§40: Judge Wolf’s Big Jump: [Re-Examining Whitey Bulger: The Learning Years]

Sometimes You Can't See What's Happening In Front Of You
Sometimes You Can’t See What’s Happening In Front Of You

Here’s where Judge Wolf seems to be dressing himself in sheep’s clothing attempting to disguise his lack of foundation for his inexplicable finding.

He started out saying “more specifically” and he moves on to note, “Morris testified the Miani matter was one of three instances in which he unsuccessfully attempted to exploit Bulger’s reputation for violence in an effort to get information for the FBI.”  We’re suppose to be comforted that he’s basing his finding that in 1975 “the FBI was well-aware that Bulger was widely regarded as brutally violent when Connolly sought his cooperation” not only on the suspect Miani incident mentioned yesterday but on two other circumstances that Morris testified about.

In footnote number 33 he refers to the other two: “Morris and Connolly told Buckey Barrett, in an effort to intimidate him, that Bulger and Flemmi would be seeking from him a share of the proceeds of the Medford Depositors Trust robbery, but that the FBI would protect him if he cooperated in its investigation of that crime. . . .  In the late 1980’s, an 11-year old girl, Sara Pryor, was kidnapped. A recently arrested individual from South Boston was suspected to be the kidnapper. . . . Morris, Connolly, and another agent, brought Bulger, who was then an informant, to the jail and suggested to the suspect that Bulger would deal with him if he did not confess.”

There is a real problem with using these incidents to support Whitey’s reputation in 1974 and 1975. The Medford Depositors Trust robbery happened in 1980 and Buckey Barrett was not murdered until 1983,  Sarah Pryor disappeared in October 1985.

These events could not have been incidents that Connolly knew in the mid-Seventies when he was trying to get Whitey’s assistance. Why is Wolf trying to support his conclusion by using matters that he had to know did not support it? The truth is that when Connolly recruited Whitey he was a little known hoodlum involved in strong-arm tactics in South Boston and who prior to his involvement with Steve Flemmi after May 1974 had never been involved in a murder.

As I mentioned previously, Wolf also has the Flemmi and Whitey relationship butt-end-backwards. He makes Whitey becoming an informant in 1975 as a happening which occurred before Flemmi became an informant. He does this  even though he knew from FBI records and Flemmi’s admissions that Flemmi had been an informant since the early 1960s. He also knew that the FBI helped get rid of two serious felony indictments, including murder, that were pending against Flemmi to bring him back to Boston to help it in its war against the Mafia.

The only explanation I can fathom is that Wolf fell for the Flemmi nonsense that he was being led around by the nose by Whitey. He then had to figure Whitey had this enormous reputation for a brutal man like Flemmi to come under his sway. Wolf failed to see what was happening in front of him in his courtroom.

Flemmi had admitted he’d been an FBI informant just about all through his criminal career. He was testifying in front of his co-defendants and buddies from the Roxbury gang days, John Martorano and Frankie Salemme. He did his best to shade his testimony to make himself look as naive and innocent as possible and make Whitey into some type of super criminal.

Wolf sucked it in hook, line and sinker. Why Wolf didn’t step back and see that when Connolly recruited Whitey he had no value to the FBI? His attempt to suggest Connolly knew more than he did about Whitey makes him incorporate incidents that occur far after the time of recruiting. He knew that basically Connolly was recruiting a bookie and loan shark.

All right we’ll give Wolf that Whitey was of a violent disposition. It still doesn’t make him of any value to the FBI. What then is it the FBI needed?

It’s Flemmi with his access to the Mafia. It has to keep Flemmi happy. Wolf couldn’t grasp the idea that Flemmi put in on the FBI: “You want me, you gotta take my partner.”

The gangsters in the court caught on. They were paying close attention to all that was happening. That’s how gangsters survive: know what’s happening around them and figure out how best to work it to their advantage.

They knew Whitey was Mr. Nobody back in 1975 but they also knew if Judge Wolf fell for the idea he was Mr. Big they’d do nothing to persuade him otherwise. John Martorano particularly figured two things: if Flemmi was a life-long informant he was weak, he couldn’t take the heat of prison and would probably start ratting on others to get himself a deal.  If he did, Martorano knew he’d be facing a death sentence.

