O’Sullivan’s Reason For Giving Whitey Immunity – I

Persist. The Leaves Will Soon Return

J.W. Carney, Jr. and Hank Brennan are not reckless lawyers. They are not about to go out on the limb with assertions that they cannot support. I’m trying to figure out what line of reasoning they are going to use to justify Whitey’s claim of immunity along with his claim that he is not an informant.

Rather than doing as the prosecutors have done which is to say Whitey’s claim he was not an informant “is contradicted by over 20 years of records and judicial opinions” or that it “is both strange and unsubstantiated” and ignoring it, I’m going to assume it has merit. I do this in part because the 20 years of FBI records have been found to be totally untrustworthy by the same judges who used them in their opinions. I think we should study them knowing they are part fiction, closely examine the situation outside the records it in light of what we know, and come up with independent answers.

I have to ask how then can Whitey not be an informant but still have arrived at a deal with O’Sullivan that he would not be prosecuted for any of his crimes. I’m not saying I believe or disbelieve any of Carney’s claims, I’m just trying to figure how he’s going to squeeze both of them into the same basket.

The basis for believing Whitey was an informant is the FBI records that have him listed as one and includes information he allegedly provided the FBI. But we also know Whitey had no access to the FBI files. He never signed any papers agreeing to be an informant. There is no evidence he knew he was listed as an informant. There is no evidence he knew the information he was giving to Connolly was being reduced to writing.

According to FBI files when asked once if the FBI could take his photograph, he said no; and when asked whether he would take a lie detector test he again said no. Doesn’t sound like he’s being handled by the FBI but rather the other way around. But then again we’ve been told that any relationship between the truth and FBI files is purely coincidental. That’s one of the great difficulties in this matter, the FBI records are self-serving, unverifiable and unreliable .

We know the basis for Whitey’s claim he was not an informant. He says his deal with Connolly was to pay him for information. The prosecution has noted Whitey’s “admissions regarding his payments to Connolly have occurred in recorded jail calls . . . “ Whitey will admit is that he talked with Connolly to get information and say he gave him general information about what was going on which was little no more than street level gossip, nothing that was specific or caused anyone to be charged with a crime.

That was why Whitey was so confident no one would believe he was an informant. It wasn’t as so many say that he figured because of his status as a top gangster it was inconceivable he’d be informing. Other top gangster in the Mafia had turned state’s evidence. It was that he had given no information that put anyone in jeopardy. There was no trail back to him. The Mafia in Boston or any other potential enemy could not show that Whitey had information which the feds ended up having.

Connolly always had difficulty coming up with substantial information that he could say Whitey gave him to justify keeping Whitey as an informant. He seemed always to return to the two or three times that he said Whitey gave  information when it appeared a cop was in danger which information he’d say saved the cop’s life. Whitey may or may not own up to that but a person saving a cop from being killed is not considered an informant.

What we do know is there was a continual dispute in the FBI Boston office concerning Whitey’s value to the FBI. Robert Fitzgerald, the Boston ASAC who arrived in Boston in 1981 suggests that he went through Whitey’s files and found nothing of value. He wanted to close him out. I’m not a Fitzgerald fan and find difficulty with most he has written but he had to have a basis for making this conclusion. Other agents have said the same thing about Whitey that his information was worthless.

How could he be a Top Echelon Informant and be providing information that some considered of no value? The only thing that seems to square with this is that Whitey did not give information. He was not a legitimate informant but an FBI book informant, carried on the books without his knowledge so that the agent could get credit for him.

But consider this, what does it mean when a more informed view of the evidence begins to show Whitey was not an informant after all. Does it diminishes Connolly’s status as an FBI agent or enhance it because he was covering for Stevie Flemmi the real, admitted informant. It certainly undermines a guy like Martorano who justifies his informing by saying “you can’t rat on a rat.”  It turns all the books about Whitey into fairy tales.

It makes Whitey into a stand-up guy. The one guy who didn’t rat anyone out. The one guy willing to do the time for his crime. He becomes the Professor Moriarty of non-fiction.

I’ll go on tomorrow when I move on to a consideration of what it means to be an informant.

