A jury today found notorious Boston gangster James "Whitey" Bulger guilty of 31 of the 32 racketeering and murder charges brought against him, including money laundering and 11 killings. The jury also ruled, however, that some of the homicide allegations pinned to Bulger remain "not proven."
Bulger, who was charged with having a hand in 19 murders as head of the Winter Hill Gang, was arrested in 2011 in Santa Monica, California. After Bulger's trial began in June of this year, allegations came out claiming that Bulger had been an FBI informant during at least part of his reign of terror in Boston. Bulger vehemently denies the claims, saying that while he paid for information from crooked Feds, he never supplied secrets of his own.
Many of Bulger's former henchmen testified against him throughout the trial, leading to this genius courtroom exchange between Bulger and former associate Kevin Weeks, who testified he had helped Bulger murder five people:
Bulger: You suck.
Weeks: Fuck you okay.
Bulger: Fuck you too.
Weeks: What do you want to do?
The court: Hey.
The trial had been a strange one all around. Besides the outbursts and all the gangster mythologizing, it included the murder of a man named Stephen "Stippo" Rakes, an enemy of Bulger's who had asked prosecutors to let him testify against the crime boss. Rakes turned up dead, but authorities have ruled his homicide as being related to an incident separate from Bulger's trial.
Earlier this month, Bulger, who alleged that he'd once been granted immunity for his crimes by a now-dead federal prosecutor, told Judge Denise Casper that he would not testify in his own defense because Casper would not allow him to share is immunity claim.
"I do disagree, and that’s the way it is," Bulger told her. "And my thing is, as far as I’m concerned, I didn’t get a fair trial, and this is a sham, and do what youse want with me. That’s it. That’s my final word.’"
Bulger's sentencing date has been set for November 13. At 83, it's likely he will spend the rest of his life in jail.