Vermeer's The Concert

Vermeer's The Concert

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Stolen Art Watch, J W Carney Jr Handed James "Whitey" Bulger Brief !!

Judge taps high-profile defender for mob boss Bulger

Former Boston mob boss and accused murderer James "Whitey" Bulger will have a high-profile criminal defense attorney, J. W. Carney, represent him at public expense, a federal judge ruled on Thursday.

Magistrate Judge Marianne Bowler rejected the prosecution's argument that Bulger should not get publicly funded counsel in his pending trial for racketeering, 19 counts of murder and other crimes.

There was no evidence that Bulger had the means to pay for his defense, Bowler said, setting his arraignment for July 6.

Bulger, 81, is the former leader of the notorious Winter Hill Gang, a mostly Irish-American organized crime operation based in Boston.

He had been sought by the authorities over murders committed in the 1970s and 1980s, many of them brutal slayings, and charges of drug dealing, extortion, money laundering and conspiracy.

Carney, named as one of the five best private criminal defense lawyers in Massachusetts by Boston magazine, takes the reins in what is expected to be a lengthy and complex case.

Bulger, who had been on the FBI's Most Wanted List, and long-time girlfriend Catherine Greig had some $820,000 of cash on hand when they were arrested last week in California after a 16-year FBI manhunt.

According to prosecutors, Bulger and Greig were able to finance a comfortable lifestyle during their time in hiding, replete with Las Vegas gambling trips and jaunts to Mexico to buy medications.

But proceeds of criminal activities cannot be used to bankroll a defense. Bulger has said through counsel that he did not want his family to be tapped to help pay for his defense.

Bulger, in an orange prison-issue jumpsuit, was in court for Bowler's ruling and for an earlier hearing, when a federal judge ruled on how his lengthy rap-sheet would be prosecuted.

Judge Mark Wolf allowed the government to dismiss a 1994 racketeering-focused indictment and focus on 19 murder charges contained in a separate indictment, while denying a defense bid to consolidate all the charges.

A conviction on just one count of murder in Massachusetts could send Bulger to prison for life, and authorities have said that focusing on the murder cases could bring quicker justice to the families of Bulger's alleged victims.

Judge Wolf said it was not clear that lumping the two indictments together, as Bulger's provisional attorney Peter Krupp requested, had any legal basis.

Brothers William "Billy" Bulger, the former Massachusetts Senate President, and John "Jackie" Bulger, a retired court clerk magistrate convicted of perjury in 2003, were seated in court, as were families of some of Bulger's alleged murder victims.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Stolen Art Watch, Judge Mark Wolf, Carmen Ortiz, Whitey Bulger, Gardner Art, Art Hostage Offers Sanity Amongst Madness !!

‘Whitey’ Bulger lawyer asks to consolidate 1995, 2000 charges

The lawyer for James ‘Whitey’ Bulger has asked a judge to consolidate the two cases against his client, arguing that federal prosecutors are “forum shopping” as they seek to drop an earlier, less serious case against his client.

Prosecutors, said attorney Peter Krupp, are attempting to “game the system.”

“Such forum shopping is disfavored,” Krupp wrote in a court filing today in which he attempted to get both cases consolidated under Chief US District Judge Mark Wolf.

Bulger, the alleged crime boss who allegedly participated in 19 murders during a vicious reign in Boston’s underworld, was captured last Wednesday in Santa Monica, Calif., where he had been living a quiet life in an apartment several blocks from the beach.

He was returned to Boston on Friday and prosecutors and the defense have sparred vigorously since then, first over whether he should get a court-appointed attorney and now over prosecutors’ decision to drop one of the cases against him.

Prosecutors said Tuesday they wanted to drop 1995 charges against Bulger so they could focus on charges brought in 2000. They said the latter case was stronger, involved more serious allegations, and would bring justice sooner to the families of murder victims.

The 1995 charges, which did not contain murder allegations, were assigned to Judge Wolf. The 2000 charges are assigned to US District Judge Richard Stearns.

Krupp has suggested that prosecutors are attempting to avoid having the case heard by Wolf, who held hearings in the late 1990s about the Boston FBI office’s corrupt relationship with Bulger. Bulger had served as an FBI informant while he committed his alleged crimes.

Krupp, in a filing today before Wolf, said that after Wolf had raised “difficult questions” in those hearings, prosecutors had chosen not to amend the 1995 charges but to include a new set of allegations in a later indictment. The prosecutors intended, Krupp argued, to get the case assigned not to Wolf, but to a new judge.

Saying the more recent case should instead be consolidated with the earlier case before Wolf, he argued that the 2000 charges “are directly related” to the 1995 charges and “involve the same time period, overlapping defendants, and, in many cases, identical or effectively identical allegations.”

“The government’s apparent forum shopping is contrary to the public interest and undermines public confidence in the judicial process,” he said.

Krupp also argued that consolidation would save “considerable judicial resources,” noting that Wolf is familiar “with the relationship between the parties and much of the factual predicate underlying the allegations” in the more recent case.

Retired Lawyer, 74, a ‘Glorified Fence,’ Gets 7 Years in Cezanne Case

A 30-year stolen art saga has ended with a seven-year federal prison sentence for a 74-year-old retired lawyer with dementia who was described by the judge in the case as a "glorified fence."

Robert Mardirosian, a retired Massachusetts lawyer, was sentenced yesterday for attempting to profit from the seven stolen paintings by famed Impressionist Paul Cezanne that he says a client left in his office loft after spending a night there, reports the Boston Globe. The paintings were stolen from a private home in 1978, in what reportedly was the state's biggest art theft ever, and the client, David Colvin, was shot to death in 1979.

Mardirosian says he found the art works in his office loft in 1980. Instead of returning them to the owner, however, he put them in storage in Switzerland and eventually agreed to return the most valuable one in 1999 exchange for title to the other six. However, that transaction resulted in a federal court conviction for possession of stolen property earlier this year, as discussed in an earlier post.

The Cezanne initially returned to its owner, Bouilloire et Fruits, was then sold at auction for nearly $30 million.

U.S. District Court Chief Judge Mark Wolf gave Mardirosian less than the 10 years the prosecution had sought, but far more than the two years of home confinement that Mardirosian's attorney had recommended.

"The only reason I'm sentencing a 74-year-old man in the early stages of dementia is because you were calculating enough to get away with this for 30 years," the judge stated, explaining that it was important to set an example for any other lawyers who might be tempted by opportunities to profit from crime.

"You started as a lawyer," Wolf told Mardirosian. "As far I'm concerned, you became a glorified fence."

The judge hasn't yet decided whether to release Mardirosian pending an appeal.

Art Hostage Comments:

Time for some Art Hostage magic.

To overcome the need for the public to pay for the defence of Whitey Bulger, Art Hostage calls for Whitey Bulger to organise the safe return of the Gardner Art and the Gardner Museum putting the $5 million reward into a fund that Lawyers for Whitey Bulger can use to cover the costs of defending him.

This way the Gardner art comes home, the tax paying public of Boston avoid paying for the legal defence of Whitey Bulger, and Carmen Ortiz can solve two cases in one go.

Judge Mark Wolf, who has experience in cases of high value stolen art such as the Cezanne case from 2008, can preside over this deal and make sure all parties adhere to their word with regards recovery of the Gardner art, paying of the reward and immunity from prosecution for the return of the Gardner Art.

OK, some may argue rewarding Whitey Bulger for the return of the Gardner art is distasteful but remember the reward is saving the taxpayers of Boston several million dollars in Lawyers fee's and of course the Gardner art coming home would be a beacon of hope to come out of this whole debacle.

Perhaps Judge Wolf would be so impressed the Gardner art has returned because of his timely intervention he may excuse himself from the Whitey Bulger case and allow Judge Stearns to preside. The Whitey Bulger team may also not object as this way all parties get something and of course the Gardner Museum and wider public get to see Vermeer's The Concert and Rembrandt's Storm on the Sea again. A further temptation is the prospect of the Boston Public not having to pay the millions in Lawyers fee's to allow Whitey Bulger the defence he is entitled to under the Constitution.

So, to recap, the Gardner art surfaces, the Gardner Museum places the $5 million into an account for the defence of Whitey Bulger, Carmen Ortiz issues immunity for recovering the Gardner Art as well as the case transferred to Judge Stearns and Judge Wolf becomes the hero on all fronts, a true American legend.

And what, you might ask, does Art Hostage want ?

