Sunday Whitey Bulger Update Just Before The Patriot Jets Game

A brief post today on Sunday, a day of rest, summing things up.

I’ve reflected back on the posts I’ve started since last June and at the twists and turns this blog has taken.  When I started I discussed Whitey Bulger and John Connolly with a certain attitude toward both.

I wanted to learn more about Whitey and what made him tick. At first, because I remembered he was perceived as a bully by us young children, I toyed with the idea that he may have been some sort of bully or cowardly type individual since most of the crimes we read about always happened with the backing of others. He was an enigma in that he didn’t play sports in a neighborhood where every kid played sports. He had a bad reputation as a young thug and criminal in a neighborhood where the crime rate was very low. (Old Harbor Village in those days had one of the lowest crime rates in the city.)

As I read more and heard more stories, not that any one story is totally true, it appeared that he was as tough, fearless and as anti-social as what he is reputed to be.  Those closest to him, tough guys and gangsters themselves, treated him with respect and wariness. I’m not sure whether any of the gangsters outside of Weeks and Flemmi actually liked the guy. But whether they did or not, even the toughest never indicated any of that to his face.  He was a mean, disciplined person not to be toyed with.

There’s still much to know about him.  We’re now trying to figure out how likely it is that he was involved in the murders attributed to him?  Were there others he killed that there are no witnesses to? What exactly was his relationship to Southie?

My attitude toward FBI Agent John Connolly has been modified since I first started writing. He’d done things I was never happy with him doing but I see these were things that were part of his job as he saw it. He believed the FBI authorized him to do anything he wanted to do as long as he was protecting Whitey and Stevie, even to the extent of allowing innocent individuals to be set upon by the Department of Justice. The FBI backed him up in everything that he did. The FBI set up, and maintains today, one of the most ill-conceived programs ever created by any law enforcement agency, the top echelon informant program, which is nothing more than pairing up with gangsters to go after other gangsters. As I see it, when you have a long-term relationship with a criminal to protect him or “keep him safe” you’ve become part of the problem.

Where I have changed with respect to Connolly is in the prosecution of him in Florida. I think that is a great injustice because the federal government did not exercise its right under the Supremacy Clause to intervene and stop that prosecution because what he did he was authorized to do; also, because he was acquitted of similar facts in a previous trial in Boston, and, the Florida appeals court refuses to write an opinion about his trial.

I had other matters I wanted to consider in the beginning. I want to write more about Billy Bulger. He’s alleged to have been corrupt. I don’t believe that. I will examine each of his alleged wrongdoings and explain what they are and how I see them.  I promised this a long time ago but to date other things have come in the way. It is still my intention to do this.

I also have to write about State Trooper John Naimovich who was one of Connolly’s victims and those people who went after him. Naimovich was charged, tried and acquitted of these crimes, but his life was ruined, as usually happens to a person who loves his work and it is unfairly taken away from him.  He would die two years after his trial.

I still have to write more about the FBI and its involvement in going after organize crime. I’ve written something about it, but there is a lot more that has to be discussed.  Then we have the topics of what’s going on today with the FBI and its use of top echelon informants, and the general actions of the federal government in protecting some people from being charged with murders while charging others.

Even though I’ve been writing for almost four months, there’s still a lot more to write about, things that have arisen in matters surrounding the trial of Whitey Bulger. Then aside from that, I’ve felt a need to comment on the Annie Dookhan matter which is still covered in the fog of “it’s under investigation, I can’t comment.” I’ll continue to comment on that and on other matters as strike my interest..

As I mentioned previously, Whitey’s case is scheduled for a hearing tomorrow so I’ll have to saddle up and head off to Boston to see what is going on.

 

 

