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After years on the run, Whitey Bulger seeks trial delay

Lawyer says Bulger will not communicate by letter, phone.

For 16 years, authorities searched for alleged fugitive mob boss James "Whitey" Bulger until they finally caught up with him one year ago Friday.

But now, Bulger's attorney is trying to delay the feds from bringing the 82-year-old to trial.

His attorney, J.W. Carney Jr., filed a 17-page motion Wednesday to reschedule Bulger's trial date. A judge set a trial date for November, but Carney wants to push that back by a year.

"Defense counsel cannot possibly be prepared for trial on the current trial date," Carney wrote in the court document. "Indeed, to maintain that date will eviscerate the defendant's rights to due process of law."

For weeks Carney has sought to delay the trial, a move that has upset family members of Bulger's alleged victims. They have said they worry the 82-year-old Bulger will die before standing trial.

However, in his recent memo, Carney said Bulger is in "good health."

Carney has repeatedly expressed in court and in his most recent memo that it is a "Herculean task" to review the more than 321,000 documents and records of evidence submitted by prosecutors.

In his memo, Carney also said his task is complicated by the fact that Bulger will not communicate with him through letter or phone and pointed to one example of a letter that was labeled "attorney-client privileged" and was opened by officials at the Plymouth County Correctional Facility and sent to prosecutors.

In a document submitted Thursday, prosecutors acknowledged the incident with the letter and said it was "unfortunate" and "inadvertent" and that it would not happen again.

They also requested that a judge deny the request to delay the trial.

"Defense counsel prefers to wallow in confusion and to complain," prosecutors said.

 
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