Nada, zero dime, zero dollars of the Gardner Museum reward, clear enough ?

Breaking News:

BOSTON — James "Whitey" Bulger has been brought to the federal courthouse in Boston, apparently to meet with his attorney.

Neither prosecutors nor Bulger's lawyer would comment on why Bulger was at the courthouse Wednesday. He did not have a hearing scheduled.

He is expected to be in court Thursday for a hearing on his request to get a taxpayer-funded attorney.

During a hearing Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Mark Wolf held a private sidebar discussion after Bulger's lawyer said it would be difficult for him to meet with his client. Bulger is being held at the Plymouth County Correctional Facility in Plymouth, about 40 miles south of Boston.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Stolen Art Watch, Whitey Bulger Diary/ Memoir, Carmen Get It !!!

Bulger, in orange jail jumpsuit, appears briefly in Boston court; lawyer question unresolved

James “Whitey’’ Bulger wore an orange prison jumpsuit and kept silent during a brief hearing in US District Court today as federal prosecutors moved to dismiss the 1994 racketeering charges that led Bulger to flee Boston for 16 years

The hearing ended without a ruling from Chief US District Court Judge Mark Wolf on whether the 81-year-old Bulger is entitled to court-appointed legal representation even though two Boston lawyers chosen for the task -- Max D. Stern and Howard Cooper – were in the courtroom.

Instead, Bulger continued to be represented by Peter B. Krupp, who asked Wolf to give him until Thursday afternoon to review the implications of the move by US Attorney Carmen Ortiz to drop the 1994 indictment that alleged Bulger collected “rent’’ from Boston area bookmakers.

Ortiz, in court papers filed today, said she wants her prosecutors to focus solely on a 1999 indictment that includes allegations Bulger participated in 19 murders.

“The 19 families of murder victims have been denied justice for many years because the defendant has successfully eluded law enforcement apprehension,’’ Ortiz wrote in the pleading. ”The United States Attorney is committed to seeing that this defendant, who is now 81 years old, is called to account as soon as possible for the crimes affecting those families.’’

Today was the first time that Steven Davis, brother of alleged Bulger murder victim Debra Davis, was able to compose himself and sit in the same room with the man accused of playing a role in his sister’s 1981 murder.

“You know the expression, ‘It’s so quiet you can hear a mouse?’ ’’ Steven Davis said in a Globe interview. “When he walked in, what went through my head was, ‘It’s so quiet you can hear this rat breathing.’ ’’

Davis was 26 when she disappeared on Sept. 17, 1981, after planning to leave her then-boyfriend, Bulger confidant Stephen “The Rifleman” Flemmi.

Steven Davis, 53, said he was thrown out of the courthouse when Flemmi was tried in US District Court in the late 1990s because of his emotional outbursts.

“I am the explosive type,’’ he said, adding that he expected to be in court only when Bulger was actually on trial. But a law enforcement official he knows urged him to come, so he did.

Steven Davis said he is now better able to keep his emotions under control and is relieved that Bulger is in custody, even though years have passed since his sister’s killing.

“You wait long enough, good things happen,’’ Davis said.

Thomas Donahue, son of victim Michael Donahue, an innocent bystander who was killed as he gave one of Bulger’s targets a ride home from a bar in 1982, was in court both Friday and today. He said he welcomed Bulger’s change of clothing.

“He looks good in orange,’’ Donahue said. Bulger wore his own clothing during his first court appearance on Friday.

“If it was years ago, I wouldn’t want to drop anything, but time is not on our side,’’ Thomas Donahue said outside the courthouse.

He also said he does not harbor any ill will toward Catherine Greig, Bulger’s girlfriend who spent 16 years living with him while he was on the run – provided she shares everything she knows with authorities.

“I could care less what happens to her,’’ he said. “You don’t hang out with someone for 16 years without knowing where the money went.’’

He said Bulger’s claim to have traveled to Las Vegas where he gambled while on the run raises questions about the quality of security in the United States.

“How good is the security in our country if the most wanted man on the planet is bouncing form casino to casino?” Donahue said.

During the hearing, Krupp also asked Wolf to order federal law enforcement agencies not to share information about Bulger and the evidence against him, citing a Boston Sunday Globe story that said Bulger told FBI agents he had been to Mexico to buy heart medicine during his years on the run.

From the bench, Wolf said he had ordered Ortiz’s office to file affidavits detailing their efforts to end leaks to the media.

During the hearing, Bulger briefly consulted privately with Krupp, but chose not to speak. Last Friday, he boldly said he would hire his own attorney if authorities returned the $822,198 in cash they seized from his Santa Monica, Calif., apartment after he was arrested.

After the hearing, which lasted about 15 minutes, Bulger slowly walked out of the courtroom.

Relatives of Bulger’s alleged victims were in the courtroom today. However, Bulger’s younger brother, former Massachusetts Senate president William Bulger, was not.

It remained unclear this afternoon whether Wolf will have the authority to decide if Bulger gets a lawyer at taxpayer expense. Wolf was assigned the 1994 case, but another judge, Judge Richard Stearns, is in charge of the remaining indictments.

Wolf set another hearing for Thursday afternoon, but he also signaled his involvement in the Bulger prosecution may be reaching an end. Wolf oversaw lengthy hearings in the 1990s in which Bulger’s confidant, Stephen “The Rifleman” Flemmi, acknowledged that both he and Bulger were committing crimes while also working as informants for the FBI.

According to two sources briefed on the situation, if the court determines Bulger cannot afford a lawyer, Stern, who most recently represented former state senator Dianne Wilkerson in her corruption case, and Cooper, who successfully sued the Boston Herald on behalf of a judge who said he was libeled by the newspaper, will represent Bulger.

Stern has been practicing law since 1971. His other clients have included Albert Lewin, who was accused of murdering Boston police detective Sherman Griffiths during a raid on a Belleveue Street apartment on Feb. 17, 1988. Griffiths was shot through a closed door.

After two years of ferocious pre-trial litigation that unearthed police misconduct during the murder investigation and in the drug unit where Griffiths worked, Lewin was acquitted of all charges in a trial that was shifted to Greenfield because of the intense public scrutiny Stern’s advocacy helped bring to the circumstances of the detective’s murder.

Cooper’s client, Superior Court Judge Ernest Murphy, won a $2 million jury verdict against the Herald in 2005.

Cooper has since represented other judges from around the country who feel they have been maligned by the media. Cooper has represented at least five other jurists who extracted corrections or apologies from media outlets that include the Concord Monitor in New Hampshire, the Fitchburg Sentinel & Enterprise, and the “Dennis & Callahan” radio show, the Globe reported last year.

Bulger was added as a defendant to the 1994 case in 1995. Shortly before the charges were made public in January 1995, he fled after being tipped off by a corrupt FBI agent.

In the filing today, Ortiz also said Bulger would face longer sentences if convicted of the 1999 charges.

“The RICO murder case not only carries higher penalties, but is stronger both factually and legally than” the 1994 case, Ortiz wrote. “A jury finding on any single act of murder, if coupled with a finding on one additional predicate act of racketeering, will subject the defendant to a sentence of incarceration for the remainder of his natural life.’’

Prosecutors Seek to Drop Earlier Bulger Charges

Federal prosecutors moved Tuesday to dismiss a 1994 racketeering indictment against mob boss James "Whitey" Bulger in order to focus on a later indictment that charged the newly captured fugitive of participating in 19 murders.

But U.S. District Judge Mark Wolf told prosecutors during a court hearing that dismissal of the indictment is "not automatic" and that he would give Bulger's provisional attorney, Peter Krupp, a day to consult with Bulger to see whether he objects to the dismissal.

The earlier indictment, which charged Bulger with extortion, loan sharking, witness tampering and conspiracy, prompted Bulger to flee Boston just before it was handed up in early 1995. He remained a fugitive until last week, when he was apprehended in Santa Monica, Calif., with his longtime girlfriend, Catherine Greig.

Krupp told Wolf the decision to drop the first indictment appears to be "forum shopping" on the part of prosecutors, an apparent reference to the fact that Wolf — who has presided in that case since 1995 — would no longer be the judge overseeing the Bulger prosecution. U.S. District Judge Richard Stearns is assigned to the 1999 indictment, which includes the murder charges.

Wolf is the judge who held hearings in the 1990s that exposed the Boston FBI's corrupt relationship with Bulger and his cohort, Stephen "The Rifleman" Flemmi.