He also saw the prosecutor lusted after Whitey more than Flemmi which is probably one reason Judge Wolf was led astray like a lost lamb. Martorano  knew he had to get a deal for himself and implicating Whitey was the key to freedom. Wolf’s inability to understand the gangster mind sprang Martorano even though he murdered 20 people. Wolf, aided by a smiling Martorano, using facts that did not support his conclusion made Whitey into a major villain before his time while impugning the integrity of FBI agent Connolly who recruited him.

18 thoughts on “§40: Judge Wolf’s Big Jump: [Re-Examining Whitey Bulger: The Learning Years]

  1. 6…My friend, state trooper Bob Cerra had a great editorial (guest columnist) in the Newton Tab this week. He argued, in part, that if the FEDS had shared more info with local police forces (state, city, town, college) those departments may have picked up additional information which would have heightened scrutiny on the Boston bombers and may have prevented the atrocious Mass Terrorist Attack (The Boston Bombing.)

  2. Matt: (1) I saw a photo of the three, and one looked like the younger brother (same skin coloration) of the guy I saw in Starbucks; (2) I agree that 99% of Muslims in the Boston area are good, decent, family people, hard working, community oriented. Lets not have witchunts! (3)I believe there’s a hard corps of radical jihadists killers on the East Coast who actively recruit (4) I hope the Boston, Watertown, Cambridge, M.I.T. and State police turn over every stone to get these murderous jihadists and their accomplices and abettors. (5) I read recently that the FBI was furious with the NYPD because NY sent their own detectives overseas (to Paris or Moscow?) to track down suspected terrorist links. (6). . .

  3. Every now and then a judge gets caught. It should be a lesson. This judge will have 28 years to reflect.

    “A judge known for his harsh and autocratic courtroom manner was jailed for 28 years for conspiring with private prisons to hand young offenders maximum sentences in return for kickbacks amounting to millions of dollars.

    “Mark Ciavarella Jnr was ordered to pay $1.2m (£770,000) in restitution after he was found to be a “figurehead” in the conspiracy that saw thousands of children unjustly punished in the name of profit in the case that became known as “kids for cash”.

    “The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has overturned some 4,000 convictions issued by the former Luzerne County judge between 2003 and 2008, claiming he violated the constitutional rights of the juveniles – including the right to legal counsel and the right to intelligently enter a plea. Ciavarella Jnr, 61, was tried and convicted of racketeering charges earlier this year but his lawyers had asked for a “reasonable” sentence, claiming that he had already been punished enough.”

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-judge-receives-28year-jail-term-for-his-role-in–kidsforcash-kickbacks-8598147.html

    1. Henry:
      I read about that case a while back. That was pretty egregious what that judge was doing. Kids with no records and minor crimes were being sent off to the juvenile lock ups for a long time while that judge was raking in money. 28 years was not enough for him the way he ruined so many young lives.

      I read about the recent arrest of the three 19 year old students who may have been involved with Tsarnaev after the fact. They were in court today. Speaking of judges who are harsh and autocratice Federal Magistrate Marianne Bowler seems to be taking on that role in her courtroom. She handled the pretrial hearings of Whitey and seemed to be all over JW Carney at times and somewhat out of temper. The Herald reported earlier today that: “Phillipos, who looked back at family members often, and was chided by Magistrate Judge Marianne Bowler: “I suggest you look at me instead of looking down.” [http://bostonherald.com/news_opinion/local_coverage/2013/05/feds_3_pals_hid_evidence_for_bombing_suspect]

      The kids 19 years old being charged in connection with the Marathon Terrorist Attack and she’s picking on him. Doesn’t sound too judicial to me.

