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"Whitey" Bulger Trial: Allegations of murder, pedophilia pervade mobster's racketeering trial in week 6

Former mob boss "Whitey" Bulger, found in Santa Monica after being on the run for 16 years, appeared in a Boston court and pleaded not guilty to charges of murder and racketeering. AP Photo

Whitey Bulger
James "Whitey" Bulger
AP Photo
(CBS/AP) BOSTON - Prior to prosecutors resting their case Friday in the racketeering trial of reputed mob boss James "Whitey" Bulger, the courtroom in Boston was rife with allegations of murder and pedophilia.

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On Monday, Stephen "The Rifleman" Flemmi, Bulger's former associate, continued testimony with details of Bulger's alleged involvement in the 1985 killing of Deborah Hussey, Flemmi's stepdaughter. Flemmi said Bulger insisted on killing Hussey because she was using drugs, getting arrested and dropping their names when she got in trouble.

Flemmi, now 79, said he reluctantly agreed to bring Hussey to a home in South Boston so she could be killed. Defense attorneys suggest Flemmi, and not Bulger, strangled the girl and question his credibility as a witness.

"Jim Bulger stepped out from behind the top of the basement stairs and grabbed her by the throat and started strangling her," Flemmi said. "He lost his balance and they both fell on the floor, and he continued strangling her."

Flemmi said he and Bulger henchman Kevin Weeks carried her body downstairs to the basement, where she was buried in the dirt floor after Flemmi pulled out some of her teeth to make identification of her body more difficult.

"I was in a semi-traumatic state," Flemmi testified this week. "It was very distasteful to do and it was very difficult for me to do."

Bulger has strongly denied killing the 26-year-old. Flemmi has pleaded guilty to 10 murders and is serving a life sentence. 

Later Monday, Flemmi acknowledged under cross-examination that he twice had "consensual" oral sex with Hussey, a girl who called him "Daddy" from a young age, in what he referred to as "a moment of weakness." He said the girl was 17 or 18 at the time.

It was Tuesday when Flemmi accused Bulger of engaging in oral sex with Hussey when she was a teen in the 1970s.

"You want to talk about pedophilia -- right over there at that table," Flemmi said, gesturing toward Bulger, seated at the defense table. He also said Bulger had a 16-year-old girlfriend he took to Mexico on vacation with him.

Bulger glanced over at Flemmi when he made the remark, but the defendant had no other visible reaction.

On Wednesday, Flemmi's fifth day of testimony, the defense continued to hammer away at his credibility, getting him to admit that he'd lied under oath years earlier. Flemmi said that if he hadn't, it would've exposed a corrupt relationship with the FBI and that wouldn't have helped his defense.

But, he insisted, "I'm telling the truth now."

The defense also pointed out inconsistencies in Flemmi's testimony about both Hussey's killing and the murder of Debra Davis, a girlfriend of Flemmi. 

Flemmi insisted that the inconsistencies were due to "inadvertent mistakes" during his testimony.

Later in the week, after Flemmi's testimony concluded, a real estate developer testified that Bulger once shoved a shotgun in his mouth and threatened to kill him and his family if he didn't pay $200,000, and an FBI agent was called to testify about Bulger's 2011 capture in Santa Monica, Calif.

Bulger, 83, is accused of participating in 19 killings during the 1970s and '80s while leading the notorious Winter Hill Gang. He fled Boston in 1994 and was one of the nation's most-wanted fugitives until he was captured two years ago.

The defense - if it chooses to present a case - will begin calling witnesses Monday. Bulger's lawyers say they plan to call up to 16 witnesses.

Complete coverage of the Whitey Bulger case on Crimesider

  • Stephanie Slifer

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