Both gangsters were FBI informants who provided the agency with information on the Mafia, their main rivals. Former FBI agent John Connolly Jr. was convicted of racketeering and obstruction of justice for protecting Bulger and Flemmi from prosecution.

The proposed dismissal of the earlier indictment prompted Wolf to postpone a decision on whether Bulger is indigent and therefore entitled to a taxpayer-funded attorney.

Prosecutors have objected to giving Bulger a public defender, citing the more than $800,000 in cash they found in Bulger's apartment and "family resources," including potential help from his brother, former Massachusetts state Senate President William Bulger.

Krupp said in court documents that no one in Bulger's family has come forward to offer him help in paying for his defense.

U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz said prosecutors want to dismiss the earlier indictment because they consider the 1999 indictment charging Bulger with 19 murders the stronger case. He faces life in prison on those counts.

Ortiz also cited the long wait the families of the murder victims have had to endure for authorities to find Bulger, now 81.

"The 19 families of murder victims have been denied justice for many years because the defendant has successfully eluded law enforcement apprehension," Ortiz said in court documents.

"And given the age of the defendant, there is also a substantial public interest in ensuring that the defendant faces the most serious charges before the end of his natural life."

Ortiz also said the 1994 case could be subject to a legal challenge, namely that because Bulger and Flemmi were FBI informants, they were essentially acting on behalf of the FBI when they committed the crimes in that indictment.

The 1999 indictment would not be subject to that legal challenge, Ortiz said in the court filing.

During the hearings before Wolf, Flemmi testified that he and Bulger believed they were authorized by the FBI to commit crimes as long as they provided the agency with information on the Mafia. But he said they were never authorized to commit murders, which is the focus of the 1999 indictment prosecutors are moving forward with.

Art Hostage Comments:

Carmen Ortiz took one look at the Whitey Bulger diaries, manuscript's etc and concluded, (with a little gentle persuasion from Robert Mueller via Richard DesLauriers), the 1994 indictments had to be dropped otherwise the dirty laundry could include some current serving powerful politicians on a national level as well as drag the FBI and other lawmakers through the mud like never before.

Add to that Carmen Ortiz was instructed from above to keep this Whitey Bulger prosecution out of the hands of Judge Mark Wolf because he is as straight as a gun barrel and will insist the whole truth comes out in court. No wonder Peter B. Krupp referred to the dropping of the 1994 indictment as "Forum Shopping" However, whether Judge Stearns will be more accommodating to the Govt remains to be seen.

Remember its election year in 2012 and the need to keep certain skeletons in the closet is paramount.

The details Whitey Bulger recalled are so explosive, so explicit, they caused the normally cool Ice Queen Carmen Ortiz to refer the matter to higher authority.

God was busy so she spoke to Eric Holder for guidance.

What caused this WTF moment for Carmen Ortiz was the continued references in the Whitey Bulger diaries to "My Friend John Connolly, My Friend John Morris, My Friend Martin Ferris, My Friend Thomas Slab Murphy, My Friend Michael Dukakis, My Friends at FBI Headquarters, My Friend Robert Mueller, My Friend John Kerry, My Friend Edward Kennedy, My Friend Tip O'Neill My Friend etc, etc"

There are also references to the Gardner Heist and the attempts to strike a deal for the safe return of the paintings which failed.

Whitey Bulger takes credit for brokering the deal that saw John Kerry getting George Reissfelder off a 1966 murder rap in the early 1980's and other references to John Kerry.

A meeting with the late, great Senator Kennedy at a Bill Bulger breakfast/barbecue event is recalled and some choice words are reserved from that meeting, which are colourful to say the least.

Talking about guns sent to the IRA for fighting the Brits plays a big part and the revelation senior Politicians knew about this would raise a few eyebrows.

more to follow...........................................

Monday, June 27, 2011

Stolen Art Watch, Whitey Bulger, Drip, Drip, Drip, Rent Controlled or FBI Controlled !!

Feds: Whitey Visited Boston 'Armed To Teeth'

Bulger Came To Boston For 'Unfinished Business'
James “Whitey” Bulger has admitted traveling to Boston on several occasions during his 16 years on the run, according to a government affidavit filed in Boston federal court Monday.

After his arrest, Bulger waived his Miranda rights and admitted that he had been a frequent traveler as a fugitive, prosecutors said.

He came to Boston in disguise “armed to the teeth," because he “had to take care of some unfinished business,” Bulger is said to have told FBI agents.

Bulger refused to elaborate on whom he visited, when exactly he visited, and who was with him on these trips to Boston.Bulger also told federal agents that he visited Las Vegas on numerous occasions to play the slots and claimed he won more than he lost, the affidavit said.

Bulger is also alleged to have said that his brother, former Massachusetts Senate President William Bulger, might be willing to assist in posting bail for his longtime companion, Catherine Greig.

William Bulger frowned when the same representation was made in court on Friday.The information came as part of the government's motion to deny Bulger a taxpayer-funded attorney.

"Bulger’s long time criminal colleagues - Steven Flemmi and Kevin Weeks - have both told investigators that Bulger has been hiding money for years," the affidavit read.

Bulger claims he needs a court-appointed attorney because he is indigent. In court on Friday, he told Judge Marianne Bowler he could pay for his defense "if (she) gave him his money back."

Bulger is due back in federal court in Boston tomorrow at 2 p.m. for a hearing on his request for a public defender.

Greig has also informed the court she has hired noted Boston defense attorney Kevin Reddington to represent her. She is due back in court Thursday.

Cooper and Stern on ‘Whitey’ team

By David E. Frank

After days of speculation, multiple sources tell Lawyers Weekly that Boston attorneys Max D. Stern and Howard M. Cooper will represent James “Whitey” Bulger.

Cooper, of Todd & Weld, declined to comment. Stern, a lawyer at Stern, Shapiro, Weissberg & Garin, could not be reached.

In related news, it appears that Bulger may not get much chance to deal with U.S. District Court Chief Judge Mark L. Wolf.

Hours before Wolf is slated to preside over a hearing in the much-discussed case, U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz has announced that her office is dismissing all the1994 RICO/extortion indictments against Bulger. The prosecution will instead focus its efforts on 1999 RICO charges, which allege 19 predicate acts of murder.

“A jury finding on any single act of murder, if coupled with a finding on one additional predicate act of racketeering, will subject the defendant to a sentence of incarceration for the remainder of his natural life,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Fred M. Wyshak Jr. wrote.

The legal maneuver could spell the end of Wolf’s involvement in the high-profile case, as the 1999 indictments are currently assigned to U.S. District Court Judge Richard G. Stearns.

While Wolf may take a different position on who will oversee the case, an Ortiz spokeswoman said it will proceed in Stearns’ session.

Either way, it is expected Wolf will still preside over the legal-counsel questions on the docket for this afternoon.

Both Stern and Cooper have been named Lawyers of the Year by Lawyers Weekly. They were also on Lawyers Weekly’s “Power List,” a roster of the state’s most influential attorneys.

SANTA MONICA, Calif. — James “Whitey” Bulger may never have had to fill out a tenant application for the rent-controlled apartment near the beach where he and girlfriend Catherine Greig lived out their 16-year retirement on the run, the building owner’s widow said.

“I don’t think he ever filled it out,” Ruth Nourafchan told the Herald. “This was a different time.”

Nourafchan said her husband, Elis Nourafchan, who died several months ago, “did get upset” at a former building manager, who is now deceased, for failing to screen prospective tenants.

“She was very cavalier about running the place, but it ran well, and only once in a while did he step in,” Nourafchan said.

Bulger and Greig lived in the Princess Eugenia building at 1012 3rd St. since at least 1996, under the names Charles and Carol Gasko. The apparent lack of tenant screening, with no credit-check application, would have fit in perfectly with their paper-free lifestyle: They had no land-line telephone, no car and were said to pay for everything, including their $1,145 monthly rent, in cash.

Bulger most likely found the place as most tenants did in the mid-1990s, Nourafchan suggested — by walking by and seeing the “for rent” sign out front.

“This was a big shock for all of us. It’s like a movie,” Nourafchan said. “We had no idea who he was. No idea about the whole thing.”

Question: Why would someone put a for rent sign in the window for a rent control apartment? If the guy up the street is getting $3000 and you're charging $1200, wouldn't you call your friends and family before you put a sign out? Any property manager with a half a brain would know he'd end up dealing with deadbeat tenants once you put out a sign like that. That's NOT how Whitey got this apartment!!!! Whitey had help every step of the way. Since John Connolly has been in the can for the past few years, that only leaves one other likely person, or the FBI protecting their former star witness.

