California authorities to send mobster to Boston for trial

10:54, June 24, 2011      

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A California judge ruled Thursday that newly captured Boston mob kingpin James "Whitey" Bulger be escorted to his hometown, where the one of the FBI's most wanted fugitives will be charged for alleged role in 19 murders.

Catherine Greig, girlfriend of Bulger, was also ordered to be sent back to Boston, U.S. Magistrate Judge John E. McDermott wrote in a court order after a roughly seven-minute hearing in downtown Los Angeles, during which Bulger agreed to the arrangement.

Bulger and Greig, both of whom had been on the run since 1995, were arrested by police Wednesday night in an apartment in Santa Monica near Los Angeles.

As the head of South Boston's "Winter Hill" gang, which specialized in drug sales, gambling and loan-sharking, Bulger was sought for his alleged role in 19 murders, along with extortion, racketeering, money laundering and other crimes from the early 1970s through the mid-1980s, according to the FBI.

A tip to the FBI's Boston bureau led agents to begin surveillance on Bulger in Santa Monica just before 11 a.m. Wednesday, according to Richard Deslauriers, the special agent in charge of the FBI's office in Boston.

The two-million-U.S.-dollar reward for information leading to Bulger's arrest was the largest the FBI has offered for a Top 10 domestic fugitive.

Bulger, who once worked as an informant for the FBI, had traveled extensively throughout the United States, Europe, Canada and Mexico, authorities said.

Bulger was the apparent inspiration for several books and the 2006 Academy Award-winning movie "The Departed" which depicts a mobster similar to Bulger.

If convicted on all the counts pending against him, Bulger could be sentenced to life in prison, while Greig could be imprisoned for at least five years, said U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz in Boston.

Source: Xinhua
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