BOSTON (AP) — Prosecutors on Wednesday accused a lawyer for mobster James “Whitey” Bulger of trying to “color the facts” and influence potential jurors in the case by questioning the credibility of prospective witnesses at Bulger’s trial.

In a status report filed in U.S. District Court, federal prosecutors said attorney J.W. Carney Jr., in remarks to reporters, has repeatedly impugned the credibility of government attorneys and law enforcement officials he has said he intends to call as witnesses.

Prosecutors claim Carney’s comments violate a local rule of federal court that prohibits lawyers from releasing information or opinion if there is a “reasonable likelihood” that it will interfere with a fair trial. They ask a judge to order Carney to comply with the rule. Carney didn’t immediately return a call seeking comment Wednesday.

Bulger, the former leader of the Winter Hill Gang, is charged with participating in 19 murders. Bulger was also an FBI informant who gave the agency information on the Mafia, his gang’s main rival.

Carney said in court last month that Bulger intends to testify in his own defense about his claim that someone in the U.S. Department of Justice gave him immunity for any crimes he committed while he was an FBI informant.

In their status report, prosecutor said Carney has denigrated government attorneys and law enforcement while attempting to “bolster the credibility of the defendant and cast aspersions on the government through his statements to the press.”

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.


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