I would suggest that someone,-(any government entity, non-partisan,or courts)investigate the US Marshall records the possibility that they were in "WITNESS PROTECTION".

Guest Column: To Bulger prosecutors: You can’t handle the truth!

By Norm Pattis

“The truth? You can’t handle the truth!” When Jack Nicholson snarled those famous lines in a courtroom during the film “A Few Good Men,” he could just as easily have been reciting lines in Martin’s Scorsese’s “The Departed,” where he played the role of Frank Costello, a Boston mobster, the inspiration for whom is none other than James J. “Whitey” Bulger.

Bulger, 81, was captured by chest-thumping federal agents in Santa Monica last week, and whisked to a Boston courtroom. He faces 19 murder charges, as well a series of other counts painting a picture of him as the consummate mobster. He’s been on the run for 16 years, and lived for 15 of those years in plain view in the California sunshine.

FBI press releases make it sound like the capture of this aged star of its Most Wanted list is a brilliant law enforcement coup. Few stop to question how it is that he managed to elude detection in an affluent community for so long. Both Bulger and bin Laden can teach fugitives everywhere a thing or two. It pays, we learn, to have friends in high places.

The prosecution of Whitey Bulger may turn out to be the most significant investigation of how law enforcement does its job since the Church Committee blew the lid off the CIA and FBI treatment of domestic dissent in the 1970s. If Bulger strikes boldly and without flinching, he should be able to force the Government to make choices about how much truth it is willing to tell the people of Boston, and the American public, about the manner and means by which the feds seek to bring people to justice.

The truth is that the Government lies routinely. It seeks to hold people accountable by denying accountability for its own actions. Despite bold promises of transparency, the Justice Department shares plenty with the former Kremlin: knowing where the bodies lie is as important as knowing the way to the men’s room for the good little boys and girls hoping to hopscotch their way to the top.

Bulger was a federal informant. He was a rat. A tool in the Government’s hands as it sought to chip away at other organized crime families in New England. Just who was his handler? How much information did he give the feds? How much did the feds give him? Asking these questions, and insisting on answers, may well be Bulger’s best defense.

In general, the activities of confidential informants are shielded from public view. Federal prosecutors work hard to keep defendants from ever learning their identities. Efforts are made to build cases without burning these sources. It is the domestic variant of a legal doctrine that justifies resorting to any and all means in the international context, the so-called reasons of state doctrine. But the means, we tell our children, justify any and all ends. Why are we so quick to forget to this when the Government acts?

There is a broad consensus that reliance upon snitches corrupts the criminal justice process. Professor Alexandra Natapoff, of the Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, has written an entire book on the subject, Snitching: Criminal Informants and the Erosion of American Justice, published in 2009. She has testified before Congress. But when you try to qualify her as an expert to testify before a jury about the games that are played with informants, judges won’t let her testify. I offered her as a witness in a New London murder case a year ago. The judge said this scholar who educated Congress isn’t good enough for a jury. Go figure. (Check out her blog on snitches at:

So into court now walks Whitey Bulger, a man with a past, a reputed mobster, accused of murdering 19 and running Boston’s Winter Hill Gang as though he were a medieval potentate. He was an outlaw, right? A mass murderer, right? The Devil’s own agent, correct? He was also a snitch for the feds, a tool Uncle Sam used against its enemies. Just how dirty are Uncle’s hands?

We get the government we deserve. A government that relies on lies, practices deceit, and looks askance at murder is a government unworthy of our respect. Hence, the Achilles Heel in the case of United States v. James Whitey Bulger. How hard will the Justice Department fight to keep us from knowing the truth about the FBI and those who used Bulger as he used them? I am guessing the Government will declare these truths to be irrelevant.

Bulger is in the fight of his life now. The Government doesn’t count the money it spends; it weighs it after taking it from us. And then it lies to us to get what it thinks we need. An aggressive defense of Whitey Bulger might yield an uncomfortable truth: when the Government and organized crime get into bed together, we can’t tell the difference between the two.

Just how much truth is Boston prepared to hear? I’m willing to bet the Government will try like Hell to keep the whole truth, and nothing but the truth from being aired.An odd turnabout that we now depend on Whitey Bulger to tell us truth. I’m betting the Government won’t let him or the Government’s agent tell it. And that might be Bulger’s best defense.

v. ) CRIMINAL NO. 99-10371-RGS
Government counsel and defense counsel have conferred
regarding whether an agreement can be reached to resolve the
dispute concerning defendant Bulger’s eligibility for the
appointment of counsel. No such agreement has been reached.
With respect to the appropriate process to be utilized for
deciding defendant Bulger’s eligibility for appointment of
counsel, the parties also disagree. The government respectfully
urges the Court to require affidavits from the defendant’s
brothers, William and John, before deciding whether the defendant
is entitled to taxpayer funded counsel.
Defendant James Bulger has the burden of proving he cannot
afford to retain counsel. United States v. Harris, 707 F.2d 653,
660 (2d Cir.), cert. denied, 464 U.S. 997 (1983); United States
v. Salemme, 985 F.Supp. 197, 201 (D.Mass.1997). To date, he has
not met that burden. As one district court has noted, “[i]n
determining whether a defendant is unable to retain counsel, the
court may consider whether he has income or assets available to
him from other sources.” Salemme, 985 F. Supp. at 201, citing
United States v. Barcelon, 833 F.2d 894, 897 n.5 (10th Cir.
1987). The First Circuit has ruled that a district court has
Case 1:99-cr-10371-RGS Document 611 Filed 06/27/11 Page 1 of 5
“jurisdiction to make inquiries which are necessary and relevant
to an evaluation of a party’s alleged inability to pay.” United
States v. Lyons, 898 F.2d 210, 216 (1st Cir. 1990).

On the evening of June 22, 2011, the FBI arrested defendant
James Bulger outside his apartment in Santa Monica, CA. During
his more than sixteen years as a fugitive in this case, Bulger
financed a relatively comfortable lifestyle for himself and his
girlfriend, Catherine Greig. Indeed, upon arrest, his rent
controlled apartment was found to contain $822,198 in cash - much
of it in packages containing $100 bills that were bundled
together and hidden inside a wall in the apartment.1
While in custody and en route to Boston, defendant Bulger
waived his Miranda rights and admitted that he had been a
frequent traveler as a fugitive. Bulger acknowledged visiting
Las Vegas on numerous occasions to play the slots and claimed he
won more than he lost.

Bulger also admitted traveling to San Diego and then crossing over into Tijuana to purchase medicines.
Moreover, according to FBI Supervisory Special Agent Richard
Teahan, Bulger admitted traveling (in disguise) to Boston on
several occasions while “armed to the teeth” because he “had to
take care of some unfinished business.” Bulger refused to
elaborate on whom he visited, when exactly he visited, and who
was with him on these trips to Boston. While Bulger also
admitted that he had previously stashed money with people he
1Investigators also found two cell phones and other items
which are still being analyzed to determine, inter alia, the
whereabouts of additional assets.
Case 1:99-cr-10371-RGS Document 611 Filed 06/27/11 Page 2 of 5
trusted, he did not identify anyone who might be currently hiding
his assets.
The foregoing facts are of course significant because they
indicate Bulger may have additional assets and/or allies willing
to assist him in his current predicament. In fact, after being
arrested, defendant Bulger told the U.S. Pretrial Services office
in Los Angeles that defendant’s brother, William Bulger, might be
willing to assist in posting bail for defendant’s long time
companion, Catherine Greig. Of course, if that is true, William
Bulger might also be willing to pay for an attorney to represent
his brother, James Bulger. Accordingly, the Court should require
an affidavit from William Bulger on that issue.
Bulger’s long time criminal colleagues - Steven Flemmi and
Kevin Weeks - have both told investigators that Bulger has been
hiding money for years. In fact, Bulger’s other brother - John
Bulger - was convicted of perjury and obstruction of justice in
2003 after lying to a federal grand jury about several matters
including his role in managing defendant Bulger’s financial
affairs which involved assisting defendant Bulger in hiding
assets in Florida. Specifically, from May 1996 through May 2000,
John Bulger used checks from his own personal checking account to
make the annual rent payments for a safe deposit box at AmSouth
Bank in Clearwater, Florida which had been originally opened in
1992 in defendant James Bulger’s name.2 A federal search warrant
2 The other name on the safe deposit box account was another
long time companion of defendant Bulger: Theresa Stanley. She
has advised investigators of the following: she was asked by
Case 1:99-cr-10371-RGS Document 611 Filed 06/27/11 Page 3 of 5
executed in June 2001 revealed an empty safe deposit box.
James Bulger stands accused of an avalanche of serious
charges. Surely the possibility of being prosecuted for perjury
if he files a false financial affidavit in this case is of no
concern to him - he has every incentive to lie and stick the
taxpayers with the bill for his defense. Accordingly, the Court
should not simply rely on Bulger’s own claims of indigence but
instead should make further inquiry on this matter by requiring
sworn affidavits from the defendant’s brothers, William and John.
Respectfully submitted,
United States Attorney
By: /s/ Brian T. Kelly
DATED: June 27, 2011 BRIAN T. KELLY
Chief, Public Corruption Unit
Senior Litigation Counsel
Assistant U.S. Attorneys
defendant Bulger to sign her name on this account; she never
returned to the bank thereafter; she does not know what was
stored in the safe deposit box; she never received any
correspondence or paid any fees relating to the safe deposit box;
and she never discussed the matter with anyone other than
defendant James Bulger.
Case 1:99-cr-10371-RGS Document 611 Filed 06/27/11 Page 4 of 5
Suffolk, ss. Boston, Massachusetts
June 27, 2011
I, Brian T. Kelly, Assistant U.S. Attorney, do hereby
certify that I have caused a copy of the foregoing to be served
on defense counsel in this case (Peter Krupp, Esq.).
/s/ Brian T. Kelly
Chief, Public Corruption Unit
Assistant U.S. Attorney