  4. I take issue with your written statement that Whitey Bulger never did a murder before may 1974. how would you ever prove that ? The idea of anyone , even you, writing about events that may or may not have happened going on forty years ago is hard to prove. Looks like Judge Wolf got a lot of information and the correct dates wrong. However the idea of anyone knowing where Whitey Bulger was and what he was doing between 1965 and may 1974 is farfetched at best . How would anyone know what a criminal does and does not do on a daily basis ? Yes , I think people who are aware of Steve Flemi know that he was the person who was close to the North End and Mr Patriarca , but Whitey did not have a reputation as a South Boston milkman at that time either.This trial shows that what happeneds in a courtroom regarding long ago events is a recollection at best , not always a presentation of fact. regards,

    1. Norwood:
      I can’t prove a negative as you point out. Such a statement would never come into evidence in a courtroom. We don’t know everything about Whitey. No one does except himself. He could have gone at at some time and murdered someone. All I’m talking about is what I believe the evidence shows. There is no credible evidence he murdered anyone before that time.
      I try to analyze the evidence I have seen and see if it passes my believability test. For instance, I can’t say with absolute certainty that Judge Wolf never did a murder before May 1974.
      I can look at the dates 1965 to 1974 and ask who was murdered in South Boston at that time. If I don’t see any murders outside of Whitey’s friends O’Sullivan and Killeen and the reason for the former is that O’Sullivan killed Paulie McGonagles brother – in other words three murders that Whitey had nothing to do with. FRom that I can say I don’t see where he killed anyone. I don’t know of any other bodies missing around that time or any allegations he was involved with other murders than the ones I have discussed. . Could Whitey have killed someone, of course, but so could any gangster but we can only deal with knowns.
      I argue with Wolf’s characterization of Whitey’s reputation as being widespread. He had a reputation in Southie of being a tough guy and someone you didn’t want to mess with who was involved in the rackets. It was mainly confined to Southie and wasn’t as Wolf suggests that he was another Al Capone.

      1. There are very many statements that have been made on this blog, especially in the comments, that “would never come into evidence in a courtroom.”

        There are legitimate issues with what’s happening here, and many people have not been held accountable. Making unproven & unprovable sweeping claims designed to reflect positively on Whitey’s (or John Connolly’s for that matter, IMHO) character (or not-so bad character) is ethically unjustified and weakens focus on legitimate issues. Legalities and federal corruption aside, Whitey was a monster and John Connolly abetted him.

        1. Asmithee:
          Thanks for you comment. Perhaps most of the things said in the discussions in this blog would never come into evidence since it is opinion by people who have very different, and strong opinions one way or the other.
          A close analysis of many of the things people have been led to believe have turned out not to be correct. There is a case to be made that John Connolly was at a minimum harshly treated or that he was wrongfully convicted in Florida.
          There is nothing here that violates any ethics. The First Amendment fortunately still gives us the right to question our governments actions as it give you the right to say we are wrong and causing the issues to be confused.
          Few have defended Whitey here. More have defended Connolly. What we are trying to do is to dispassionately discuss how bad Whitey really was. Was he the monster you seem to believe or was he just a two bit hoodlum involved in some brutal matters whose reputation has been enhanced by the media into something he was not. We’re working through this to try to understand it.
          You’re welcome to tell us we’re looking at it in the wrong way, as you have done. We want everyone to have a chance to participate and through that we may arrive at some point closer to the truth.

          1. I appreciate trying to understand. I share that goal. It seems to me that trying to minimize whether Whitey really bad or really really really bad is counterproductive to the real issues. He’s was still a menace to society. Comparing him to the judge on the question of whether or not one could conclusively say they hadn’t committed murder in a give time period.

            I certainly never meant to imply you didn’t have the right to say whatever you want. Have at it. I’m just saying that acting & looking like a Whitey apologist is a bad idea.

            1. Asmithee:
              Sorry for the delay in getting back. I don’t intent to look like a Whitey apologist. I’m not minimizing his evil ways but I am trying to put them into perspective because other people have been affected and other things have happened because he has been turned into something he really isn’t. For instance, his alleged heads-above-all-other-criminals that ever existed – if that were the case – reflects badly on his brother Billy because if Whitey was so notorious then Billy can be said to have had knowledge of this; but if Whitey is just another evil person going about under the radar that knowledge cannot be attributed to Billy, or even to people like the FBI.

              Don’t worry about telling me off if it appears I’m out of line, that’s what I want you to do because the more ideas that are floated out here the better we will be. Your suggestion that I look like a Whitey apologist if good because it make me consider what I am doing so that impression is not left out there. Thanks.