13 thoughts on “O’Sullivan’s Reason For Giving Whitey Immunity – I

  1. Scott’s insight is very interesting, but the problem is that O’Sullivan never went after FBI agents(that I know of). FBI agents weren’t accused of any wrongdoing until Judge Wolfe’s hearings (his witchhunt; his fishing expedition) in 1998-99, long after Whitey fled. But in those hearings Wyshak did allow Salemme/Flemmi’s lawyers Cardinale et al to hurl a lot of dirt at FBI agents and Wyshak, who was supposed to be representing the government, did little to deter that mud-slinging, in fact, it seems to me that he and Wolfe encouraged maximum mud slinging. Wyshak, in fact, must have known that while he was before Wolfe, fellow prosecutors were presenting evidence to a grand jury attempting to implicate agents. So, Scott’s insight is thought provoking! That grand jury eventual did indict only Connolly.
    The plot thickens.

    1. Bill:
      No one could accuse the FBI agents of wrongdoing because they kept all their secrets hidden until Judge Wolf opened the door to expose them. The Boston office is the only one in the nation that has been so closely scrutinized so it’s fair to say the same problems exist nationwide.
      Wolf’s hearing were far from a witch hunt or fishing expedition. He had in front of him Connolly’s informant Flemmi who said that he was an informant and Connolly promised him immunity from the charges (he had not yet been charged with murder) before the court. What was Wolf to do? He had to hold hearings, bring in FBI agents, and give counsel the right to examine them. Anything else would have been wrong. The fact he may have guessed wrong at some things only makes him human, it doesn’t suggest he did other than he was duty bound to do as a judge.

      I’ve said before Connolly should have gone in and testified at those hearing in front of Wolf and cleared up the problems rather than hiding behind the Fifth Amendment. Wolf found he had the right to take the Fifth because if he testified he may have incriminated himself. Flemmi said he dealt with Connolly. Connolly would not back him up. What would you have done in Judge Wolf’s position?

      Scott noted that the FBI’s deficient files “would only strengthen [Whitey’s] case that Connolly was corrupt and fabricating info while taking bribes.” You are right that Scott’s insight are thought provoking. Whitey is claiming he paid for information from Connolly. He has told others this. If Whitey is not an informant then what was Connolly doing dealing with him? You talk about not wanting to believe the words of gangsters like Whitey, Weeks and Flemmi but there is more to it than that, I’d say one would not want to associate with them yet Connolly did for twenty years. Now all of them, the ones who would know if Connolly was taking money, are saying they paid him off for protection. These are the guys he hung around with. What was that expression about birds of a feather. It seems the more you condemn these criminals the more you do the same for Connolly.

      It is not Judge Wolf or the prosecutors who had Connolly dealing with these people, that was his decision.

  2. You hypothesized before that Carney’s argument would be that O
    ‘Sullivan and Bulger reached a deal where he would protect any FBI agents or cops that were in danger in exchange for immunity. Instead maybe he can make the argument that Bulger and O’Sullivan agreed BUlger would give O’Sullivan information about corrupt FBI agents and cops in exchange for immunity. That way he can show he was not acting as an informant on any of his ‘friends’ instead working to bring down ‘cops’. I imagine that would be pretty stand up in his circle of acquaintances. If proved the FBI files are fictional in any way it would only strengthen his case that Connolly was corrupt and fabricating info while taking bribes. Just a thought.

    1. Scott:
      I’ve changed my mind on that because upon reflection I don’t think protecting cops would be that high on O’Sullivan’s list of concerns. He was the boss of the Strike Force and the nationwide mandate was to wipe out the Mafia. For the same reason I don’t think he’d care too much about corrupt FBI agents or corrupt cops. The latter group were handled by the AUSAs in the main office and not the Strike Force. You may recall Agent Morris was in charge of an investigation of 7 Boston cops who were convicted of taking payoffs from restaurants. It had to be something relating to the Mafia that he was looking for Whitey’s help on.
      I think it is clear the FBI files are part fact and part nonsensical fiction. Judge Wolf found as much in his 661 page decision. When someone can be at TJ Maxx looking at markdowns and return a couple of hours later to the office and report that she met an informant and no one can say otherwise then you have problems especially in an organization that believes unless it is written down it doesn’t exist.