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Stolen Art Watch, Whitey Bulger, "My Friend Robert Mueller", Diaries Real Prize For Dept of Justice

Whitey Bulger Working On Manuscript?

BOSTON (CBS) – Was Whitey Bulger writing about his life on the run during his 16 years in California?

It’s very possible, according to a radio reporter in Los Angeles.

Investigators seized guns, ammunition and $800,000 in cash from Bulger’s apartment in Santa Monica when he and his girlfriend Catherine Greig were arrested Wednesday.

Pete Demetriou, a reporter for KNX 1070 NewsRadio told WBZ NewsRadio 1030 Friday that notes, documents and diaries were also removed from the apartment.

“There was a script, as one person told me, and also a ‘big manuscript’ as he called it that, when they were handling it around and moving it around, Mister Bulger appeared very nervous that they had custody of that,” Demetriou said.

“Who knows what that could provide in the way of information or intelligence about his past life or what he may have done in Boston or what he was doing when he was on the run.”

'Whitey' arrest recalls Gloucester IRA gun run

The arrest of James "Whitey" Bulger earlier this week may resonate most deeply in South Boston, but the reverberations can be felt here in Gloucester.

In 1984, on a September night, the swordfish boat Valhalla left Gloucester Harbor.

Her captain, Robert Anderson of Gloucester, had filled her tank with 8,000 gallons of fuel at Gloucester Marine Railways, iced up with 30 tons, and purchased 7,000 pounds of bait mackerel and squid from Quality Seafoods.

Anyone who saw her leaving port probably thought she was headed out to fish.

About two weeks later, the Valhalla stopped in Boston before coming home to Gloucester. The ship was seized there by US Customs officials.

Authorities said Valhalla's crew has offloaded 7 1/2 tons of automatic rifles, submachines guns and hand grenades worth $1 million destined for the Irish Republican Army to another ship off the Irish coast during its trip. While the second ship and weapons were seized and its crew arrested by Irish authorities, the Valhalla was in international waters and headed back out to sea, albeit under surveillence.

Irish officials said at the time that it was the largest seizure of IRA-bound weapons to date.

In Boston, the Valhalla was searched, but no arms except for an empty 9-mm shell casing were found. Anderson and John McIntyre, the Valhalla's navigator, were questioned for hours, but let go.

In April 1986, the U.S. government would accuse Andersen, McIntyre, reputed Irish mob boss Joseph Murray Jr. of Charlestown and Patrick Nee of South Boston of gun-running. Neither Murray nor Nee had been on the vessel, but had flown to Ireland to await the shipment, and then flown back to Boston when they heard of the seizure.

Also indicted was New Yorker John Crawley, an ex-Marine who had been arrested by Irish authorities in September 1984 and convicted of smuggling.

Andersen, Murray and McIntyre were also accused of smuggling 30 tons of marijuana to the United States on the return trip in a British freighter.

Police had Murray, a known smuggler, in custody; Anderson would return from a fishing trip a few days later and turn himself in.

However, Nee, a associate of Bulger's, and McIntyre had fallen off the map.

McIntyre's mother last saw her boat-building son in Quincy on Nov. 29, 1984, when the 32-year-old came to visit his ailing dad for tea. That night his cat was killed and thrown at the family home's front door; he told his mom he was being followed.

Closure of the Valhalla case would come in May 1987.

Andersen, saying he wanted to spare his family the publicity and expense of a long trial, pleaded guilty to exporting the arms, for which Murray and Nee had paid him $10,000, and to importing 36 tons of marijuana into Boston Harbor aboard the freighter Ramsland.

Nee, one of the masterminds of the gun-smuggling operation, had been arrested. He and Murray pleaded guilty to four counts of violating federal firearms and export laws.

Murray, the other mastermind, also pleaded guilty to gun-smuggling and tax evasion, but the government dismissed the most serious charge: racketeering.

The men had faced 22 years in prison and $156,000 in fines. The recommended sentences were 10 years for Murray, seven for Anderson, and six for Nee. The sentences would later be reduced to four years for Nee and Andersen.

Nee would serve 18 months in federal prison. When he was released in 1989, he severed ties with Bulger, saying he was disgusted by McIntyre's murder.

After Nee received early parole, he tried to rob an armored car to fund the IRA and went back to jail for nine more years. He then wrote a book about his life, "A Criminal and an Irishman: The Inside Story of the Boston Mob-IRA Connection," with then Andover school teacher Richard Farrell. Farrell would travel to Ireland with Nee, and to Gloucester, where he tracked down Andersen, the Valhalla's captain.

Based on that talk, "A Criminal and an Irishman" provided the first published account of the Valhalla's return voyage from Ireland to Boston, Farrell said.

"He told me day by day what happened," Farrell added of Andersen.

While Bulger was clearly tied to the Valhalla gun caper, Nee has said the mobster didn't like how passionate Nee was in helping the IRA because the risk in trading guns was great while the profit was low.

"Whitey did have something to do with the Valhalla, but he tried to derail it," Nee told the Boston Globe.

A later Globe article was more specific. It theorized that Bulger had compromised the Valhalla operation, after taking a hefty profit from it, by tipping off the CIA.

However, Bulger clearly felt invested in the Gloucester operation. He first heard of the foiled deal on Boston's Channel 7 News. "That's our shipment. That's ours!," a Drug Enforcement Agency bug installed in his home recorded him saying.

Investigators say then Boston FBI agent John Connolly Jr. leaked McIntyre's identity to Bulger. The FBI agent learned it from either Customs agents the fisherman spoke to the day the Valhalla was seized in Boston or from Quincy cops after McIntyre spilled the beans while drunk during an arrest.

Bulger was so angered by the seizure and the betrayal that he ordered Nee to bring the Quincy man to a South Boston house in November 1984.

Nee has admitted bringing McIntyre to the home, saying Bulger, Stephen "The Rifleman" Flemmi and Kevin Weeks were waiting to "just talk" to the fisherman. Nee said he returned to house to find the three burying the body. McIntyre had been tortured, and Weeks and Flemmi would both later say Bulger shot the man in the head.

Soon after, Connolly would tell Bulger he would be indicted on racketeering charges.

Bulger fled, and his name climbed the FBI's most wanted list.

Of the 19 counts of murder Bulger now faces, a judge found the FBI liable for three. One of those killings was that of McIntyre.

Connolly would be convicted for tipping Bulger off about the indictment, while the role of current FBI Director Robert Mueller as a DA in Boston at the time was never investigated.

A judge awarded McIntyre's family $3.1 million, found that Connolly was the "proximate cause" of McIntyre's death and said the federal government should be held responsible.

Connolly is serving 40 years in prison. FBI Director Robert Mueller is about to retire in September 2011 with full pension and benefits.