6 thoughts on “Sunday Whitey Bulger Update Just Before The Patriot Jets Game

  1. Connolly was convicted by the 2002 Boston jury of one offense for his 23 years as an FBI agent: giving a case of wine with $1,000 in it to Morris; the wine came from Bulger. One crime in 23 years as an FBI agent.
    The four other crimes he was convicted of sounded under both the RICO statutes and separate federal statues. These four occurred four to ten years after he left the FBI, from 1994 to 2000. For example, his lying to the FBI agent in about 2000 sounded both under RICO and as a separate offense. Three of his “obstruction of justice” convictions were the same crimes sounding under RICO and separate Federal Obstruction Statues.
    His lying to an FBI agent occured like this (as recounted in a recent book): An FBI agent called him on the telephone and they conversed and he told Connolly he would be interviewing him in the future and at some point he asked Connolly “Did Flemmi’s defense team contact you!” He says Connolly said “No!” He wrote that down. He was sure Connolly did not say “So”. He was sure he said, “No” He didn’t ask him any follow up questions. Technically, this was not a lie. Connolly had contacted Flemmi’s lawyers office twenty times over several years or so —telephone records showed that—but no records showed Flemmi’s office had contacted him. Either way, it’s a trifle, a quibble. Connolly had every right under the constitution to help Flemmi’s defense team and Flemmi’s lawyers had every right to contact Connolly or any other private citizen to help their defense. I don’t see how this constitutes a crime! I don’t see what authority the FEDS have to ask anyone about their constitutional right to consult attorneys.
    As far as the letter to Judge Wolf, I agree that was an outrage. Wolf himself admits he gets lots of letters and usually shares them with counsel for both parties. We have constitutional free speech rights and free petition rights to write to anyone in government and express our beefs! The Boston Cop certainly has a civil defamation action against Connolly. If Connolly wrote and sent the letter—eleven finger prints were on the letter and envelope, none of them his—-he should be prosecuted under state law for illegal use of the Boston Police’s stationary. I don’t see it as a federal obstruction of justice claim. I do see it as an outrage.
    As far as Connolly’s convictions on telling Bulger and Flemmi to flee, these were based on Weeks’ fabrication of the secret conversation in the walk-in freezer on December 23, 1994. The problem is twofold. Bulger and Theresa Stanely went to New York for “three days” sometime on December 23 and were in New Orleans from December 26 through New Years DAy. Bulger had registered in his own name at the New Orleans Hotel. If he was fleeing, if he’d been tipped off the FEds were coming after him, he’d hardly register in his own name. Moreover, Theresa STanley testified that on January 5, when she and Bulger were driving back from New York, they heard on the radio that Flemmi had been arrested pursuant to a warrant, and they turned around and headed back to New York. If Weeks had tipped Bulger off on December 23, what was he doing driving back to Boston on Jamuary 5? Bulger, the career criminal, surely knew about arrest warrants.
    As far as MOrris’s story about the case of wine with $1,000, I don’t believe a word of it.
    The 200 letters written on John Connolly’s behalf at the end of Boston trial and 100 FBI agent who subsequently sent a letter to the DOJ demanding an investigation of Connolly’s Boston prosecution, were motivated largely by the fact that Connolly’s lifelong friends and longtime colleagues believed Connolly was an honorable man who came from an honorable family and whose actions throughout his life were characterized by honor. The letter writers, including myself, were not arguing that Connolly was “only following orders.” They were arguing he was a good man wrongly convicted by overly zealous prosecutors who put known perjurers and serial killers on the stand.
    As to the Florida trial, it is beyond cavil that Wyshak flagrantly violated the Double Jeopardy provisions of the Constitution. It was the Federal government that tried Connolly in Boston in 2002 and the federal government, with Wyshak as the lead counsel, that tried Connolly in Miami in 2008. The Feds prepared all the witnesses, the known perjurer Flemmi was substituted for the known perjurer Salemme, Martorano and Weeks were prepared by the Feds in Boston for both the Boston and Miami trials; the State cops who testified in Miami were prepared by the Feds in Boston—they had been working for years with the feds in Boston. Connolly was acquitted in Miami of first degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder. At the end of trial, Wyshak added a new count “murder by gun”. The judge admitted in Court that the statute of limitations (SOL) had run on that count. The judge said “But the defense raised the SOL two weeks too late” Constitutional law says you can raise the SOL “at any time.” Connolly’s Miami attorney, Manuel Casiabelle said, “OK judge, your wrong, but I plead ‘ineffective assistance of counsel.” If I raised the statute of limitations too late, that is per se “ineffective assistance of counsel” therefore under the Constitution Connolly is entitled to a new trial. The judge again turned his back on the Constitution. Other Constitutional impediments as you suggest are the problems with the Supremacy Clause, the problem that Wyshak introduced no evidence, that is failed to prove that Connolly had a gun on when Martorano killed Callahan or when Connolly allegedly told Bulger that Callahan couldn’t stand up to pressure. If you haven’t “proven” an “essential element” of the crime of “murder by gun”, you can’t convict. The uncontroverted evidence in the Miami trial was that when Callahan was killed, Connolly was on vacation on a beach in Martha’s Vineyard, 1,600 miles away. That raises other Constitutional issues like these: the irrational application of a state law; the overbroad interpretation of a state law; the singly out of one man and applying with laser beam accuracy a novel interpretation of a state law.
    The fact is Connolly was found guilty in Boston of one crime during his 23 years as an FBI agent. He was wrongly retried in Miami by the Federal Government in the person of Fred Wyshak for a crime he was acquitted of in Boston.
    If Connolly is be accused of any criminal activity relating to the murders Bulger and Flemmi committed remember two things: (1) he has already been acquitted of those things by a jury in Boston; (2) prior to the mid-1990s, years after Connolly retired, no one in law enforcement in Boston, no one in the media in Boston, linked Flemmi or Bulger to any of the 22 murders they’ve been collectively accused of.
    Finally, it’s easy to look back thirty or twenty years and speculate what we could have done differently. Naimovitch was wrongly prosecuted by Federal Prosecutors based on bad info from FBI agents and state cops. There is a lot of blame to go around. Wolf is to blamed for finding Naimovitch guilty when a jury had previously acquitted him. Wolf is to blamed for ignoring the time-tested rule that in deciding motions to dismiss you only find those facts necessary to deciding the motions before you. Wolf went on a witch hunt and found 18 FBI agents had violated some rules, regulations and statutes. There are administrative law judges whose jobs are to find if government workers violated administrative codes. If Wolf found anyone violated a statute that had criminal penalities attached to it, he usurped the jury’s function, he usurped the adversarial process in America. In 1998, Wyshak was representing the government before judge Wolf. Did Wyshak know that at the same time as Wolf was finding 18 agents violated laws and regulations, grand juries had been convened to look into whether Connolly and other lower echelon FBI agents were violating laws and regulations. Was Wyshak defending the FBI agents, or was he agreeing with FLemmi’s lawyer, Fishman, and Salemme’s lawyer, Cardinale, that all FBI agents in Boston were corrupt.
    Where was the rule of law in all of these shennanigans?

