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Whitey Bulger Victims’ Families Awarded Nearly $8.5 Million for Their Massachusetts Wrongful Deaths

US District Judge William G. Young is ordering the US government to pay the families of Edward “Brian” Halloran and Michael Donahue nearly $8.5 million for their Massachusetts wrongful deaths. The surviving family members of two men who were shot to death in Boston in 1982 by FBI informant James “White” Bulger.

Issuing his ruling on Friday, Judge Young accused the government of negligence, self-interested hubris, inattention, and corruption and, as a result, of causing the two men’s murders. The court had already found the FBI responsible for the men’s deaths because of the way it had managed Bulger and informant Stephen “The Rifleman” Flemmi.

Donahan, a truck driver, was an innocent bystander who just happened to be there when Bulger and another person decided to shoot Halloran. Flemmi has admitted under oath that it was ex-FBI agent John J. Conolly Jr. who informed him and Bulger that Halloran, who was also working with the FBI, had implicated them in the 1981 slaying of a Tulsa businessman.

Judge Young awarded Donahue’s widow and three sons $6.4 million for his wrongful death. He awarded Halloran’s widow over $2 million.

The US government has not decided whether it will appeal the wrongful death awards. This is the second judgment issued against the US government to the family members of people that Bulger has murdered. In 2006, a judge awarded $3.1 million to the mother and brother of Quincy fisherman John McIntyre for his murder because the FBI once again mismanaged informants Flemmi and Bulger.

Families of ‘Whitey’ Bulger victims win nearly $8.5m in suit, Boston.com, May 1, 2009
Families awarded $8.5m in mob case, Boston.com, May 2, 2009

Related Web Resources:
James J Bulger, FBI.gov
Stephen ‘The Rifleman’ Flemmi, Boston.com
Suing the Government for Negligence: The Federal Tort Claims Act, NOLO.com
If someone you love has been killed in violent crime, you may be entitled to Massachusetts wrongful death recovery for the harm their death and your loss.