Whitey Bulger’s Marriage To The FBI May Have Been Consented To On One Side

An FBI Informant About To Embark On A Mission

The prosecutors have a recording in which Whitey said he was never an informant. This contradicts FBI Agent John Connolly who said he opened Whitey as an informant on September 18, 1975. Here’s the problem. Whitey has no idea that Connolly opened him on that date or any other date. The informant relationship is not like a marriage that is done openly and in front of witnesses and acknowledged by both partners. It is not like an official partnership arrangement where both parties sign the documents. It is not like the granting of immunity in a court case where both parties negotiate a written deal in front of other people and sign off on it.

It is an arrangement that is reduced to writing by only one side. The only evidence that Whitey is an informant comes from the paper Connolly filed with the FBI. Whitey is not involved in executing the paper nor does he acknowledge in front of witnesses he’s become an informant. It’s like letting Joe Slow go to City Hall and file a paper saying he’s married to Jane Fast. We wouldn’t let that happen because we’d like to hear what Jane has to say about it. If it were allowed then Beyonce would have thousands of husbands.

Is there any other relationship that is established with only one side stating it exists? I can’t think of any. This is more than someone saying she’s a friend of someone else. It is a serious relationship that imposes upon the FBI serious obligations as we’ve seen which involve protecting the person and keeping her safe. Why is the FBI allowed to do this? Is it because the FBI is particularly trustworthy?  If you’ve read my book Don’t Embarrass The Family, you’d know the FBI reports are highly untrustworthy and see the recommendations I’ve made to improve the situation. But don’t believe me listen to Judge Wolf.

Judge Mark Wolf in his opinion talked about the reports FBI agents put into their files. He was talking about a report filed by FBI SAC Sarhatt that concerned a meeting he had with Jeremiah O’Sullivan. Sarhatt wrote that O’Sullivan did not think there was anything wrong with continuing the relationship with Whitey. Wolf wrote, after noting O’Sullivan never saw the report, that: “This, among other things, suggests that the memorandum was written in meaningful measure for the protection of the FBI and raises questions concerning whether O’Sullivan would dispute Sarhatt’s characterization of his comments. Exhibit 3 may be an example of what has been characterized as “Bureau-speak.” It has been written that:

The Bureau employs two separate languages. The first, for internal and interdepartmental communications, may be called Bureau-speak. It is cryptic, telegraphic and routine and its purpose is less to communicate than to anticipate, to make a record for future protection. “You can have a conversation with an agent,” says Edwin O. Guthman, [Attorney General] Kennedy’s press secretary, “and when it is over he will send a memo to the files. Any relation between the memo and what was said in the conversation may be purely coincidental. You would think you were at different meetings.””

O’Sullivan described his meeting with Sarhatt a little differently He said Sarhatt asked him to come to his office. When he got there Sarhatt “berated me up and down, swearing and yelling as loud as he could  about how I should never have associated myself with the state police and gone against FBI informants.”

Judge Wolf himself so distrusted the FBI that he consented to an interview only on the condition he could review what the agents wrote down. This, as we know, is a privilege not available to any of us. If we wanted to review the FBI report about what we said we’d be told a flat out “no”, we’d not be interviewed but instead would get a piece of paper making us go to the grand jury.

The written reports filed by FBI agents tell the story the agent wants to tell which may have no relation the truth. There’s an FBI saying throughout the Bureau that “if it’s not written down it doesn’t exist” The corollary of that is what exists is what is written down. The FBI agents are taught that nothing in their reports should embarrass the FBI or as Judge Wolf said they should be “for the protection of the FBI.”

Yet we see in Judge Wolf’s decision that he often refers to FBI reports as if they are truthful when he has expressed his doubt about their truthfulness. In the FBI reports we have the same quandary as we have with the lying gangsters, how do we tell what is truthful when there is no objective evidence to support either the FBI reports or the gangsters?

