Former Boston mob boss James "Whitey" Bulger faces life in prison after jurors found him guilty of racketeering, money laundering and having taken part in 11 of 19 murders Monday after five days of deliberations.
"Today is a day many in [Boston] thought would never come," said U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz. "So many people's lives were so terribly harmed by the criminal actions of Bulger and his crew, and today's conviction does not alter that harm, and it doesn't lessen it. However, we hope that [the victims] find some degree of comfort in the fact that today has come and Bulger is being held accountable for his horrific crimes."
Bulger was once considered one of the most wanted fugitives in the U.S. after fleeing Boston in 1994. After 16 years on the run, he was captured by authorities in 2011 in Santa Monica, Calif. He is alleged to have been the leader of Boston's Winter Hill Gang during the 1970s and '80s.
Prosecutors allege that Bulger was a longtime FBI informant who was given protection by corrupt agents between 1975 and 1990.
"Jim Bulger was pleased with the outcome," said defense attorney J.W. Carney. "It was important to him that the government corruption be exposed and important to him that people see the deals the government was able to make with certain people."
Carney said that Bulger intends to appeal the verdict.
"I didn't expect [the verdict] because, I have to tell you all, I don't feel that he, hands on himself, killed my sister, but I do know that he was guilty of conspiring or taking part of the whole thing, but the no finding is better than the not guilty," said Steve Davis, whose sister, Debra, was alleged to have been murdered by Bulger.
The jury reported no finding in the murder of Debra Davis, the girlfriend of Bulger's partner Stephen "The Rifleman" Flemmi.
"My heart goes out to the other families," said Tom Donahue, whose father was murdered by Bulger. He lamented for the families who may never feel closure from the murders the jury was unable to prove Bulger committed.
"He should have been found guilty of everything, especially the murders," Donahue says.
On Monday, jurors asked Judge Denise Casper if they should "automatically" find Bulger guilty of a crime if one or more of his associates had already been found guilty of the same crime. Casper explained that someone else's guilt did not mean a guilty finding against Bulger, reported USA Today.
Though he agreed to forfeit the $822,000 in cash officials found in his Santa Monica apartment, Bulger was allowed to keep a Stanley Cup ring. NBC News reported a document filed in court did not name the source of the ring, but that Bulger did have ties to former Montreal Canadians player Chris Nilan, who was married to Karen Stanley, the daughter of Bulger's longtime girlfriend.