliberating the last five days. >> the jury has made a decision in this case, and we are waiting to see exactly what it is. >> whitey bulger faces possible maximum life in prison. we say it with a caveat. this man is 83 years of age. >> bulger is standing right now in the courtroom as he hears the words to count 1 for racketeering conspiracy. guilty. >> for count 2 we're just waiting here for word out of the courtroom. that it is a guilty verdict as well on count 2. >> now, within the second one were all of these acts. that includes all of the acts of murder. racketeering act number 1, that was not proven.
>> for racketeering act number 2 we're hearing that is not proved. racketeering act number 3, not proved. number 4, not proved. >> 5, not proved. >> now, distribution conspiracy. >> that is proved. >> the torsion of steven rakes and julie rakes. >> that is proved. >> the conspiracy to murder roger wheeler, proved. >> the murder of john callahan is also proved. >> next the murder of brian halloran, proved. >> then we have the murder of michael donahue. >> proved. >> the murder of deborah hussey. >> proved. >> the next one, very important for steven davis. the murder of debra davis. no finding. >> whitey bulger was convicted on 31 out of 32 counts of racketeering, conspiracy, murder, extortion, and other charges. >> but a jury found that the government only proved the murders of 11 of bulger's 19 alleged victims. >> let's just do the jury convicted bulger of -- it's 31. they acquitted him of one count.
>> as theater the trial delivered. but ultimately it was a disappointment to me. those of us journalists, interested parties who've been following the bulger story for decades had kind of hoped this trial was going to be a final accounting of the bulger era. of all the things that made bulger possible. i think it fell far short in that regard. >> with the conviction of james bulger we hope that we stand here today to mark the end of an era that was very ugly in boston's history. >> jesus christ almighty. this is baloney. and that's why i says this is a sham trial. i think the feds have the green light. nobody ever checks on them. the media's not there like they would like the public to believe they are. these reporters are hand-fed stuff from fbi agents and then they write crime stories. they write books and everything else. they're hand in fit with them. the one thing they all know is it works. it works.
it gets convictions. there's no lessons learned. you can't get a fair trial. you can't get a fair hearing. this system here, "ussnit isn'tg to change. it isn't going to change. it will never change. >> whitey bulger is a vicious, venal murderer. but he was enabled by the fbi. and the fbi was enabled by the justice department. and to this day the justice department as far as i'm concerned was engaged in a cover-up to minimize the extent of fbi corruption. >> to know that this is how you're treated as an american citizen when fbi agents protect killers and come and take your loved ones' life. you could be sitting here. don't you want to know what really went on? with they really did it. >> if everybody told the truth,
everything would come together. but everybody fashions things to benefit themselves, which is natural, i guess. but everybody's trying to twist the story a little bit. nobody's going to know the truth until everybody starts telling the truth. that's what it comes down to. people are going to have to come to their own conclusions. there's going to be people that believe jim bulger was an informant. he's going to have people on the other side who say he was not an informant. people are going to say he didn't murder women. other people will say he did murder women. so the true story will never be known. >> today was a good day for a lot of families, but today also wasn't a good day for a lot of families. my heart goes out to them, and i would like to do a cheers for them and we will not forget you. one person who should be here, how about we give a nice cheers to stevie rakes? [ applause ] >> yes, i hold the fbi responsible. good god. they protected this man. years later we find out everything that he's been doing and getting away with it?
back in 1981 i had the american dream, the beautiful wife, the house in the suburbs, and a beautiful 6-year-old son. and one day i went to work, kissed my son good-bye, and never saw him again. in two weeks i became the parent of a murdered child, and i'll always be the parent of a murdered child. i still have the heartache. i still have the rage. i waited years for justice. i know what it's like to be there waiting for some answers. and over those years i learned