The Ottumwa Courier

AP National

June 28, 2013

Ex-FBI agent faces tough questions in Bulger trial

BOSTON (AP) — Former FBI Agent John Morris appeared sheepish when he admitted under questioning from a prosecutor that he accepted $7,000 in cash and two cases of wine from James "Whitey" Bulger at a time when authorities say Bulger was both a feared gangster and a prized FBI informant.

His embarrassment is likely to deepen when he is cross-examined by Bulger's lawyer.

Morris began testifying Thursday in Bulger's racketeering trial. Bulger attorney Hank Brennan began his cross-examination late in the day, so Morris was certain to face more questions Friday.

Bulger, 83, is charged with playing a role in 19 killings during the 1970s and '80s while allegedly leading the Winter Hill Gang.

Bulger stared intently at Morris as he testified. At one point, he called Morris "a (expletive) liar under his breath, according to prosecutor Brian Kelly, who complained to Judge Denise Casper and asked her to admonish Bulger. The judge instructed Bulger to let his lawyers speak for him.

Morris said he helped protect Bulger and his partner, Stephen "The Rifleman" Flemmi, from prosecution at the request of former FBI Agent John Connolly, their handler at the agency. Morris, who was Connolly's supervisor, said he recommended excluding them from a 1978 race-fixing indictment because of their value as informants on the Italian Mafia. Morris said he spoke with the prosecutor on the case, and neither Bulger nor Flemmi were indicted.

Bulger vehemently denies being an informant. Through his lawyers, he has insisted that he paid FBI agents to tip him off about investigations and indictments, but not provide the agency with information about other criminals.

Bulger's lawyers contend that Connolly fabricated many of the reports in Bulger's 700-page informant file to cover up his own wrongdoing. Connolly was later convicted of racketeering and second-degree murder for leaking information to Bulger and his gang members to protect them.

Text Only
AP National
  • Poll: Big Bang a big question for most Americans WASHINGTON (AP) — Few Americans question that smoking causes cancer. But they express bigger doubts as concepts that scientists consider to be truths get further from our own experiences and the present time, an Associated Press-GfK poll found. Ameri

    April 21, 2014

  • Delay won't quell 2014 wrangling over Keystone XL WASHINGTON (AP) — Democrats sweating this year's elections may be hoping that the Obama administration's latest delay to the proposed Keystone XL pipeline takes a politically fraught issue off the table for the midterms. Fat chance. An indefinite ext

    April 21, 2014

  • After bombs, Boston Marathon under tight security BOSTON (AP) — A large police presence greeted runners and spectators filtering in Monday morning for the Boston Marathon, a year after a pair of homemade pressure-cooker bombs near the finish line killed three people and wounded more than 260 others.

    April 21, 2014

  • 10 Things to Know for Today Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today: 1. WHO HAS HARSH WORDS FOR SOUTH KOREA FERRY CREW President Park Geun-hye says the captain and some crew members of the sunken ship committed "unf

    April 21, 2014

  • Kids get codeine in ER despite risks, guidelines CHICAGO (AP) — There's new evidence that the potent painkiller codeine is being given to hundreds of thousands of children in emergency rooms despite guidelines on limiting its use. That is the conclusion of a study based on an analysis of 10 years o

    April 21, 2014

  • Obama voices skepticism on Russia in Ukraine WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama conveyed skepticism Thursday about Russian promises to de-escalate a volatile situation in Ukraine, and said the United State and its allies are ready to impose fresh sanctions if Moscow doesn't make good on i

    April 18, 2014

  • Late sign-ups improve outlook for Obama health law WASHINGTON (AP) — A surge of eleventh-hour enrollments has improved the outlook for President Barack Obama's health care law, with more people signing up overall and a much-needed spark of interest among young adults. Nonetheless, Obama's announcemen

    April 18, 2014

  • Cyber cops: Target hackers may take years to find WASHINGTON (AP) — Secret Service investigators say they are close to gaining a full understanding of the methods hackers used to breach Target's computer systems last December. But the agency says it could take years to identify the criminals who sto

    April 18, 2014

  • 10 Things to Know for Today Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today: 1. UKRAINIAN MILITIA DENIES CALLS TO FREE BUILDINGS Pro-Russian insurgents in the east who have been occupying government buildings say they will

    April 18, 2014

  • White House updating online privacy policy WASHINGTON (AP) — A new Obama administration privacy policy released Friday explains how the government will gather the user data of online visitors to WhiteHouse.gov, mobile apps and social media sites, and it clarifies that online comments, whether

    April 18, 2014

Obituaries
Record
Facebook
AP National