Whitey Bulger Behind Bars In Plymouth After Returning To Boston

BOSTON (CBS/AP) – Whitey Bulger was spending Friday night behind bars at the Plymouth House of Corrections.

After 16 long years as a fugitive, Whitey Bulger landed in Boston Friday afternoon for his first court appearance since his arrest.

Bulger, the former leader of the violent Winter Hill Gang, was captured in Santa Monica, Calif., Wednesday, along with his longtime girlfriend, Catherine Greig.

He was flown back to Boston with federal agents Friday.  He landed at Logan Airport around 2:30 p.m.

From there, Bulger was taken to Moakley Federal Courthouse in South Boston.

Watch: Bulger’s arrival in South Boston

Bulger made an initial appearance in federal court in South Boston before Magistrate Judge Leo Sorokin at right about 4:00 p.m. on the 1995 indictment on drug, extortion, and racketeering charges.  That hearing lasted about nine minutes and was followed by a hearing before Magistrate Judge Marianne Bowler in the same courtroom on a 2000 murder indictment.

Greig also appeared before Magistrate Judge Jennifer Boal for a hearing on charges of harboring a fugitive.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Lana Jones reports

Bulger faces charges of murder, conspiracy, narcotics distribution, extortion and money laundering.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Mark Katic reports

Bulger’s arrest came just a day after the FBI launched a new campaign to try and find Greig.

There has been rampant speculation that the timing of the new campaign and the arrest were more than just coincidence. The FBI reiterated today that wasn’t the case.

“To ensure that there is no misunderstanding about the FBI’s search for Mr. Bulger, I want to reiterate statements I made earlier on this matter,” Special Agent-In-Charge of the Boston Division, Richard DesLauriers said in a statement Friday afternoon. “Any claim that the FBI knew Mr. Bulger’s whereabouts prior to the FBI’s publicity efforts this week are completely unfounded. When we learned his location, he was arrested promptly.”

Investigators said they were able to lure him out of his apartment Wednesday evening with a “ruse.”

Specifics of the ruse were not revealed, but according to the Wall Street Journal Friday, agents called Bulger in the apartment and told him “his storage locker might have been broken into.”

Once he came outside, he was arrested.

Inside, authorities found dozens of weapons and $800,000 in cash. Some guns were hidden in hollowed out books and some of the money was stuffed inside the apartment walls, according to the Journal.

Bulger’s capture could become a new chapter in an old scandal for the Boston FBI and others.

Related: Keller @ Large: Lessons From Bulger Arrest

If he decides to cut a deal with prosecutors, he could implicate an untold number of local, state and federal law enforcement officials, according to investigators who built a racketeering indictment against Bulger before he fled in 1995.

“If he starts to talk, there will be some unwelcome accountability on the part of a lot of people inside law enforcement,” said retired Massachusetts state police Maj. Tom Duffy.

“Let me put it this way: I wouldn’t want my pension contingent on what he will say at this point.”

Bulger is charged in connection with 19 murders. He had lived in Santa Monica for 15 of the last 16 years, according to his landlord.

Newly-unsealed court documents released Thursday detailed Bulger and Greig’s early travels following Bulger’s 1995 indictment.

In an affidavit dated April 25, 1997, then-FBI Special Agent Charles Gianturco wrote that Bulger and Greig spent time in New York on Long Island and in Grand Isle, La., in 1995 and 1996.

According to the affidavit, Bulger and Greig checked into a hotel under the names “Mr. and Mrs. Tom Baxter” in the fall of 1995, and that Bulger had also used that name when he befriended a man in neighboring Selden and told him he was a merchant seaman.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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  • Susan Bowen

    I hope he is put away for life. It may sound cruel to some because he is elderly but he wasn’t old when he murdered etc. Some FBI folks ought to be investigated also.

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  • J.C.A.

    A private jet to Logan?
    Were it up to me, it would have been a Southwest jet with 10 stops along the way….and a gun to his temple the whole time.
    I hope they ship him to Florida or Oklahoma where they have the death penalty….AND USE IT.l
    I also hope that the FBI goes down with the ship on this one. You can only let something go for so long…the the PEOPLE (remember them?) get P.O.’d!

  • John Cronin

    What a circus- acting like Whitey returning home was cause for celebration. Wait until he starts singing (if he does), unless the FBI works a deal for him. If no deal, wouldn’t be surprised to see him get whacked “by accident” somehow. The FBI has to be at least as guilty as him. Hopefully, he spends the rest of his life in a cage. Also something fishy about how they found him…… who knows.

  • emom

    I wonder who he will name ,, How far up the chain of people will he go, Will there be state house workers, other political people, just curious, Jail sure, but wonder if he will get a luxury suite with all the perks. And why did it take all these years to find him, really they suddenly focused their search onto his girlfriend and all of a sudden they find him. Yeah very suspicious, in deed…. WHO SNITCHED I WONDER. The tales that will be told, spun and the people to be implicated alone the way will be interesting. I wonder if those he knows are squirming now, worried about what he will say.. This will be a very interesting investigation indeed.

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