Widow of Bulger victim says he told her that her husband had left town

The widow of a man allegedly killed by notorious gangster James “Whitey” Bulger in 1975 testified today that Bulger told her that her husband had probably left town.

Margaret King, widow of Tommy King, said Bulger told her that King “was probably in Canada robbing banks, that’s what he originally wanted to do.”

Asked how Bulger seemed at the time, she said, “I’m sure he was agitated I would even bother him. ... I was quite upset.”

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Prosecutors say that, in fact, Bulger had killed King, one of his associates, by luring him into a car where he was then shot by hit man John V. Martorano. Bulger then blamed King for killing Buddy Leonard, whom Bulger had also killed.

King testified in the second week of Bulger’s trial in federal court in Boston. Bulger, 83, is charged in a sweeping racketeering indictment that alleges he participated in 19 murders; extorted bookmakers, drug dealers, and businessmen; laundered money; and stockpiled guns. He who was arrested in Santa Monica, Calif., two years ago after 16 years eluding a worldwide manhunt that had put him in the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted list.

Prosecutors say Bulger ruled with terror in Boston’s underworld for decades and benefited from being protected as a prized FBI informant.

Two other relatives of Bulger’s alleged victims also testified today: Joseph Leonard, Buddy Leonard’s brother; and Sandra Castucci, widow of Richard Castucci, owner of a lounge on Revere Beach Boulevard, who was killed in 1976.

In other testimony today, James Marra, an agent from the Justice Department’s office of the inspector general, which investigates wrongdoing by federal employees, continued to introduce material from Bulger’s FBI informant file.

The file shows that Bulger fed the FBI information for 15 years about everyone from New York Mafia don John Gotti to some of his closest South Boston associates, the Globe reported this morning.

The prosecution and defense also jousted this morning over a request by the defense to lift a gag order so Bulger’s lawyers can defend him in the media.