Black Mass aka Black Lies

IMG_4074Catching up on my reading I’ve also come across the new book by Lehr and O’Neill on Whitey. Much of it is a repeat if not retraction of some of the material that was set out in Black Mass. No longer do they maintain the position that there was the secret Wollaston Beach meeting where FBI Agent John Connolly first recruited Whitey with the idea that he would help him fight the Mafia. They suggest now that Connolly was going to recruit Whitey as an informant which he did “In a series of meetings throughout 1974, which included at least one get-together that also involved Stevie Flemmi and Dennis Condon at a coffee shop in the close suburb of Newton, Connolly drew from the playbook his predecessors have developed.”

They say that Connolly’s ultimate pitch was “that Boston Mafia underboss Gennaro “Jerry” Angiulo and his five brothers stationed in the city’s North End neighborhood were out to get Whitey . . . that the Mafia had a slew of its own “sources” at the local level of law enforcement, and that Whitey therefore needed a friend at a higher level. The FBI would be an ideal match.”

This is more in line with the story put out by the other Globe authors Cullen and Murphy in their book as the basis for Whitey being recruited by Connolly. The authors don’t even recognize the internal contradiction in their writings. First, during this time period Winter Hill and Whitey, as the authors had earlier written, were on good terms with Angiulo, they had taken on the contract of wiping out Indian Al and his gang. Howie Winter and John Martorano were meeting directly with Gerry Angiulo. The idea Whitey would believe Connolly’s pitch when his partners were in direct contact with Gerry begger belief. Next, the idea of Connolly telling Whitey he could use connections in law enforcement makes Whitey look like a naive waif. Whitey figured this out a long time before Connolly came along.

The overall problem is none of those who have written about Whitey have any idea how it was he first got hooked up with Connolly. They sit around and come up with things like above which are contradictory to other parts of their story. Nor have they dealt with the idea that Stevie Flemmi never stopped being an FBI informant even though not carried on the books as such. They also point to the FBI’s opening a file on September 18, 1975, as proof that Whitey was an informant (the authors have him as a Top Echelon informant at that time but it wasn’t until later he was designated as that) when we know that there is no relation between an FBI informant file and reality.

There is much like that demonstrating the authors mistaken assumptions and misleading information. What prompted me to write this post however was not the above. I’m just coming to the end of Chapter 16 and the authors are writing about the Richie Castucci case. The federal prosecutors with their gangster witnesses have put it out that Castucci was murdered because he was an FBI informant and Connolly tipped of the gangsters to that fact. I’ve previously shown that was not the case in my book Don’t Embarrass The Family.

The reason why Castucci was killed was because it allowed Winter Hill to get out of debt it owed the NY Mafia. Castucci was the courier who would take the money owed by Winter Hill to the NY Mafia. Winter Hill came up with the idea that it could wipe out its $150,000 plus debt by murdering him and then telling the NY Mafia people that they had paid him the money. It lured him to Somerville telling him it had the money, gave him the money, and then killed him. It told NY someone else must have killed him and taken the money. It saved itself a lot of money.

Lehr and O’Neill write: “Castucci’s killing at the end of the nation’s bicentennial year marked another historic milestone. Castucci was the first murder resulting from a Connolly tip — a killing, no less, of an FBI informant who was cooperating against them. “Castucci was the first [informant],” a federal judge later ruled, “killed by, or at the behest of Bulger and Flemmi after the disclosure of his identity to them by Connolly.”

The judge’s quote is taken from a September 5, 2006 decision by Judge Lindsay who noted: “Castucci was the first of four FBI informants . . . . ” with the rest as set out by the authors. Judge Lindsay based his findings on Stevie Flemmi’s testimony. It may be he did not have the information on ripping off the NY Mafia from Flemmi but in any event Flemmi is far from a paragon of truth as we’ve seen.

Lehr and O’Neill then note: “Castucci killing was the “gateway killing.”  . . . Connolly had gone the distance — violating every FBI rule in the book, exposing an informer, and conspiring, in effect, in murder?

The authors leave out a critical bit of information that they should have told the readers of their book. It is this big deliberate deception that makes their product suspect and their motives questionable. The information does not fit into their thesis so they omit it.

They fail to mention that in 2002 Connolly was charged with obstruction of justice by disclosing that Castucci was an informant. This would be the only time the government would have to prove to a jury that was the case. The government failed. Connolly was acquitted of that charge by a federal jury in Boston. I would suggest that is an important piece of the story. I wonder why the authors didn’t think so.


  1. Thanks for your tireless efforts to keep ’em honest on the facts of this sordid mess. It is only through your work that I have realized that Black Mass was as much a vehicle of disinformation as anything uttered by the professional liars at the FBI.