  3. P.S. It was the famous undercover agent Joe Pistone “Donny Brasco” who credited John Connolly with being the one man most responsible for taking down the New England Mafia. Always remember, too, those 100 FBI agents who worked directly with John Connolly over many years who supported him in writing and petitioned the government to investigate the federal prosecutors.
    Who do we believe?
    I’d take the 100+ FBI agents’ credibility over the prosecutors who tried to fix the Tierney case (by recommending no jail time for the Congressman’s wife); and who are making a federal case out of the probation department’s civilian hiring practices (alleging 20 hires out of 1,200 weren’t quite up to snuff); and who threatened a 20 year old student hacker, Mr. Scwartz, with 50 years in prison.

    1. Billy:
      The FBI helped prosecute Connolly. 100 agents out of 35,000 active and retired isn’t a big support group. What do you make of the 34,900 agents who refuse to support him?

      1. Matt, come on! The 100 who support him knew him best and worked with him over many years. The others lived in Chicago,Seattle, Pheonix, Los Angeles, etc, and never knew John. If someone in a D.A.s office got support from 100 co-workers, would it be fair to say what about the thousands of State cops and DAs who didn’t support him? Or what about the 10,000 DAs from across the country who didn’t support him? Those who knew John Connolly best support him. What about Naimovitch? An innocent man and out of 3,000 state cops, one supported him. And probably 100 knew him well. What indicates more support? One supporter or one-hundred supporters?

        1. Billy:
          Naimovich was acquitted. Connolly was convicted. Naimovich didn’t need people trying to get him out of jail
          At Connolly’s trial he only had three agents who stepped up to support him. I don’t know who the 100 are but they did not attend the trial. I’m just suggesting that 100 is rather a feeble showing for an outfit like the FBI that likes to protect its own.

  4. 1. Connolly handled both Flemmi and Bulger. Flemmi and Weeks have the track records of abusing women; not Bulger.
    2. Matt, I will believe what Whitey said in recorded calls from jail when I hear it myself. I’ll still retain a healthy dose of skepticism about what any serial killer says. I’ll repeat myself: the only published comment, so far, was Whitey saying, “I paid for information; I didn’t give information.” Inferences could be drawn from that, such as: he paid FBI agents, cops, prosecutors, judges, politicians, or newspaper people. Remember Sony’s line from the Godfather: “We’ve got newspaper people on the payroll, don’t we Tom?” So, the only report about Whitey’s jail cell telephone calls, as far as I know about them, appeared in the Boston Globe. Let’s see what the recordings actually say. I wouldn’t trust any prosecutor in Wyshak’s office summarizing what was said in any conversation.
    If we are to believe Whitey, one thing is for sure: he wasn’t helping Connolly write those reports.
    We’re back to square one: Whose word do you trust?

    1. Billy:
      Apparently they have given Whitey’s lawyers copies of recordings of Whitey telling others he paid of Connolly. Carney has not denied that.

  5. “There was no trail back to him” (him being Whitey), Connolly “covering for Stevie Flemmi, the real admitted informant”….Connolly’s defense was he used people as informants to take down the Italian mafia….who did Connolly say he was handling, Bulger, Flemmi or both? I would think Connolly would have covered for Bulger over Flemmi. Regardless, Flemmi is pure scum, a child molester.

  6. I can personally substantiate the fact that Boston FBI files are unreliable. I have posted a list of correspondence that I mailed to a person who represented himself to me to be a FBI agent who later told me they had been destroyed with no trace on nhjustice.net.. But, then I just recently found out that my finger prints in the FBI file were that of a 5 foot 8 in white male, which I am not. So, how does one verify what is the truth? Is there no internal affairs to make a review? Checks and balances?

    1. Jean:
      You hit upon the problem. There is no basis upon which a person is able to point to an FBI file for a definitive answer. The only way to figure out what really happened is to read what is written and then try to ascertain what is happening outside the FBI offices to determine if it has any relation to reality. It’s very sad that our history is so corrupted by such a shoddy system.

Comments are closed.