This is a serious problem we have in this country. Neither the Federal Judiciary or Congress is willing to take the steps necessary to insure the FBI reports are truthful and verified. Because of that all we can say without outside evidence is that the FBI said Whitey was an informant in September 1975 but there is no proof Whitey was one at that time.

7 thoughts on “Whitey Bulger’s Marriage To The FBI May Have Been Consented To On One Side

  1. Matt,
    Ok, so this is all making so much more sense to me now. Granted, I have been reading your blogs for a few years now and only now and beginning to comment on them – I trust your knowledge as a DA and a “man of the law” 100%. I am not that familiar with legal anything, but you are painting a picture that seems to border on the upsurd. I cannot believe that a Federal Law Enforecement agency would be allowed to conduct their “business” like this. I thought the whole reasoning behind our law system was based on PROVING beyond a reasonable doubt. How is this the case with Bulger’s files being so one sided? So an interpretation of what was said holds up in court for the FBI? So for 20 yrs, a person as smart and cunning as Bulger would not think to get something, anything to hold up in court one day against the G-Men? He could not have been that nieve! Also, since many things seemed to have operated on just word and not writing, what makes Flemmi and informant? Or is that now under scrutiny? I know he is a habitual liar, but surely these guys MUST have figured there was a chance of things going sour one day. Seems like this relationship they had with the FBI was the only thing they didnt take seriously. Why? Crazy…. Anyway, wanted to point out a Globe article that i found today on Boston.com that focuses on a new book by Kevin Cullen and Shelley Murphy. Sounds somewhat interesting and I am trying to read everything and anything re: Bulger before the trial commences. FYI – Matt, I am planning on getting your book as well. Thanks for always enlightening me and enjoy the warm weather. Cheers!

  2. Your post today brings up issues that I have been trying to get sorted out in my situation. I have proof of communications of complaints that I made with the Boston FBI (to include one meeting in 1994 where the agent demanded, and took all my original files). But when I was subpoenaed by the Organized Crime Task Force from Eastern Pa to testify in September 1996,in a case related to my complaints, I found out two things: The first was all my communications with respect to my complaints, which included the mention of John Iuele, according to the FBI agent that I had met with in 1994, had been shredded; and, the second was that I was subpoenaed as a suspect and not a victim. Clearly, the Boston FBI Office must have referred me to the PA Organized Crime Task Force, or how else would they have known to subpoena me? I spell this out in Installment #2 of No Witness=No Case that is posted on nhjustice.net.

    If according to your posting this behavior (that I describe above) is a known practice of the FBI, then how is the Court to know whether the prosecutor and its witnesses are not committing a fraud upon the Court in this instant case?

    1. Jean:
      You make good points. What you have experienced is precisely what we are faced with when we have a super police force that has no one to answer to. You cooperated with the FBI and end up with your reports missing, secret FBI reports being filed about you (have you used the Freedom of Information Act to see what the FBI has said about you) and you’ve felt you’ve been turned from a cooperating person to a suspect. We deserve better in America and the reason why we’re not getting it is the FBI has become the big monster that controls our Congress rather than the other way around.
      Why the Courts tolerate it is because they too are intimidated by the FBI and dare not take it on. It would be too hare and take too much time away from other things. How can Judge Wolf know which reports are the truth or the prosecutors know what statements by the gangsters are the lies. Your guess is as good as mine. I think you can get an idea of how things stand when you hear what long time FBI Agent Paul Rico said when asked how he could let Joe Barboza commit perjury when he testified. I’d say it is pretty much the attitude of lots of people involved in the justice system. He said: “I feel that we have a justice system and however it plays out it plays out, I don’t think we convict everybody that is guilty and I don’t think we let everybody go that’s innocent.” I other words let any thing into evidence and see what happens. It all comes down to a great fiction: that somehow a jury can tell when a liar is telling the truth.

