Ex-FBI agent charged with lying during ‘Whitey’ Bulger trial

1 May 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Ex-FBI Agent Accused of Lying at James ‘Whitey’ Bulger Trial.

BOSTON—A federal indictment unsealed Thursday accuses a former Federal Bureau of Investigation agent of lying on the stand while testifying in the trial of notorious Boston gangster James “Whitey” Bulger two years ago.Retired FBI supervisor Robert Fitzpatrick is due to be arraigned Thursday at John Joseph Moakley Federal Courthouse for lying under oath during the 2013 Whitey Bulger trial, according to the Associated Press.Prosecutors say that in court proceedings dating back to 1998, Fitzpatrick has falsely depicted himself as a whistleblower who attempted to end the notorious gangster’s relationship with the FBI “During the course of that testimony, Fitzpatrick made false material declarations designed to aid Bulger’s defense,” the indictment stated. “Fitzpatrick also made false material declarations to enhance his own credibility as a former FBI official by making false claims about his professional accomplishments as an FBI agent.” Fitzpatrick, 75, faces six counts of perjury and six counts of obstruction of justice related to his testimony in the Bulger trial.

Robert Fitzpatrick, a former assistant special agent in charge for the FBI’s Boston office in the 1980s, was the first defense witness called during Mr. The indictment charged, among other things, that Fitzpatrick lied when he said he had found the rifle used to kill Martin Luther King Jr on April 4, 1968. Robert Fitzpatrick, 75, of Rhode Island, “did corruptly endeavor to influence, obstruct, and impede the due administration of justice in that he knowingly made a false and misleading declaration … before a federal court in the District of Massachusetts, with intent to obstruct and impede the Bulger trial,” a federal indictment alleges.

During Bulger’s 2013 trial, Fitzpatrick testified he tried to convince the FBI to terminate Bulger as an informant, because Bulger didn’t appear to be helping the FBI’s mission to gather information on the Mafia. Bulger, 84, was convicted in August 2013 of dozens of crimes stemming from his bloody reign over Boston’s underworld as the head of the Winter Hill Gang. WBZ Legal Analyst Harry Manion says that Fitzpatrick’s testimony was designed to assist the defense, and the new charges do not put the Bulger verdict in jeopardy.

Fitzpatrick told jurors that in 1981, about six years after Bulger began working an informant, he was given the task of assessing the mobster to see if he was providing the FBI with useful information. He was used by the defense team to describe corruption within the FBI in Boston at the time and to try to undermine the contention that Bulger was an informant for the FBI. He testified that in a meeting with Bulger in the early 1980s Bulger told him that he was not getting paid, that he paid others, and that he was not an informant.

The 85-year-old Bulger is serving two life sentences after his 2013 racketeering conviction tying him to 11 murders and other gangland crimes in the 1970s and 1980s. He underwent a withering cross-examination in which the prosecutor suggested that he had exaggerated his work in the FBI and his efforts to unearth corruption. Fitzpatrick said it was because he never used the word “bribe.” Bulger was charged in a sweeping racketeering case with participating in 19 murders during his deadly career in Boston’s underworld, along with extortion, money laundering, and weapons offenses. Prosecutor Brian Kelly’s attack on Fitzpatrick included grilling him about passages in a book he co-wrote in 2012, “Betrayal: Whitey Bulger and the FBI Agent Who Fought to Bring Him Down.” The prosecutor noted that Fitzpatrick had retired years before Bulger was targeted in the 1990s investigation that led to the charges he was being tried on. The government convicted his former FBI handler in 2002 for tipping off a pending indictment, which helped the gangster escape Boston and evade capture.

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