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Boston and Beyond

May 23, 2013

Bulger attorney says informant should be exposed

(Continued)

Bulger, who is allegedly a former FBI informant, fled in 1995 after being tipped about a coming indictment from his FBI handler. He was captured in California in 2011.

In court Wednesday, Bulger was clean shaven and wore glasses and a white long-sleeved T-shirt under his orange prison jumpsuit. He didn’t speak except to answer, “Good afternoon,” when Casper greeted him, and he was led to and from the courtroom with his hands cuffed behind his back.

Jury selection, from a pool starting at 675, is scheduled to start June 4 and the trial is expected to last three months. Prosecutors said Wednesday that their witness list has grown to near 70 and they expect to present 900 to 1,000 exhibits.

Prosecutors want potential jurors to undergo criminal background checks, which Brennan argued was unusual and offensive.

“A citizen’s word when they come before the court should be enough,” he told Casper.

But prosecutor Zachary Hafer said the checks were a needed step to ensure jurors were legally eligible to serve and to avoid problems that could eventually threaten the integrity of the trial.

“It’s doubly important we get it right the first time,” he said.

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