FBI Director Robert Mueller traveled to Boston on Thursday to meet and congratulate staff involved in Bulger's capture. Mueller was an assistant U.S. attorney in Boston in the 1980s, during the height of Bulger's reign.

Agents’ Opinions Range from Good to Bad to Mixed on FBI Dir. Robert Mueller Getting 2-Year Extension

WASHINGTON — Nearly everyone in the FBI can agree they were caught off guard by President Obama’s announcement Thursday that he would seek to have FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III stay on for two more years beyond his 10-year term.

What they all don’t agree on is whether it’s a good thing, with opinions ranging from good to bad to mixed. Most agents spoke to on the condition that they not be named.

“”It is wonderful,” said one agent. “It is great for our country.”

But some agents thought it was time for Mueller, 66, to go, and were critical of his focus on certain crimes and intelligence issues at the expense of others. They also have long advocated that a former agent — Mueller is a former federal prosecutor — would better understand their mindset and mission.

“I think it was time for a change,” said one agent, who was hoping the new director would be ex-FBI official Mike Mason, the choice of the FBI Agents Association.

Conversely, he said some of the names that had surfaced as potential replacements concerned him.

“It could have been worse,” he said of Mueller staying.

Another agent expressed mixed views as well.

“I think there are pluses and minuses,” said the agent. “I like Mueller. I don’t agree with everything he does. He’s got the toughest job around. And he’s done a good job.”

The agent said it’s good to have continuity at this time.

“”We just killed bin laden,” the agent said. “Threat levels are up. We’re in times we’ve never seen before. We’ve got wars on two fronts.”

The downside, he said, is that the legislation mandating term limits for the FBI director are “designed to bring in new blood. He also said the term limit was put in place to prevent politics from playing a role in the job, and to keep someone from creating a legacy like J. Edgar Hoover.

“The law was set for a reason. Are we defeating its purpose?” he asked.

Andrew G. Arena, special agent in charge of the Detroit FBI, said: “I think for the sake of the agency, it’s a good thing. It will provide continuity. We’ll just carry on as we have been.”

With a new person, he noted:”You don’t know if someone is going to come in and change the direction” of the agency. “There was the fear of the unknown.”

Konrad Motyka, president of the FBI Agents Association, which had backed former FBI official Mike Mason as the next director, came out with a statement saying:

“I congratulate Director Robert Mueller on President Obama’s request to Congress to extend Director Mueller’s term for an additional two years.

“President Obama’s request to Congress reflects the critical role that the Director has played in transitioning the Bureau to a post-9/11 world that requires both investigative and intelligence gathering skills. We look forward to working with Director Mueller to continue to enhance the effectiveness of the FBI in the fight against terrorism and emerging threats without compromising the Bureau’s established expertise at both criminal and counterintelligence investigations.”

Mike Mason, who had worked under Mueller, said Thursday: ” I couldn’t be happier. I’m glad. He’s got the momentum going on a lot of initiatives and this keeps the bureau marching in the right direction. ”

Mueller’s 10-year-term expires in September. Congress passed a law putting a 10-year term limit. Congress will now have to pass some type of legislation that would allow Mueller to remain for two more years.

Mueller has generally been warmly received on Capitol Hill, and is unlikely to find much opposition from Congress.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Stolen Art Watch, Whitey Bulger, Tip From Iceland, Be Careful of Volcano's, and Whitey Bulger's Living in Santa Monica !!!

'America's Most Wanted' tipster said he saw Whitey Bulger playing chess in Santa Monica in 2008

The host of "America's Most Wanted" said Friday that one of the scores of tips that followed a 2008 broadcast about James "Whitey" Bulger included a claim that the notorious Boston mob boss was seen in Santa Monica -- three years before his arrest there.

John Walsh said in an interview that the tipster did not give specific information in the call to one of the show's operators other than to say a man who looked like Bulger was seen "playing chess on the beach," Walsh said. That information was passed on to the FBI.

Walsh stressed that the Santa Monica tip was one of more than 200 that came in from 20 cities around the country the night of the broadcast.

In all, 16 "America's Most Wanted" shows included segments on Bulger, generating some 2,000 possible leads during the time the crime boss was eluding authorities, Walsh said.

"There was no specific tip," Walsh said. "It wasn't where or how, other than somebody thought they saw Whitey Bulger playing chess on Santa Monica Beach. It's not like the FBI had specific information that he (Bulger) was in Santa Monica."

The FBI in Los Angeles declined comment on the 2008 tip. At a news conference, FBI Assistant Director Steven Martinez, who heads the bureau's Los Angeles operations, said the arrest culminated a "challenging" international manhunt that involved thousands of leads and took agents from Louisiana to London as well as locations around Southern California.

It turns out that Bulger, 81, and his longtime girlfriend, Catherine Elizabeth Greig, 60, had been living for more than 14 years in their Santa Monica apartment, blocks from the beach and about five miles from the FBI's Westwood office.

After developing information from a tip to the FBI's Los Angeles bureau, Bulger and Greig were arrested Wednesday night.

Walsh said people should not underestimate the difficulty of the case or the ability of Bulger to elude authorities who "followed this guy to the ends of the Earth."

As for the fact that he was living out in the open, Walsh said many of the hundreds of fugitives who their show has helped bring to justice follow a similar pattern. "They don't go to exotic locations, they hide in plain sight," he said.

Man says he spotted Bulger lounging in Santa Monica in 2008

Keith Messina said today he was on vacation with his family in Santa Monica in 2008, when he spotted James “Whitey’’ Bulger in broad daylight, sitting shirtless near the Santa Monica pier.

“I was shocked,” Messina said in a telephone interview from Las Vegas today. “I was like, wait a minute, this is him.”

Messina, who is a fan of “America’s Most Wanted,” said he recognized Bulger from the television show that profiles fugitives.

At the time, Bulger was wearing black sunglasses and a gold necklace with a cross, Messina said, and reading a thick brown book.

When Messina returned from vacation, he looked up photos of Bulger online, and his hunch was confirmed, he said. The photos and descriptions matched up perfectly. He decided to call America’s Most Wanted. He left the tip but refused to leave his name.

Calif. cop: I knew he was here all along!

Cop says he saw fugitive Bulger before capture, but no one believed him

It wasn’t quite the Hollywood ending he’d hoped for, but one California cop with ties to the Hub knows in his heart he and James “Whitey” Bulger will always have San Diego.

“I’m from back there (in Boston). I knew it was him, and they all laughed at me,” said the officer, who the Herald reported in 2006 claimed to have crossed paths with Bulger as the former fugitive left a screening of “The Departed” — acclaimed director Martin Scorsese’s Oscar-winning ode to the mob monster.

The officer, who asked not to be identified by name but once worked at the former Charles Street jail, was off duty when the alleged brush occurred. Yesterday, the officer said San Diego is about an hour’s drive from Santa Monica, where Bulger, 81, and girlfriend Catherine Greig, 60, were arrested Wednesday night after eluding capture for 16 years.

“I was two feet from him. I held the door for him. And then he ran,” the cop recalled. “After that, he took off. But he didn’t go far, obviously.”

The man he believed to the FBI’s Most Wanted domestic fugitive hopped a trolley, he said.

“We were actively looking for him for a few weeks,” he said. “I knew the whole time it was him. I was always sure it was him.”

The officer told authorities at the time he pegged Bulger for his “steely blue eyes” and muscular physique, but the Bulger Task Force never declared the run-in credible.

“I was pretty discouraged, that a cop from Massachusetts says he sees Whitey Bulger and no one takes it seriously,” the cop said.

Official: Bulger tip came from overseas

SANTA MONICA, Calif. -- The tip that led to a stunning break in the 16-year-long international manhunt for fugitive James “Whitey” Bulger came from overseas, a law enforcement official said.

The tip came from a woman who was living overseas but had previously crossed paths with Bulger and his girlfriend, Catherine Greig, in Santa Monica, where the couple were arrested Wednesday.

The tipster was watching CNN in the other country when she spotted a story about a new FBI TV ad campaign focusing on Greig. The FBI had announced the campaign on Monday, saying it was trying a new tack in its long-thwarted hunt for Bulger. The woman then called authorities.

FBI spokesman Damon Katz said, “The identity of the tipster and where the tipster is from is not something we are going to get into.”

FBI officials have said the tip came in Tuesday to the FBI’s Los Angeles office. It was then reviewed by Bulger experts in Boston and deemed to be credible. Authorities began surveillance of Bulger and Greig’s apartment on Wednesday, arresting them late Wednesday afternoon, Pacific time.