  5. Very good posts keep up the good work. It takes much patience and perseverance to read a 600page decision by an ill informed, bloviating judge.

    1. N:
      It has to be done but I’m still pondering why Wolf insisted Whitey was such a big gangster when it wasn’t the case. Did the prosecutors along with the gangster attorneys make him believe that and then he had to justify something that ran against the evidence. Hard to figure.

  6. Pres. Obama said the FBI performed it’s duties in the Marathon bombing case. Do you agree or is he part of the cover up? Or do they have pictures of BHO? 2. Can’t any of those judges at the Moakley courthouse tell the truth? Was Wolfe deliberately false or just incompetent? Wolfe thinks the bombing of Pearl Harbor was the cause of the Spanish American war. He has no negative evidence in the decade of the seventies against WB so he just makes stuff up from the eighties. He couldn’t even bother to look at the Clerk’s records to determine Naimovich was found not guilty. The Court of Appeals falsely asserts that Connolly was found guilty of taking bribes. A good man is hard to find according to F. O’Connor. It looks like a truthful Federal judge is even more elusive. Wolfe is the Misfit of the local judiciary.

    1. N:
      1. Obama is part of the cover-up. Mueller must have a dossier on him. It’s now out that the Saudis also warned us about Tamerlan. I’t beginning to look like we’ve been safe all these years because the ones (underwear and shoe bombers) who attacked us failed on their own. The Homeland Security money is being spent on making contractors rich and on building up big staffs. We haven’t advanced a day since 9/11 in processing intelligence info.
      2. Wolf grew up in the suburbs where he studied hard. He knew it wasn’t the Spanish American war that was important but the War of 1812 when the Japanese under Old Hickory burned Washington, DC to the ground.

      1. Seems we might have a potential wag the dog and wag the Wolf situation on our hands. I noted Senator’s Lindsays’ revised comments about the FBI and how they may not have had the proper tools and they should be looking at that. Is it federal budget cycle season again? We should all be mindful to watch increases in line-items and curious language/allocations in “outside sections.” I hope it is also not tied in to certain groups’ desires to develop an appetite to “bomb the Russians” now as a means of “getting private military contractors more work.” Once again, and hate to harp on the man and be a johnny one-note, but I am also still bothered about the big picture and timing….
        2010 FBI sting (with the help of IBM) rooting out “Russian spies here in the US” and setting up an “exchange” for our spies over there. Meanwhile Buffett (who buys up IBM a year or so later)invested big bucks in the UN Nuclear Energy Bank. (Yes, the UN has a nuclear bank)
        June 2012 Buffett invested huge in Tungsten – another investment scheme that is a sudden and radical departure from his usual portfolio.
        A few months later, September 2012 “trillions in diamonds” under “Russian crater” was reported. Industrial diamonds of course are a natural form of carbon/tungsten used in nuclear power manufacturing (in addition to there other uses).
        While the masses in our country are always primed to focus on “oil, oil, oil” we have forgotten that the real race is still on for who controls all the “nuclear power.”
        Bottomline: Mr. Bulger should be amazed that he has become a force of nature himself, equal to the powerful resource of “oil.” But without a doubt, it seems both subjects are being used as red-herrings or “deflections.”

        1. Alex:
          After 9-11 former FBI director Louis Freeh went before a Congressional committee which was investigating the FBI’s failures to prevent 9/11. He told the members of Congress that one of the problems the FBI had was insufficient resources. He suggested had Congress given the FBI everything that it wanted in its budgetary request then perhaps it may have prevented the disaster. So it isn’t the FBI’s fault, it’s Congress’s fault.

          You can see it happening again. We have to give the FBI more and more even though we still don’t know what the Russians told it, how many times the Russians give warnings, what exactly was done, where there other tips or trips, and on and on. No one wants to inquire into the FBI, not even the president, who yesterday assured us it did a great job.

          And as for Buffett, if you keep pointing out how he gets special deals from the Government he may soon want to hire you to keep you quiet.

          1. YES! What an absolutely brilliant idea. Mr. Buffett should hire me if for nothing else to keep me quiet by “conflicting me out” and if I had a job working for him I would be far too busy to read and write any more of this stuff. Now that would be the best investment he could ever make! I love it.

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