    1. What you write is true about Connolly. I don’t know why the jury picked out that one incident with the wine and the thousand dollars. I don’t remember what I wrote about it in the book but it did stand out during the trial because Morris got into describing the type of wine box saying it had six bottles up top and six bottles in the bottom; he said the $1000 was on the cardboard separating the top from the bottom. The way he explained it stood out since I can still remember the discussion of it which was brought out on cross-examination by Miner which emphasized the incident. That was the only thing the jury found he did wrong as an FBI agent.
      I’ve said before that I think the jury believed what he did as an FBI agent was part of what he was supposed to have done. It mainly concentrated on what he did when he befriended Weeks (Chico) and Flemmi and worked on behalf of them. His letter did amount to an obstruction of justice since Wolf held additional hearings to determine if the allegations were true.
      The lie to the FBI agent was trivial but a lot of people have gone to jail over such trivialities. I cannot believe it is a crime. I saw in the Annie Dookhan case she was charged with lying to some official. You can see the state accruing ever more power.
      You make a good point I did not think about. The federal prosecutor Wyshak did try Connolly twice for the same offense. I wonder if that has ever been litigated because that is not two different sovereigns. You mention all the other problems with the Florida case. My big problem withe Florida is I don’t think Connolly has decent lawyers anywhere. No one seems to be doing anything for him that I can see. Connolly even is confused about what is going on. He reportedly is depending on Whitey to say something on his behalf relative to the matter of Whitey’s flight which to me is not smart because no one will believe anything Whitey says. Connolly needs a good lawyer if he is ever going to get out of prison.
      There is something that occurred here between Wyshak (Durham) and the FBI. A bargain was struck. The FBI gave up Connolly both here and in Florida in exchange for them agreeing not to go beyond Connolly. Nothing else makes sense for the utter abandonment of Connolly especially the failure to bring up the Supremacy Clause. I don’t think any other FBI agent was ever charged in a state court for an action done as an agent without the FBI insisting the DOJ file in federal court an action stopping it. Look at Ruby Ridge where the DOJ intervened but lost. Here, the silence of the FBI tells me a deal was made.

  2. as always, very interesting post. you have a lot to be proud of putting this blog together and i thank you for taking the time to do it. as you have seen many people who have followed the whitey bulger saga appriciate your fact filled stories. the comment section has proved most interesting . todays game with the jets and pats should be a good one. i think back to the bobby era era in boston hard to believe so much serios crime and goverment intrige going on in the same area as the old boston garden at that same time. the writer of the book legends of winter hill took readers back to that gritty era. you have filled in many pieces of the puzzle and i thank you for it. regards

    1. Thanks Doug, you were right about the game. Appreciate your comments. Keep giving me your input where you think necessary.

  3. John Connoley lost my respect for what he did to PBD Det. Frank Dewan But Connoley got railroaded in Florida when the court would not publish it’s opinion closing the door on his appeal

    1. Connolly after he left the FBI in 1990 entered into a plan with Weeks and Flemmi to try to undermine the case pending before Judge Wolf. As part of that plan he sent the letter to Wolf suggesting that Frank Dewan had committed some illegal acts. I agree with you that was beyond the pale and he was rightfully convicted of doing that. I had great difficulty seeing him siding with gangsters and trying to undermine a good cop but his history, as I indicated, was to do things like that. I’ve always felt he was fairly tried in Boston and received and appropriate sentence, although one could say it was somewhat harsh because it was the maximum under the probation guidelines. As I’ve said and you agree, the Florida appeal decision is suspect. Who ever heard of a guy getting 40 years and not getting a written opinion justifying the conviction It doesn’t pass the smell test. Thanks for writing, Jim.

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