The couple had been living a quiet life in a modest apartment building just a few blocks from the beach.

Bulger, 81, went before a federal judge today in Boston on a bail hearing after being caught in Santa Monica, California by federal investigators living with his long-time girlfriend Catherine Greig, 60, on a tip from an Icelandic woman who lives part-time in Santa Monica, according to WCVB TV.

WBUR radio reported Friday that the tip that led the FBI to Bulger came from someone in Iceland who used to live in the same apartment building.

Art Hostage Comments:

Well, now we have heard it all, first, an off duty cop reconises Whitey Bulger in San Diego in 2006 and is met with derision by the FBI, then in 2008 a tipster calls in a tip to America's Most Wanted, who pass details to FBI, but again no action taken, Nada, zero.

Then three years later, a woman, who allegedly lived next door to Whitey Bulger and Catherine Greig and is currently in Iceland, sees a 30 second advert for the TV ad's that are going to be aired about Whitey Bulger and Catherine Greig and calls in the tip. Agents respond and arrest Whitey Bulger.

Now the actual arrest. Why lure Whitey Bulger out of the apartment at all, why not use stun grenades and swat team burst in.

Well, the reason is crystal clear because the FBI knew Whitey Bulger had an armoury inside apartment 303 therefore the ruse was needed to take him alive and protect the life of Catherine Greig.

As Art Hostage said before, this was all staged but it is coming apart at the seams.

If it had been kept simple then it would have been easier to control.

Instead we now have an Icelandic woman, who is Volcano spotting in Iceland, calling in the vital tip three years after old Kevin Messina spotted Whitey Bulger on Santa Monica beach.

Still, we are lucky the spin wasn't the FBI found Whitey Bulger's number on Osama Bin Laden's cellphone and called it.

Catherine Greig answered "Hello, the Whitey Bulger residence" and so the FBI knew they were onto a winner.

Alternatively, the Pakistani ISI threatened to launch an armed raid to capture Whitey Bulger in Santa Monica and ask the same awkward questions of the U.S. Govt that have been asked of the Pakistani Govt.

This whole case is surreal, a flight of pure fantasy.

Still waiting for the news the Rembrandt "Storm on the Sea of Galilee" from the Gardner Museum was found rolled up in the Whitey Bulger apartment.

If Whitey Bulger lasts the course and is not given a Lee Harvey Oswald, then we are all in for a roller coaster ride of claim and counter claim.

We haven't got to the part about how Boston cops, FBI, Politicians etc colluded to send guns to the IRA and collectively help fund the IRA during the Reagan years, early 80's.

The IRA Soldiers given safe haven in Boston with the full knowledge of FBI after breaking out of the Maze prison in 1983, Kevin Barry Artt, Pól Brennan, James Smyth and Terrence Kirby

Forget the 1984 Valhalla, the ones that got through are the smoking guns so to speak.

Food for thought: "

If tip came from Ireland rather than Iceland, then that would fit into the wider Irish Republican theme running through the whole James "Whitey" Bulger saga"

To be continued..........

Friday, June 24, 2011

Stolen Art Watch, Whitey Bulger & The Gardner Art Heist

What does Whitey Bulger know about the 1990 Gardner Museum art heist?

In 1990, two men dressed as police officers broke into the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston and stole a Vermeer, five Degas and three Rembrandts.

The masterpieces and four other paintings stolen that day are estimated to be worth more than $500 million.

Two decades later, the case remains stubbornly unsolved. It has been called “the holy grail of art crime.”

But with the arrest in Santa Monica Wednesday of notorious Boston crime boss James “Whitey” Bulger, many in the art world are now asking: Could it provide a break in the greatest art heist in American history?

Rumors have long swirled that Bulger, the head of the city’s powerful Irish American mob at the time, may have played a role -- or must have known who did.

Some have speculated that he stashed the stolen masterpieces away to use as a “get out of jail free card” if he was ever caught. Others think he sent the paintings to allies in the Irish Republican Army to use as a bargaining chip.

The Gardner Museum had no comment on the arrest on Thursday other than a tweet saying, “Until a recovery is made, our work continues.”

Many who have studied the case are similarly skeptical about Bulger’s direct involvement. Last year, investigators in the Gardner case said that there is no evidence in the mountains of wiretaps and other records to link Bulger to the crime.

“He was quite a powerful figure at the time of the heist,” said Ulrich Bosser, author of "The Gardner Heist: The True Story of the World’s Largest Unsolved Art Theft." “But his M.O. was to collect criminal taxes, not to organize fresh crimes.”

As Bosser writes in his book, after Bulger became an informant for the Boston FBI, he helped them take out his Italian competitors, the Cosa Nostra, leaving him the uncontested king of the underworld in Boston. By 1990, his focus was on collecting protection money from lesser underworld figures like bookies and drug dealers.

“To organize something like the Gardner heist doesn’t make sense,” Bosser says.

Still, Bosser and others familiar with the case believe that Bulger may still have important information to contribute. Little happened in Boston in those days without Bulger knowing about it.

“If he was interested, he could have found out what was going on,” said Robert Wittman, the former head of the FBI’s art squad who helped investigate the Gardner theft. “I think there’s a good chance he knows something.”

In Wittman’s memoir, “Priceless: How I Went Undercover to Rescue the World’s Stolen Treasures,” he recounts a botched undercover sting operation to recover several of the Gardner paintings from two French mobsters living in South Florida.

“We were two weeks away from getting the Rembrandt,” Wittman recalls wistfully.

It was one of many occasions in which the FBI was foiled in an effort to recover the stolen art. The only high-profile case more frustrating may well have been the search for Whitey Bulger, which ended suddenly with his arrest.

“There was an entire squad in the Boston FBI office called the Whitey Bulger Squad,” Wittman says.

“They spent 20 years looking for him all over the world, spending hundreds of thousands of dollars a year to find him. The whole time he was in California.”

Could the Gardner heist soon come to a similarly sudden close? The case is certainly on a long list of things the FBI is hoping to talk to Bulger about, Wittman said.

For Bosser, the real lesson of the Bulger arrest is the important of publicity in keeping a cold case alive. The FBI recently launched a media campaign in 14 cities to help determine Bulger's whereabouts.

“Many people thought this case was over,” he said, referring to the Bulger case. “It was the recent publicity that made the difference. When we think about the Gardner case, publicity will make the difference too.”

“Someone somewhere knows what happened to those paintings.”

Capture doesn’t solve Gardner heist ... yet

Now that elusive Boston mob figure James “Whitey” Bulger has been captured, could the mysterious 1990 Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum art heist be the next Hub case cracked?

A museum spokesman said the hunt continues for the culprits, and they have no reason to believe Bulger is connected.

“We don’t rule anything out but ... a lot of people have been on the record saying that they don’t see a connection,” said spokesman Matt Montgomery. “On our part, we haven’t changed the way we are investigating the case. It doesn’t change anything for us. We’re continuing our investigation as we have with the other federal agencies.”

Numerous museum supporters contacted the organization yesterday to express renewed hope the crooks would be collared.

“Now that Whitey Bulger has been arrested, wouldn’t it be great if the Museum’s stolen paintings ... were to be recovered and returned. Amen,” wrote one patron on the museum’s Facebook page.

In response, the museum tweeted yesterday: “We have no info to tie (Bulger) to the theft. Until a recovery is made, our work continues.”

Will Whitey Bulger's arrest lead to recovery of stolen Stewart Gardner artworks?

By the window in the Dutch Room on the second floor of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum hangs an empty gold frame. It once held Johannes Vermeer’s masterpiece, The Concert. But that was 21 years ago, before the painting was stolen along with 12 other artworks by two thieves posing as uniformed police officers.

