Today he's known simply as WHITEY
-- the Boston gangster whose epic crime story has become the stuff of history.
It's not just he's a stone-cold, hands-on killer (he faces 19 murder charges);
or his longevity (he's now 83, and his underworld reign covered decades). He's
made history because he brought the Boston FBI to its knees, corrupting FBI
agents so they acted as his palace guard and protected him from rivals in the
underworld and from other police agencies seeking to bust him.
Whitey Bulger has become America's
most notorious crime boss because he's at the center of the worst informant
scandal in FBI history -- and now, in June 2013, he finally goes to trial in
federal court in Boston in a racketeering case that has attracted media from
around the world. It's one of those rare legal spectacles -- a proverbial trial
of a century -- where Whitey himself has promised to take the stand to explain
his claim that the U.S. government promised him immunity against prosecution
for his reign of terror in Boston and beyond, a brutal, blood-splattered legacy
of extortion, loan sharking, drug trafficking, torture and murder. The trial, expected to last throughout the
summer, will take viewers into the heart of darkness, featuring Whitey's secret
control of a band of Boston FBI agents.
Whitey's life story is told in our
new biography WHITEY: The Life of
America's Most Notorious Mob Boss the most comprehensive study of Whitey
to date, covering his formative years as a boy on the streets of South Boston
during the Depression; his bank-robbing years, which resulted in his only stint
in prison, including Alcatraz; his role in the infamous LSD experiments in
prison, backed secretly by the CIA; his rise to power in the 1970s with the
help of the FBI; his sixteen years on the lam as a fugitive from justice and,
finally, his capture in Santa Monica in 2011. It's all there, a biography that
gives readers insight into the making of the monster and reveals the origins of
Whitey's sense of invincibility and entitlement above the law.
And there's more. By chance,
Whitey's saga will unfold this summer on a second stage besides the courtroom.
It's the streets of Boston, where film star Johnny Depp will portray Whitey in
BLACK MASS, the motion picture adaptation of our previous book about Whitey
that incorporates material from our new biography. Barry Levinson, the
Academy-award winning director, will be shifting his cast and crew around the
city to capture Whitey's rise and fall for the big screen while federal
prosecutors and Whitey's lawyers tangle in the courtroom over the mountain of
evidence showing Whitey as calculating psychopath and cold-blooded killer.
--Dick Lehr, co-author of WHITEY: The Life of
America's Most Notorious Mob Boss