Updated news on the Gambino, Genovese, Bonanno, Lucchese and Colombo Organized Crime Families of New York City.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Judge sets date for Whitey Bulger trial

Families of the 19 victims James “Whitey” Bulger is charged with murdering during a reign of terror expressed relief yesterday that a federal judge set his trial for November, after prosecutors angrily accused the 82-year-old former mob boss of “trying to run out the clock.”
Tommy Donahue, whose father Michael Donahue prosecutors say Bulger cut down with a machine gun in 1982 as collateral damage to another man’s murder, said he has fully expected Bulger to die behind bars — before hearing justice gaveled down.
“Some days I’m just waiting for the phone call,” Donahue said about what he sees as Bulger and his lawyers procrastinating. “Everybody can see it. It’s just good that a judge sees it, as well.”
U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Marianne B. Bowler ordered Bulger to face the music Nov. 5 after his public defense team notified her in writing yesterday in advance of a status conference that it could take them more than a year to sift through 580,000 documents and 921 partially transcribed tapes of wiretaps dating back to 1976 they described as a “tsunami’s worth of discovery.”
Attorney J.W. Carney Jr. told Bowler at the hearing he’s considering bringing on more full-time lawyers just to help with the work.
“We expect to get more from the government. We expect to develop more on our own,” Carney said. “They’re (prosecutors) doing their job. I’m just asking for the time to do mine.”
But assistant U.S. Attorney Brian Kelly said, “It appears to us Mr. Bulger is trying to run out the clock so this case doesn’t go to trial. He shouldn’t now try and use our compliance — our over-compliance — to create further delays. We’ve given him everything. Perhaps we’ve given him too much, and it’s coming back to haunt us.”
While setting the date, Bowler said she will “be considerate of any reasonable arguments” against going forward on Nov. 5. “This is a monumental task,” she said, “there’s no question about it.”
Steve Davis, whose sister Debra Davis prosecutors say Bulger strangled in 1981 and buried in a marsh with another corpse, said, “I was pleased with what the judge has to say.”
Former prosecutor David Frank of Lawyers Weekly said it’s “hard to imagine” Carney could be prepared for trial in nine months, and a postponement shouldn’t surprise anyone. “There are few cases that involve this much paper and this many years,” he said.



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