Patrick Nee of South Boston: Strange How His Irish Luck Held Out

Patrick Nee of South Boston seemed to have slipped through the troubles, not the Troubles in Ireland, but those in South Boston surrounding Whitey Bulger relatively unscathed. Going through the life of Whitey Bulger he is there and not there – he is his enemy, his partner, his enemy. The final episode that we see concerning him is his attorney claiming he will take the Fifth Amendment at Whitey’s trial. I don’t recall if he appears in court at all or if he does he remains all but out of sight in the back of it.

One thing about him is certain. He was good friends with Kevin Weeks. Both men protected each other.

Nee was a member of the Mullen gang. It was that gang that fought the Killeen gang in South Boston for control of the rackets. That war ended with a peace agreement instituted among the gangsters at the gangster owned Chandlers nightclub in Boston’s South End. With Howie Winter the boss of the Winter Hill Gang presiding, Whitey Bulger who had been part of the Killeen group met with Pat Nee and Tommy King who were part of the Mullen group. They decided the racket money from South Boston would be divided down the middle between both gangs.

As Pat Nee said they became partners with Whitey. Tommy King was not too happy with the outcome. The Mullens had won the war in Southie yet they were going to split the proceeds with the loser.

At the time of the Chandler meeting the other big gun in the Killeen gang, Billy O’Sullivan had been murdered. He was gunned down by three or four of the Mullens including Paulie McGonagle who was also one of the Mullens’ leaders. Nee in his book would write that Paulie did it by himself to revenge his brother’s killing by O’Sullivan; the newspapers reported at the time of the incident that three or four men killed him. It would make sense that one of the others could have been Nee.

After the Chandler’s meeting Whitey began to hang out with Winter’s gang in Somerville. Nee, who had been charged with assault with attempt to murder and beat the rap when the victim refused to testify against him, went back with the Mullens to Southie.

Paulie McGonagle did not live too long after that. Whitey and Stevie Flemmi eliminated him by having Tommy King murder him. Now get this, Nee participated with Tommy King in burying him at Tenean Beach. How’s that figure? He’s burying his buddy who was killed by his former enemy.

A year later Nee is burying Tommy King who Whitey and Flemmi also arranged to have murdered. He’s now eliminated his partners who he was sharing proceeds with but continues to associate with the guy who arranged their murders. You’d have thought he’d be wanting to go after the guy murdering his buddies rather than burying them for him. Strange.

When Kevin Weeks made his deal with the federal prosecutors to help them find the bodies that Whitey and Stevie Flemmi murdered he had no idea where Paulie McGonagle or Tommy King were buried. He went to Pat Nee to get the information. Pat who was in prison turned it over to him. Was it that favor in providing information against Whitey that saved him from being charged with murdering Halloran and Donohue? Strange.

Brian Halloran and Michael Donohue are gunned down on the South Boston waterfront. Kevin Weeks testifies he served as lookout while Whitey and a man in a ski mask in the back seat who he did not know murdered them. How likely is that? Yet the prosecutors let him testify to it. Witnesses to the shooting saw no one with a mask on. Stevie Flemmi who missed the chance to do the killing said that the man in the back seat was Pat Nee.

Nee wrote that in January 1989 he was released from federal prison in Danbury after doing eighteen months of a four-year sentence for shipping guns to Ireland’s IRA. On November 12, 1991, he was convicted of attempted armed robbery of a bank in Abington. On March 13, 1992, he was sentenced to fourteen years in prison. In 2006 he wrote a book about himself while Whitey was on the run which portrayed Whitey in a very poor light.

All the leaders of the Mullen gang murdered except him. All those around Whitey from Southie dead or having done time except him because of that relationship. I’ve written about his involvement in the John McIntrye murder which I’ll visit again. With all the luck that he’s had it’s hard not to believe he was walking hand-in-hand with the federal prosecutors. Yet, I don’t believe that was the case. I don’t believe he was an informant or cooperated in any way other than to help out Weeks which didn’t affect Whitey one way or the other.  I guess it is true that the Irish are sometimes very lucky.


At the beginning of the book he wrote an author’s note. In part he stated: “Most reporters and authors who write Southie gangster books use CIs — confidential informers — as sources. However, seldom is the majority of information compiled by these sources correct information. Confidential informers are self-serving criminals who lie.(my emphasis). No truer words were spoken about the happenings around Whitey. The same also applies to federal witnesses who testify for deals.

15 thoughts on “Patrick Nee of South Boston: Strange How His Irish Luck Held Out

    1. Free:

      Interesting comment. Very true. We wonder why others did not stand up against tyrants but when it comes to Americans we seem to give ourselves a pass. I have said that we don’t have it in us to resist tyranny if it means more than going out marching once in a while. I can only see clouds ahead.

    1. Of course I do! Some say you’re just a shell of your old self, but I worship the ground you whelk on. Conch you see!

      Mussel-tov, my friend.

      We got more snow on the way. I believe we have more than Boston has. Global Snowing!

  1. Oh …..Hello Abe . Sadé and the wind in my here and now for Providence, up from South County , those undulating ribbons of I-95 and a fast car . Yep, Abe, that will be one sugar cube for you . Kettle is starting to boil . McAbie

  2. Pat Nee is on Bill Weld’s short list for Veep. He is competing with Harvey Weinstein and the Va. Governor.

    1. What’s their theme song? Smooth Operator?

      Down here in Virginia the pot is calling the kettle Black Face.


    I will be posting this again, once or twice on succeeding days, on MATTOFBOSTON’s blog: I think it answers ALL questions: It originally was posted on Valentine’s Day on Matt’s blog as a response to Khalid’s condemnation of the Catholic Church’s teachings and practices. (It was also posted on my FACEBOOK page). A minor revision or two has been made.

    “All birth control did was postpone marriage . . .pre-1970, the average age of an American woman getting married was 20 (20.8 in 1970, earlier earlier) . . . today the average age is 27-28 (27.4 in 2017)
    The Pill also allowed women worldwide to postpone first births . . .in 1970 the average first birth was at 24 years, today over 27 for an American woman . .
    The Church is no more against Sex than it is against perjury or lying
    The Church counsels no sex before marriage as it counsels no lying, no detraction (don’t speak badly of your neighbor)
    Persons with tongues and pens lie and detract and have done so since Ancient Times, quite regularly, as they have had sex since puberty quite regularly (fiddling and nibbling around the edges at first, of course, till sixteen, eighteen or twenty-four)
    As far as sex, I’ve always been of Orson Welles” school, or was it that Irish guy, Oscar Wilde?, his school, which says, “I can resist anything but temptation.” My hero has always been the Irish-Mexican-American Anthony Quinn who had his tenth child at 80 with his fourth wife, whom he married at about 70 and had four children with.
    Read my book: “Spiritual Glue”, a novella in length but fully factual . . . .due out soon from Bookbaby and be sure to get Three Billboards Outside Boston, too, . . . after reading one or both will have no more questions about sex, the church and CORRUPT FEDERAL PROSECUTORS.”

  4. Viet Vets returned and contributed immensely on the homefront, with better records of service, and lower records of drug abuse, crime than their fellow vets. In my book Spiritual Glue you’ll find the cite to the authoritative statistics.

  5. What is left out is that Pat Nee served in Vietnam. In his own words he said roughly that the men who came back from Vietnam were not looking at things the same way in the neighborhoods as before they left. If someone were to write in a screenplay about a masked man in a backseat in a shooting , it would be laughed off. Boston seemed to lead the country back then in unexplainable events. Whose book would I have loved to read! The man who headed up the Massachusetts State Police detectives group for so many years! To many man are dead and gone to ever solve so much of what is written about.

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