Daily Archives: June 29, 2011

Stern, Cooper May Not Represent Bulger After All

Published June 29, 2011

After appearing in court yesterday, many assumed that a pair of high-profile attorneys were poised to form the defense team for reputed mob boss James “Whitey” Bulger. But it’s still unclear if Max Stern and Howard Cooper will actually end up taking the case.

The Globe reported this morning that Stern and Cooper had agreed to take the case if Bulger was granted court-appointed counsel. Since then, however, veteran court observer David Frank reported in a blog post for Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly that the duo may actually not end up with the job.

The issue, it seems, may lie in which judge tries the case.

Prosecutors announced yesterday that they dropped a racketeering indictment against Bulger from 1994 in an effort to focus on the 19 murder charges it leveled against the accused mobster in 1999.

The 1999 murder indictments are currently assigned to U.S. District Court Judge Richard G. Stearns, according to Frank. Bulger has been appearing in front of U.S. District Court Chief Judge Mark L. Wolf.

If Wolf doesn’t end up trying the case, Stern and Cooper may not end up being Bulger’s laywers, Frank wrote in the post:

In the event the Bulger case remains in Wolf’s session, Cooper and Stern will be appointed, the source tells Lawyers Weekly.

However, if it goes to Stearns and U.S. Magistrate Judge Marianne B. Bowler, the source says it is unlikely the pair would be assigned to the case.

On Radio Boston yesterday, Frank said that Stern and Cooper were highly respected in the Boston legal community and that both of the layers had in the past been named “Lawyer of the Year” by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly.

Wednesday Morning: Some Suspected Bulger’s California Hideout

Published June 29, 2011

Most of the world was stunned last week when the FBI announced it had arrested reputed mob boss James “Whitey” Bulger in Santa Monica, Calif. But at least one person wasn’t that surprised.

WBUR’s David Boeri went out to California 11 years ago to follow up on tips he’d received that Bulger was in the area. WBUR even learned that one tip that the FBI received five years ago came from a spot just four blocks from where Bulger was eventually found. Check out this video from Boeri’s 2000 report.

Two prominent Boston lawyers are poised to form Bulger’s defense team. Howard Cooper and Max Stern haven’t yet been officially assigned to the case but have agreed to represent the alleged mobster, according to the Globe.

In other alleged-organized-crime-member-returned-to-Boston-from-the-West news: Enrico Ponzo, allegedly a former Boston mafia member who was captured in Idaho in March, reportedly posed as a white supremacist in order to fit in in the rural area in which he was living.

The Boston City City Council last night urged that the Boston police be granted authority to patrol Massport land. Currently, Massport land — which includes airports and tunnels, but also waterfront areas like Carson Beach in South Boston — falls under State Police jurisdiction. No one from the State Police showed up to the City Council meeting.

A Superior Court judge is considering a request to halt pension payments to former House Speaker Salvatore DiMasi, following his corruption conviction.

Westborough-based BJ’s Wholesale Club is set to be sold to a venture capital firm in a $2.8 billion deal. A BJ’s spokesman told the Boston Business Journal that he doesn’t expect layoffs at this point.

Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Cliff Lee made the Red Sox look like a local Little League team last night, pitching his third-straight complete game shutout in a row. The Sox’ bats were quiet in the 5-0 loss, as the team mustered just two hits.

What we’re following: We’ll continue to report on Boston Mayor Thomas Menino’s proposal to ban motorized dirt bikes, the decline in mortgage delinquencies in Greater Boston and a new economic deal between the state and Israel.