  3. Matt: things do get murkier and murkier; it’s like we’re caught in a whirlpool, a maelstrom, a blizzard of conflicting views and conflicting evidence.
    Remember Yeats’ poem, The Second Coming:
    It begins:
    “Turning and turning in the widening gyre
    The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
    Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
    Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
    The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
    The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
    The best lack all conviction, while the worst
    Are full of passionate intensity.”
    The dim and dismal views you have of the FBI, I have of federal prosecutors, especially Fred Wyshak!
    I agree with your recommendations on improving the FBI. I cannot understand why in this digital age they don’t digitally record interviews. It would cost less and take up less space than written records.
    On a different matter: I have a question from my confidential source: How do you account for federal prosecutors, the DA and the State Police not asking Boston Mafia Kingpin Frank “Cadillac” Salemme about heroin distribution in the Boston area, when hundreds die annually of narcotics overdoses in the Boston area alone?
    Would that we had tape recordings of all the interviews with gangsters by the State Police, FBI and federal prosecutors. Do you think we’d see a lot of shifting narratives? Shifting narratives from shifty gangsters?
    One final thought from a guy who’s tired of shoveling snow: I hope John Connolly writes a book.

    1. Bill:
      A digital recording will set forth what the witness says. The FBI likes to put its spin on anything someone says. FBI agents believe what the witness said is more accurate when it is written up later in their office after they look at what they need the witness to say. They they return to the befuddled witness and refresh his memory on what he said. If they had to record the interview they wouldn’t be able to do this. Everyone knows it, the judges and Congress, but no one does anything about it. That’s the type of country they want.
      The DA and state police were working for the feds. The federal prosecutors deal with Salemme was he only had to give them evidence against Connolly and Whitey and any bad cops. He did not have to give them anything against his Mafia buddies. Asking him about heroin would implicate his Mafia friends so he wasn’t asked.
      You’d never have the tape recordings for the reason set forth initially. Therefore we have to face the shifting stories and the lies. Connolly can’t write a book, he’s in prison.

  4. Matt, I came across this comment on David Boeri’s article. First is the opening sentences of Boeri’s article; next is the comment. Both Boeri and the commentator have a very dim view of federal prosecutors:
    “The Martyrdom of John Connolly by Dave Boeri
    Corrupt FBI agent John Connolly earned infamy—and a 10-year jail sentence—for aiding über-gangster Whitey Bulger. But in his upcoming murder trial, the real bad guys will be the ones given sweetheart deals to present their shaky testimony against him. (The prosecutors are no angels, either.) The case against the case against a man the Justice Department seems set on punishing for others’ sins.
    By David Boeri
    September 2008”
    COMMENT ON DAVID BOERI’S ARTICLE in the Boston Magazine of September 2008: “Your article, for once, depicts a fairly candid discussion of the federal criminal prosecution business in Boston. Fred Wyshak and his office do not walk on water and are in the business of selling “faction” (a little fact surrounded by fiction) to further their careers. As someone who was prosecuted in the 3rd series of Bulger related indictments, when they did not have a crime within the five-year statute of limitations, those (expletive) framed me with perjury to make a case. Now they are fighting to keep secret their cover-up of highly exculpatory evidence that includes federal Customs/DOJ investigations into the lead agents and Wyshak for obstruction and suborning perjury from informants to frame targets of Weeks/Murray/Teamsters case. (See US v. Cashman, 02-10015-DPW, sealed docket nos. 49-50, 55-63, 75-77, 83-91, 100-108.) It should be noted that some of the federal judges in Boston assigned to these cases were former federal prosecutors who are part of the same government club.”
    Many have raised serious issues about the federal prosecutors’ conduct, including the 100 FBI agents who’ve demanded an investigation of the Boston Office of the DOJ. With all the murkiness in these cases, it’s hard not to have a “reasonable doubt” about all the charges!

    1. Bill:
      Boeri was doing all right until he decided Father Drinan was part of Whitey’s evil empire. Cullen and Murphy add in John McCormack. Anyone who helped Whitey in his youth is suspect. Most of them are dead but if they weren’t the feds would be out rounding them up or at least trying to get some gangster to testify against them. Don’t quite understand the comment from the person who was “framed.”

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