After Whitey’s arrest in 2011 English’s interest in the case was again piqued. He decided to make a telephone call to incarcerated FBI agent John Connolly who is doing time on the Florida panhandle having been wrongly convicted of the murder of John Callahan. He persuaded Connolly to speak to him on the telephone. Why Connolly would do this is a mystery because his 2005 book did a real job on him painting him as a little better than the murderous Whitey.
English would write an article based on that conversation. Connolly would end up in solitary confinement for 50 days for breaking prison rules by talking to him. English ended up with a story in Newsweek Magazine.
His last sentence in the story is: “Amid the uncertainty, one thing is clear; as the U.S. Justice Department prepares to put on trial one of the most murderous gangsters in the last half century, it is in no position to claim the moral high ground.” Two mistakes in one sentence: Whitey was far from being “one of the most murderous gangsters” and the Department of Justice (DOJ) had no problem claiming the moral high ground. English because of his recent foray into Boston was totally confused about the DOJ’s involvement in matters.
English’s suggestion that the local federal prosecutors had no right to claim “the moral high ground” is made around the time it would become the drum beat of the defense team. He searches about for a person who will abet him in his attempt to denigrate the DOJ prosecutors. He finds former State Police Colonel Thomas Foley who lamely says: “The DOJ has no appetite for any kind of self-examination.” Foley worked with Wyshak in bringing down Whitey and his crew. Didn’t he understand Wyshak and his fellow prosecutors are part of the DOJ?
Foley would also write a book. In it he was so enamored of the FBI that he suggested it broke up the 1957 Mafia meeting at Apalachin, New York, which gave lie to J. Edgar Hoover’s expressed belief that there was no national syndicate. That good work was done by the New York State Police as is commonly known.
English to justify his “somewhat is rotten in Denmark” approach takes the DOJ federal cover-up back to the early 1960s by bringing up the Teddy Deegan murder about which he has a dismal understanding. He calls Joe “the Animal” Barboza an FBI Top Echelon Informant (TEI) which he never was. He also says Vincent “Jimmy the Bear” Flemmi, the brother of Steve Flemmi was a TEI with the FBI. That’s highly questionable. The FBI was thinking of making him one after the Deegan murder but it is not clear he ever became one.
English suggests the six defendants in the Deegan murder were prosecuted because the FBI did not want to have it known that their TEIs committed Deegan’s murder. If the guys weren’t TEIs at the time how does that make sense.
Far from hiding Barboza’s involvement in the murder, the FBI flipped him and had him admit his role. He testified that he was involved. The federal prosecutors had nothing to do with the prosecution. It was tried in Suffolk Superior Court by Suffolk County Assistant District Attorney Jack Zalkind. It was a state trial. The FBI had a hand in it because it had turned Barboza into a cooperating witness.