With the stolen art valued at over $500 million, the theft ranks as the largest art theft in U.S. history. Despite countless tips over the years, FBI special agent Geoffrey Kelly admitted just last year that neither the FBI, the Boston police nor the Isabella Stewart Museum has any verifiable leads as to who stole the 13 artworks, how they planned the heist, or where the paintings and artifacts are now.
That’s given authors and filmmakers fodder for all kinds of projects starting in 1999 with publication of Katharine Weber’s literary suspense novel, Music Lesson, in which Vermeer’s The Concert turns up in a remote Irish cottage by the sea, a remnant of a heist commissioned by the Irish Republican Army. Filmmaker Rebecca Dreyfus followed in 2005 with a documentary titled Stolen in which she identified Boston crime boss James “Whitey” Bulger as a person of interest in the theft. David Hosp combined these themes in his legal thriller Among Thieves, postulating that the IRA commissioned Bulger to steal the artworks to finance their campaign of terror to force Britain out of Northern Ireland.
But Bulger disappeared before he could be questioned about the Stewart Gardner heist after being tipped by former FBI agent John J. Connolly, Jr., in January 1995 that he was about to be arrested on federal racketeering charges. But with Bulger’s capture last night in Santa Monica, speculation has already begun that Bulger may trade information about the theft for leniency, especially for longtime girlfriend Catherine Greig who was arrested with him.
Even if Bulger didn’t orchestrate the theft, many believe that a crime of that magnitude could not have happened without the powerful Boston crime boss or captains in his Winter Hill Gang knowing who did - or where they’d stashed the art.
Of course, Bulger wouldn’t be the first man to confess to the crime even if he didn’t commit it. Career criminal Myles J. Connor made a splash six weeks ago when he claimed to have masterminded the theft (even though he was in a jail cell in Illinois on the night of the theft). Ditto comedian Stephen Colbert.
However, Bulger could probably give Connor and Colbert lessons in fabricating information to gain an advantage in plea negotiations. But can he dupe Geoffrey Kelly too?
We'll see.

Bulger swoop: FBI capture the mobster who was aided by IRA

James ‘Whitey' Bulger was immensely proud of his Irish heritage.

In fact, it was his Irish-American connections that are believed to have helped America's Most Wanted successfully stay on the run from the FBI for 16 years.

Both Bulger's parents emigrated to Boston from Ireland and, in his late teens, he gravitated towards the Irish-American mafia.

As he became one of the most feared men in Boston, Bulger struck up close links with republican groups in the US. In the 1970s and ’80s he is understood to have visited Dublin and Belfast.

When he finally went on the run in 1995, it was these contacts that enabled Bulger to access safe houses, new identities and, most crucially of all, new passports.

At one time, US police feared Bulger (81) had a new identity provided specially for him by the IRA. Police are convinced he was in Ireland for some time in 2002.

So strong are the links that US police now want to determine if he hid 13 prized paintings – stolen in Boston in 1990 – in Ireland. The paintings include a Rembrandt, a Vermeer, five Degas drawings and a Manet portrait.

The FBI, via Interpol, had regularly been in contact with gardai over suspicions Bulger may have spent some time holidaying in Ireland.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Stolen Art Watch, Whitey Bulger Arrested Santa Monica

James 'Whitey' Bulger, infamous Boston mobster on the lam for 16 years, busted outside Los Angeles

Notorious Boston Mob kingpin James "Whitey" Bulger has finally been busted near Los Angeles, ending a 16-year manhunt that had proved a major embarrassment for the FBI.

The Feds finally caught up with the 81-year-old fugitive Wednesday at a Santa Monica home where he was living with his long-time gal-pal Catherine Greig.

The arrest comes days after the FBI launched a renewed publicity campaign to locate the long-missing mobster, which led to a key tip, officials said.

Bulger had been living on the top floor of The Princess Eugenia, a three-story, 28-unit building just blocks from a bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean.

Neighbors said that while Greig was friendly, Bulger was a surly, unfriendly figure in the building."He was nasty," said Barbara Gluck. "At one point \[Greig\] said \[Bulger\] has a rage issue."

Both are scheduled to appear in Los Angeles federal court Thursday.

Bulger - the subject of numerous books and an inspiration for Jack Nicholson's character in the 2006 film, "The Departed" - faces charges of murder, conspiracy to commit murder, narcotics distribution, extortion and money laundering. Greig, 60, will be charged with harboring a fugitive.Bulger was on the FBI's "Ten Most Wanted" list for his alleged role in 19 murders from his days running the Winter Hill Gang in Boston, which prosecutors said led a reign of terror for nearly 25 years.

At the same time, Bulger served as a high-level FBI informant.

Nicknamed "Whitey" for his striking shock of platinum hair, Bulger went on the run in 1995. As the manhunt for him continued, the FBI received tips from around the world, none of which were ever confirmed.

Adding a touch of intrigue to his story, Bulger's younger brother, William, became one of the most powerful politicians in Massachusetts, rising to the head of the state senate for 17 years and running the University of Massachusetts.The FBI tried its best to recreate Bulger's look as he aged. (FBI)

He declined to comment to the Boston Globe on his brother's arrest.

The FBI's media campaign had focused on Greig, and featured a 30-second TV ad in 14 markets the pair were thought to possibly be living.The ads aired on TV shows popular with women around Greig's age and pointed out that she had had several plastic surgeries and liked to go to beauty salons.

LOS ANGELES — Boston mob boss James "Whitey" Bulger spent almost all of his 16 years on the lam in the same Santa Monica apartment complex, paying his rent in cash every month while he and his girlfriend hid from one of the biggest manhunts in U.S. history, the property managers said Thursday.

The managers, who asked their names not be used because they didn't want additional attention from the media, told The Associated Press on Thursday that the couple moved in around 1996.

The FBI finally caught the 81-year-old Bulger on Wednesday living on the third floor of the Princess Eugenia, a three-story, 28-unit building of one- and two-bedroom apartments three blocks from a bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean. He lived with longtime girlfriend Catherine Greig, just days after the government began circulating pictures of her on daytime TV in a new campaign to find the feared crime boss.

The arrest was based on a tip from the campaign, the FBI said without giving details.

The managers recalled the couple, who went by the names Charles and Carol Gasko, as ideal tenants who always paid their rent on time. Santa Monica property records show the apartment had a rent-controlled rate of $1,145 a month.

The managers were shocked by news of the arrest and recalled the Gaskos as sweet people who seemed concerned for the wellbeing of others.

In one instance, the man who called himself Charles Gasko gave a worker at the 28-unit apartment building his flashlight because he was concerned about her crossing the road after she finished her shift at night.

A woman who lived across the hall from crime boss James "Whitey" Bulger and his girlfriend, Catherine Greig, in Santa Monica said the 81-year-old crime boss appeared to be mentally deteriorating. Barbara Gluck said Greig told her that Bulger was suffering from dementia or Alzheimer's disease.

Art Hostage Comments:

So much to reveal !!!

Art Hostage knew Whitey Bulger was being targeted at the same time Osama Bin Laden was killed but time was needed for the FBI to create a smoke screen to protect their scources.

The recent publicity was designed to allow the FBI to claim a tip came in as a result of the publicity and not because of their own enquires and the deal made with ********.

Truth is Whitey Bulger has been under surveilance for a while now.

This was the deal, reveal the whereabouts of Whitey Bulger and at the same time the FBI would issue new plea for help, within 48 hours Whitey Bulger would be arrested and the FBI could provide cover for its informant by saying a tip was recieved.

Truth again is this deal to arrest Whitey Bulger has been going for a while and it was how to do it that took the time.

Gardner art is the only thing left in the closet, can't go into too much detail but lets all pray they announce recovery of the Vermeer.

Whitey Bulger had some Gardner Art close by him and had stashed other Gardner art, the person with the Gardner Art awaits the ok to give it up.

Will Whitey Bulger give go-ahead for recovery of Gardner art ??????????????

Art Hostage wrote these two posts leading up to the arrest of James Bulger and Catherine Greig, lucky guess, you decide !!!!!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Stolen Art Watch, Whitey Bulger Diaries, FBI Target Catherine Greig !!

FBI turns hunt for Whitey Bulger to girlfriend

The FBI is set to announce this morning a new publicity campaign focusing on James “Whitey” Bulger’s longtime girlfriend.

Investigators hope that if they find Catherine Greig, they may find Bulger or the whereabouts of his body. Bulger is wanted for the murders of 19 men and women and the racketeering reign of terror he employed to control Boston’s underworld.

The FBI has offered a $2 million reward for information leading to the capture of the 81-year-old South Boston serial killer, who has been on the lam since 1995. The Herald has already reported that Bulger could be dead.

Greig, a 59-year-old dental hygienist, has an outstanding warrant for her arrest since 1997, when she was charged with harboring a federal fugitive.

Bulger, the brother of former state Senate President William “Billy” Bulger, is a wealthy fitness buff, bookworm and animal lover whose last confirmed sighting was in London in 2002, though investigators also have searched for him in the United States, Europe, Mexico and Canada.