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Prosecutors in the trial of reputed gangster James "Whitey" Bulger objected Monday to a request to provide the name of a confidential informant who Bulger's lawyers hope can help undermine the credibility of two key government witnesses.
Bulger's lawyers have asked U.S. District Judge Denise Casper to order prosecutors to turn over the name of the informant referenced in an FBI report from 2000. They say the informant gave information about former Bulger associates Kevin Weeks and John Martorano that could contradict their testimony at trial.
In court papers filed Monday, prosecutors said they have agreed to give the defense a copy of the FBI report, but are not required to give the name of the informant, who reported only "street talk."
Bulger's lawyers claim the informant said that Weeks and Martorano each had assured certain people that they were cooperating with law enforcement but would not provide prosecutors with incriminating information about those particular individuals. The defense believes that could hurt their credibility when they testify at Bulger's upcoming trial.
But prosecutors said the informant does not have firsthand knowledge.
"Because the government is producing an unredacted copy of the FBI report to the defense, the substance of the information has been disclosed and defense investigators can interview the individuals listed in the report who would have firsthand knowledge of the rumors," prosecutors argued in their court filing.
Bulger, 83, the former leader of the Winter Hill Gang, is scheduled to go on trial next month in a racketeering indictment accusing him of participating in 19 murders. He was one of the nation's most wanted fugitives until his capture in Santa Monica, Calif., in 2011.
This program aired on May 20, 2013. The audio for this program is not available.
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