    • 29:

      Thank you for your kind words. Also, I got your email and I’ll respond to it in a bit. But as to your question whether I am semi-retired the answer is yes. My inattention to the blog lately is a reflection of this. Tomorrow night I’m giving a talk on Whitey to a group and I’ve spent some time figuring out how to take the barrel full of worms and put the best ones into a cup. It’s been a hard process for me and reminds me how much a good teacher must work to put together a lesson plan.
      Even when the blog was steaming along and I was making the daily trek to the trial I considered myself semi-retired. As you know I started another blog “hubgab” but find keeping that going takes me too far out of the semi-retire status that I enjoy.
      Thanks for reading and for your contributions.

  2. Matt: a few thoughts:
    1. I’d sign up for your letter-writing campaign, but I’m afraid it’d only be you, me and few cousins from Southie-Savie writing the letters. Hopefully you’ll get “Ten Stout Hearted Men” (or women) to enlist. A suggested letter campaign: Write the FCC to restrict Howie Carr, Billy O’Reilly, Ann Coulter, Chris Matthews et al from engaging in Commercial Speech by selling their books on line. Make them pay advertiser’s fees to do so. Commercial speech can be regulated.
    2. Just a bit more about our corrupt Press/Media, whose corruption of thought, lies and disinformation, has been amply demonstrated in your blog: Last week, the New York Times, which in my humble opinion is a liberal rag for smarty-pants, for Post-Grads; it has a lot of info (background, historical, socio-political; most of it distorted claptrap in most articles—but it does have A Lot of Info); well the NYT printed an Op-Ed column blaming “The Republicans” for the Shutdown; a day later, it printed five (5) letters to the editor about the Op-Ed column. All five letters blamed “The Republicans” for the Shutdown.
    3. I talked to a guy down the gym last week who said he blamed “The Republicans”. His job: a federal white color worker. Someone reported that, in one survey, almost 100% of the voters in the Federal Department of Education voted for Obama. Group Think!! No diversity of thought in the FEDs. (How many political conservatives work for the Boston GLOB?)
    4. I detest the current crop of Republican and Democrat politicos whose only interest is money, power and re-election. They exempt the President and Congress from the full Obamacare plan (Congress gives itself subsidies to buy insurance; no other American gets subsidies; the President’s Office and Staff are exempt (that’s so he’ll sign the bill giving Congress subsidies.) The Pres and Congress make sure certain favored big businesses and unions are exempt from Obamacare (at least for the short term.: Waivers, they call them.)
    CONCLUSION: Throw ALL OF THE UN-AMERCAN bums out! All of them, including everyone in the DOJ. Bring in new idealistic young people whose God is not gold, who respect the Constitution and Laws of the U.S. and who respect elemental principles of Fairness and Equal Justice (not dainty kid-glove treatment for the Congressman’s wife and prosecutorial brute blunt force for the bookie’s wife and for a septuagenarian City Councilor who the FEDs prosecuted, bankrupted and imprisoned for three years after they forced him (a sting) to take an envelope with a few hundred dollars in it. Three years for $1,000; twelve years for 20 murders.)
    P.S. End all joint Press-Judiciary Committees on both the state and federal level: their transparent purpose and blatant effect is “inside trading of info”: they favor, protect and promote each other (“one hand washing the other” while they wash their hands of justice, fairness and impartiality), and both courts and press keep the American people at bay and in darkness. End all joint Government-Private Sector Partnerships. Government should have no favored businesses (especially not the press), no “special” partners (special interests) and no favored “parties.” Cut THE FED WORKFORCE IN HALF; START WITH Wash. D.C., THE DOJ especially AND then clean house at the MOAKLEY COURTHOUSE. End big government, the plantation mentality, the police state, the spy state, and intemperate-judge-ruled America. Oust those judges who think they can “feel” justice like they feel a pea under a mattress. Oust such delusional judges who make findings of fact in a civil case against a person who is not represented by counsel.

  3. Just got this email from Ed Tatro
    Still waiting to take Matt and Ed out sandwiches at Doyles Tavern in JP





  4. I just finished the book. I thought it was very well written and interesting. With all due respect to the author it seemed to go into a lot of detail.When you come back live I would like to go over a few John C points. It was well worth the time to read if for entertainment if nothing else. Good details on how he was caught. The FBI would not win any awards for that.

  5. Off-topic, but a further example of the Feds newest “war on crime” which has morphed into fighting everything:

    Preston, Idaho is a town of roughly 5,000 people that earned brief notoriety a decade ago as the setting for the whimsical film “Napoleon Dynamite.” It is blessedly devoid of violent crime, and has no need for its six-officer police department.

