Boston mob boss, James “Whitey” Bulger (81), who was on the run for 16 years and wanted for 19 murders, was arrested last night in Santa Monica, California. His arrest resulted from a tip from television spots that the FBI began airing this week.
Guns and cash were found in Bulger’s Santa Monica apartment where he lived with his longtime girlfriend Catherine Greig (60).
Special agent in charge of the FBI’s Boston office, Richard DesLauriers, and assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Los Angeles office Steven Martinez, released a statement earlier this morning “confirming that FBI agents had arrested the fugitive, who was on the bureau’s Ten Most Wanted list,” and his girlfriend in California.
“Recent publicity produced a tip that led agents to a residence in Santa Monica, California, where they located Bulger and Greig Wednesday evening,” the statement said.
The FBI used Twitter to initially announce Bulger’s arrest.
The arrest is a long-sought victory for the FBI, whose reputation was sullied by its connection to the mobster and whose fruitless efforts to find the fugitive had been regarded by some with suspicion.
Bulger did not appear to be in good health, an official said.
“I don’t think he’s in a position to be fighting anybody,” the official said, adding, “They got a confession from him.”
The NY Times notes:
Mr. Bulger had proved elusive despite a $2 million award for his capture, the largest ever for a domestic target. He was an outsize figure in Boston lore, and there have been reported sightings of him over the years from all over the world.
Though Mr. Bulger and his crimes are well known in Boston, the authorities had struggled to raise his profile elsewhere in the nation. The new public service announcement that began airing Tuesday was meant to capture the attention of older women who watch daytime television and might have encountered Ms. Greig, 60, at a beauty salon or elsewhere in their daily lives.
At a Monday news conference in Boston, F.B.I. agents said the agency had bought 350 time slots in 14 cities to run the 30-second announcement. Those cities included San Francisco and San Diego but not Los Angeles, according to a news release.
Bulger was the inspiration the movie, “The Departed” and Jack Nicholson’s role in the movie as the mob boss.
His brother, “former president of the state Senate William M. Bulger, had little to say this morning when a reporter knocked on the door of his South Boston home.”
“No comment,” said William Bulger, who answered the door in his T-shirt. Informed that his brother had been arrested
The Boston Globe has a series of stories on the longtime saga of Boston’s Whitey Bulger: