Boston mob boss James “Whitey” Bulger was arrested in Los Angeles on Wednesday, 16 years after he went on the run from authorities and sparked an international manhunt.
The FBI took Bulger, now 81, into custody without incident along with his long-time girlfriend, Catherine Greig, only days after the government launched its latest publicity campaign asking the public for help finding the fugitive mobster.
The Associated Press has the back story on Bulger:
Bulger, who was an inspiration for the 2006 Martin Scorsese film, “The Departed,” is wanted for his alleged role in 19 murders. At one time, he provided information on a rival gang to the FBI, then fled in January 1995 when a former agent told him he was about to be indicted.
The cozy relationship between Bulger and the FBI – along with the brutal nature of many of the mobster’s alleged crimes – made his escape a high-profile embarrassment for federal authorities, and earned him a spot next to Osama Bin Laden on the FBI’s Most Wanted List.
Adding to the media frenzy around Bulger was the fact that his brother, William, was one of the most powerful politicians in Massachusetts and led the state Senate for 17 years.
Bulger and Greig are slated to make their first court appearance later Thursday. He faces a slew of federal charges including murder, narcotics distribution, extortion and money laundering. Greig, meanwhile, is charged with harboring a fugitive.
According to reports, the couple lived on the top floor of a three-story Santa Monica apartment complex that is several blocks from a bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean.
Here's how the FBI described Bulger on their Most Wanted List:
Bulger is an avid reader with an interest in history. He is known to frequent libraries and historic sites. Bulger may be taking heart medication. He maintains his physical fitness by walking on beaches and in parks with his female companion, Catherine Elizabeth Greig. Bulger and Greig love animals. Bulger has been known to alter his appearance through the use of disguises. He has traveled extensively throughout the United States, Europe, Canada, and Mexico.