    Yet Chief Ken Geddes believes that Preston’s superficial placidity disguises the potential for apocalyptic violence. At least that’s what he’s saying to pre-empt potential criticism of his decision to acquire a combat-grade armored vehicle from the Department of Homeland Security.

  6. Matt and N: Right on!!! Lehr and O’Neil and Cullen and Gelzinis and Howie Carr perpetually lie both by direct commission and by deliberate omission. Here, Matt exposes Lehr and O’Neil as grotesque liars: they omit two crucial facts: (1) John Connolly was acquitted by a Federal Jury after a lengthy federal trial in 2002 of leaking any information that led to anyone’s death. Not guilty!!! Specifically, not guilty of any involvement in Castucci’s, Halloran’s or anyone else’s murder. In that criminal trial the FEDs put on known serial perjurers (Salemme (subsequently convicted of perjury) and Morris and Weeks (who fancifully boasted having “six FBI agents with machine guns on the payroll”)and even though these career criminals lied through their teeth, Connolly was fully acquitted of leaking any information that led to anyone’s death. (2) In a Civil Trial in 2006 (?) where John Connolly was falsely found by a single judge, Lindsey, “as a matter of fact” to have leaked info, please consider these facts: (A) John Connolly was not represented by counsel in the Civil Trial; and (B) both the civil plaintiffs (victims’ families) and the defendants (the FBI and DOJ) singled out John Connolly and threw him under the bus; both painted him “black as night”; both portrayed him as a “rogue cop”; (no one testified in his defense.) He was everyone’s scapegoat. Judge Lindsey is a fool for falling for the plaintiffs’/cefendants’ false claims that John Connolly led the FBI/DOJ astray. The higher ups in the FBI/DOJ were and are rotten to the core. But that’s “justice” in America. Find a scapegoat on the lower rung of the FBI/DOJ/Homeland-Security ladder and hang that man to the nearest tree; hang the man who is not represented by counsel. Evil persons who purport to be “reporters” are outright liars, flagrantly and unforgivably lying by what they include and leave out from their “books”, “columns” “talk-shows”, their home-spun fairy tales, their calumniating horror stories woven out of venom and their personal biases. Blame O’Neil, Lehr, Cullen, Howie Carr et al who have been lying to the American people for decades. They’ve engaged in a Personal Vendetta against one great American and his family and friends: Billy Bulger: they are part of the evil Zeitgeist whipped up in Boston to get the conservative-hard-working-pro-life-pro-family-faithful-church-going-Irish-Catholic-intellectual-political-leader from South Boston: William Bulger. CONCLUSION: So reflect on (A) John Connolly’s Criminal Trial where the Federal jury acquitted him of any involvement in anyone’s murder and (B) the Federal Civil trial where Connolly, unrepresented by counsel, was scapegoated and lynched by the judge, plaintiffs’ counsel and FBI/DOJ’s lawyers, who failed to provide him any defense. A trial where all sides say before trial: “This man is liable.” Some trial: It makes me sick to my stomach to think about how corrupt our society has become and the press is a co-conspirator in the corruption. Moakley Courthouse is a Temple of Iniquity. The Globe, too.

  7. Everything the authors, prosecutors and judges said about FBI leaks were false. The Halloran case refutes that bogus theory. People killed because of law enforcement leaks is a total fantasy. Were O’Toole, O’Sullivan, Barrett, Connors, Veranis, King and Leonard killed because of a leak. Absolutely not. Everyone in Boston knew Halloran was co operating with the law. OC hitmen don’t make bail on 1st degree murder cases unless a deal was in place. Remember Connolly was found nor guilty of leaks in the Castucci, Halloran and Callahan matters by a jury of his peers in Boston. Yet a dishonest judge gave him ten years for the trivial things he was convicted of. Martha Stewart got three months for similar acts. Turner gets three years for less than a grand and the Congressman’s wife is offered probation for eight million. The Moakley Courthouse is a cesspool of corruption. 2.Read parts of the Flemmi book. Found the claim that Donahue was the get away driver in the Pappas murder interesting. If true Donahue is no victim. If he was an accessory to Halloran’s murder. If he facilitated his escape. If he knowingly associated with a known killer his portrayal by the media as an ” innocent” is deceitful. A Bob Dylan song said ” the witnesses all lied and the press went along for the ride”. He could change the title from ” Hurricane” to John Connolly and the lyrics would fit.

    • N, If the book “Rifleman” has information regarding unsolved cases, which it definitely does, will those be pursued? As a layman, I don’t know the legal technicalities, but is it still possible?