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Prosecution seeks life in prison for James ‘Whitey’ Bulger

Prosecutors in the trial of James “Whitey” Bulger argued that he should receive a sentencing of life in prison, according to a memo Thursday filed by U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz.

“Whitey Bulger’s decades-long crime spree is now over,” stated the memo. “Having now been convicted of 31 felonies, including … counts involving multiple murders, Bulger richly deserves to spend the rest of his life in jail.”

After a two-month trial at the U.S. District Court in South Boston, Ortiz said in the memo that the trial “revealed Bulger’s sinister nature and his truly disturbing disregard for human life.”

Bulger was found guilty on Aug. 12 on various counts of racketeering, extortion and money laundering. He was also found guilty of 11 of the murders that he allegedly committed during his time as former mob boss of the Winter Hull Gang during the 1970s and 1980s. He was found after 16 years on the run in Santa Monica, Calif. in 2011.

“Presiding over a massive criminal enterprise, Bulger extorted dozens of individuals, flooded South Boston with cocaine, shot innocent people, strangled women, murdered his competitors, corrupted FBI agents, and then ran away and hid for sixteen years when he was finally indicted,” Ortiz said in the memo.

In trial, Bulger claimed he was never a Federal Investigations Bureau informant, despite many meetings with FBI agents, and his well-documented role as an informant. He also attempted to block the press from reporting on his life of crime by asking the court to sequester some reporters, and pretending he would call them as witnesses, according to the memo.

“There are no mitigating factors, and defendant Bulger has no redeeming qualities which justifies any sentence below the one called by the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines for life imprisonment as well as five years incarceration,” Ortiz said in the memo.

Bulger generated more than $25 million in racketeering profits between 1972 and 2000 from drug dealers, businessmen and property.

“Bulger’s horrific crimes and sadistic behavior demonstrate that he deserves no mercy at the time of sentencing,” Ortiz said in the memo. “While many of the victims will speak for themselves and their loved ones at the time of sentencing, the actual sentence should speak for itself: life in prison.”

Bulger is scheduled to return to court for his sentencing hearing on Wednesday and the judge will give his decision on Thursday.

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