Bulger Day 11: The Informant File Fight Goes On

Another day. Another fight about the authenticity of Bulger's informant file.

So Whitey Bulger’s on trial and you’re interested in hearing about it, but you’ve got this darn day job and you can’t manage to keep up with all the live tweets. We feel you. Here’s what you missed. (Past coverage here.)

The Witnesses: Safe to say that with the Supreme Court’s landmark rulings and Aaron Hernandez’s murder charge, the Whitey Bulger trial wasn’t the most captivating legal story of the day. That was especially true when the defense spent significant time placing individual documents into the record one by one and asking a witness if he was familiar with each of them …

The witness, as it has been for the past few days, was Special Agent James Marra from the U.S. Department of Justice, and the focus, as it has been for the past few days, was whether Whitey Bulger’s FBI informant file is to be believed.

In a long cross-examination, Defense attorney Hank Brennan tried to poke holes in the file, suggesting it was fabricated by corrupted FBI Agent John Connolly, and to allege that Marra wasn’t thorough in his review of it. Brennan pointed out, for instance, that some of the information appeared twice, suggesting Connolly was padding it. And, he noted, Bulger once refused to divulge the identity of a source in the state police, something a real informant wouldn’t get away with. On redirect, Assistant U.S. Attorney Fred Wyshak poked holes in the holes, noting that refusing to divulge the state policeman’s identity wouldn’t require an informant be dropped.

Marra took a break so that two witnesses could quickly identify photos of Bulger victims. Neither was cross-examined.

When we left off, Marra’s testimony was coming to an end, but his redirect hadn’t quite finished, so we’ll see more of him tomorrow, as well as, finally, another corrupt FBI Agent who had dealings with Bulger.

What’s Bulger Wearing: The defendant was wearing a navy long-sleeved t-shirt and jeans. Points for consistency, we’ll give him that.