Boston mob boss James “Whitey” Bulger’s items are up for auction
James “Whitey” Bulger, the notorious Boston Irish mob boss, who evaded arrest for more than 16 years, will have his personal items auctioned Saturday.
The federal government is auctioning Bulger’s belongings in an attempt to raise money for victims’ families, who were killed by Bulger and his gang.
Among the items to bid on include, a rat-shaped cup that Bulger used as a pencil holder, a sterling silver “skull ring,” and a replica Montreal Canadiens Stanley Cup Championship ring. Bulger was sentenced to life in prison in 2013 for a litany of crimes, as well as his role in 11 murders.
Here’s a look at the life of longtime fugitive James “Whitey” Bulger, who was found guilty of racketeering and involvement in 11 killings.
Personal: Birth date: September 3, 1929
Birth place: Dorchester, Massachusetts
Birth name: James Joseph Bulger, Jr.
Father: James Joseph Bulger, Sr., a laborer
Mother: Jane Veronica “Jean” (McCarthy) Bulger
Children: with Lindsey Cyr: Douglas Glenn Cyr, 1967-1973
Military Service: U.S. Air Force, 1948-1952
Other Facts: Nicknamed “Whitey” as a child because of his white-blond hair.
His son, Douglas Cyr, died at age six from Reye’s Syndrome, an allergic reaction to aspirin.
Federal prosecutors say Bulger led south Boston’s Winter Hill gang from the late 1970s through the mid-1990s.
Timeline: 1943 – Arrested for the first time, at age 14 for larceny.
1956-1965 – Serves time in federal prison for armed robbery.
Early 1970s – Climbs the ranks of the Winter Hill gang, the preeminent Irish-American crime syndicate in the Boston area.
1975 – Agrees to become an FBI informant, providing information about the Italian Mafia in exchange for protection from prosecution.
1979 – Multiple Winter Hill gang members are arrested for race-fixing, including the leader Howie Winter, which allows Bulger to assume leadership.
January 1995 – Flees an impending racketeering indictment after former FBI handler John Connolly tips Bulger off to the charges, an event that helped inspire the Oscar-winning 2006 drama “The Departed.”
1999 – Added to the FBI’s Top 10 Most Wanted list, facing charges in 19 murders.
June 22, 2011 – After 16 years on the lam, is arrested in Santa Monica, California, along with his girlfriend Catherine Elizabeth Greig.
July 6, 2011 – Pleads not guilty to a 32-count racketeering indictment, including involvement in 19 killings, and also extortion, money-laundering and weapons charges. If convicted, he may face life in prison.
August 18, 2011 – Bulger’s companion, Catherine Elizabeth Greig, pleads not guilty to charges of harboring and concealing Bulger.
March 14, 2012 – Catherine Greig pleads guilty to one charge of conspiracy to harbor a fugitive and two counts of identity theft.
June 12, 2012 – Greig is sentenced to eight years in federal prison for identity fraud and helping Bulger avoid capture.
March 4, 2013 – A federal judge rules that Bulger can be prosecuted for murders committed after agreeing to an immunity deal with the FBI in the 1970s. Bulger’s attorneys were hoping to have the case dismissed because of the immunity agreement.
March 14, 2013 – Federal Judge Richard Stearns is removed from the Bulger case by the First Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston. Stearns had previously worked for the criminal division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Boston when Bulger’s ran organized crime in the city. Bulger’s defense had argued that Judge Stearns would not be impartial.
March 15, 2013 – U.S. District Court Judge Denise J. Casper is named to replace Judge Richard Stearns.
May 2, 2013 – Judge Casper rules that Bulger cannot claim that federal law enforcement officials granted him immunity from prosecution at his upcoming trial.
May 17, 2013 – An appeals court upholds Catherine Greig’s eight-year prison sentence.
June 4, 2013 – Jury selection begins in Bulger’s trial.
June 12, 2013 – Opening statements begin.
August 2, 2013 – Bulger announces he won’t testify because he “didn’t get a fair trial” and the trial was “a sham.”
August 5, 2013 – Closing arguments are presented, and the jury begins deliberations the next day.
August 12, 2013 – After deliberating more than 32 hours over five days, the jury finds Bulger guilty on 31 of 32 counts, including federal racketeering and conspiracy to commit federal racketeering.
November 14, 2013 – Is sentenced to two life terms plus five years.
May 28, 2014 – Former FBI agent John Connolly’s 2008 conviction for the 1982 murder of a businessman associated with Bulger and the Winter Hill gang is overturned. The court vacates the conviction because of faulty jury instructions.
August 14, 2014 – Attorneys for Bulger file a formal appeal of his 2013 conviction.
September 18, 2014 – CNN Films’ “Whitey: United States of America v. James J. Bulger” premieres on CNN.
July 29, 2015 – A Florida appeals court reverses its May 2014 decision and reinstates former FBI agent John Connolly’s 2008 conviction.
September 18, 2015 – The biopic “Black Mass,” starring Johnny Depp as Whitey Bulger, hits theaters.
February 3, 2016 – Catherine Greig pleads guilty to one count of federal criminal contempt, for failing to provide information on others who might have helped Bulger while he avoided authorities for 16 years.
March 4, 2016 – A federal appeals court rejects Bulger’s request for a new trial.
April 28, 2016 – Bulger’s longtime girlfriend, Catherine Greig, is sentenced to 21 months in prison for contempt of court. Greig is already serving an eight-year sentence for helping Bulger avoid police.