US panel indicts Bulger, Salemme
The charges allege a long partnership in organized crime
By Judy Rakowsky and Matthew Brelis, Globe Staff, 1/11/1995
The two reputed kingpins of the New England rackets, both fugitives for
nearly a week, were indicted yesterday by a federal grand jury as longstanding
partners in organized crime.
Alleged Mafia godfather Francis P. (Cadillac Frank) Salemme and alleged
South Boston crime boss James J. (Whitey) Bulger are charged with extortion
Five other men, including Stephen (The Rifleman) Flemmi -- a close
associate of Bulger and Salemme -- were charged with loansharking, conspiracy
and money laundering. Conspicuously absent from the indictment were charges of
Francis P. (Cadillac Frank) Salemme, 61
Boss of the New England Patriarca crime family
Charges: 2 counts of racketeering, 7 counts of extortion, 5 counts of crossing
state lines for criminal activity, 1 count of conspiracy, 1 count of
James J. (Whitey) Bulger Jr., 65
Winter Hill Gang leader
Charges: 2 counts of racketeering, 10 counts of extortion
Stephen J. (The Rifleman) Flemmi, 60
Winter Hill Gang leader
Arrested Jan. 5, held without bail
Charges: 2 counts of racketeering, 11 counts of extortion, 1 count of witness
Robert J. DeLuca, 49
Patriaca family soldier
Arrested Jan. 5, held without bail
Charges: 2 counts of racketeering, 2 counts of extortion, 1 count of
conspiracy and 3 counts of crossing state lines for criminal activity
George Kaufman, 56
Winter Hill gang member
Will be summoned to court for arraignment
Charges: 2 counts of racketeering, 12 counts of extortion, 1 count of money
James Martorano, 53
Patriarca family capo regime
Is in federal prison on other charges
Charges: 2 counts of racketeering, 1 count of extortion, 1 one count of
Also indicted: Frank Salemme, 38, mob associate, son of Francis P. Salemme.
Out on bail on another charge; will be summoned to court for arraignment on
Charges: 2 counts of racketeering, 7 counts of crossing state lines for
criminal activity, 1 count of conspiracy, 5 counts of extortion.
drug trafficking and murder, even though law enforcement officials have
investigated Bulger, Salemme and Flemmi for those crimes.
Bulger and Salemme escaped a law enforcement dragnet last week. Flemmi is
being held without bail pending a detention hearing next week; the other four
men are either in jail or have agreed to surrender.
For the first time, law enforcement authorities in Boston have brought
criminal charges that allege an alliance dating to 1965 between the Irish mob
and the Mafia that has allowed the two not only to coexist but also to
coordinate crime schemes such as the collection of "rent" from bookmakers.
US Attorney Donald K. Stern called the 90-page racketeering indictment
''far-reaching and significant," saying the charges against the alleged
leaders of the Winter Hill Gang and the Mafia, "if successful, will deal a
serious blow to organized crime in Massachusetts."
Defense attorneys in the case said the 37-count indictment merely recycled
allegations from past cases.
Attorney Anthony M. Cardinale, who represents Robert P. DeLuca, a reputed
Mafioso from Lincoln, R.I., who was charged in yesterday's indictment, said:
''It's like the federal Greenpeace movement, a recycling of a lot of old
allegations. It's the same old stuff, but putting different names with some of
the old stories."
DeLuca, who allegedly was involved in a 1989 Mafia induction ceremony in
Medford that the FBI secretly captured on tape, was arrested Friday on
Stern declined to comment on where law enforcement authorities believe
Salemme and Bulger may be hiding, or whether they may have left the area or
He said State Police and the FBI last Thursday had hoped to make
''simultaneous arrests for three persons who don't typically make themselves
available to law enforcement anyway."
Of Salemme, Bulger and Flemmi, only Flemmi was arrested last week. He was
handcuffed by 7 p.m. Thursday at Schooner's restaurant on Boston's High
Street. Flemmi's son, Stephen, partly owns the restaurant, according to
Word spread quickly that the dragnet was out for Bulger and the older
Salemme. WCVB-TV (Ch. 5) reported at 10:30 p.m. Thursday that Flemmi was in
custody and Salemme and Bulger were being sought.
Stern declined to comment on what went wrong in the arrests, saying only
that "there is a track record for defendants in these kinds of cases to flee."
The federal indictment also mentions an alleged offer that former Mafia
boss Raymond L.S. Patriarca made in 1974 to Flemmi to be inducted into the
Patriarca crime family. Flemmi -- a leader of the Winter Hill Gang, according
to authorities -- allegedly declined the offer, but pledged his and Bulger's
enduring loyalty to Patriarca.
The indictment makes frequent mention of threats of violence in tandem with
extortion of bookmakers and others, but missing are murders and drug dealing
offenses that recent media reports had advertised.
In addition to the criminal offenses charged, the indictment leaves the
door open for a forfeiture charge to the possible seizure of a lottery jackpot
that Bulger, of South Boston, won in 1991. Bulger split $14.3 million with two
Salemme, of Sharon, was a fugitive from 1967 to 1973 in an attempted murder
case, the car-bombing of lawyer John Fitzgerald, for which he was arrested in
New York City and served 15 years in prison. Fitzgerald lost a leg in the
explosion. Yesterday's indictment repeats that charge in the racketeering
Flemmi, of Quincy, was a fugitive during approximately the same years.
Many of the offenses in the indictment have been charged in cases already
tried, and some which have resulted in convictions. Under the federal
racketeering statute, crimes for which a defendant has already been convicted
can be used to support the umbrella RICO charge.
Attorney MaryEllen Kelleher, who represents Flemmi, said yesterday: "We
can't wait for the trial. It's a rehash of many incidents and charges that
we've seen in other indictments."
Kelleher, an associate in Richard M. Egbert's law firm, said she was
surprised to see Flemmi charged in the attempted murder of Fitzgerald, noting
that the state dismissed the charge against Flemmi years ago when it
Egbert declined comment on the case. Besides Flemmi, Egbert represents the
senior Salemme and his son, Frank Salemme, also of Sharon, now in ill health
and expected to surrender. Egbert also represents defendant James M.
Martorano, a reputed captain in the New England Mafia, who is in federal
prison in Pennsylvania on a related conviction.
A lawyer for George Kaufman, Paul Haley of New Hampshire, could not be
reached for comment. The indictment seeks forfeiture of $508,425 in assets
from Kaufman, a Brookline resident who has run a garage in Boston and has been
described along with Flemmi as forming the linchpin between the two crime
Many of the charges against the two Salemmes were first aired in a 1992
indictment against the younger Salemme, as well as Patriarca family associate
Thomas Hillary and alleged mobster Dennis LePore, for trying to bribe two
former Teamsters so a movie could be made without Teamsters on the set.
At trial last month, a jury convicted former Teamster official William Winn
of conspiracy and acquitted another Teamster official in the case. Frank
Salemme was not tried because of his illness.
The case also underlies charges in the indictment against both Salemmes for
traveling across state lines in aid of racketeering, in connection with a May
1990 trip to Las Vegas.
The indictment paints Salemme as an expansionist who sought to bring an
increasing number of bookmakers under his umbrella and collect "rent" from
Salemme allegedly expanded his turf into Framingham and Milford with the
assistance of Hillary, now a protected witness, who grew up on the east side
of Providence with Raymond J. Patriarca, and was taken under the wing of his
father, Raymond L.S. Patriarca.
Martorano, formerly of Quincy, has a criminal record stretching back to the
1960s and early 1970s, when he and his brother John were allegedly high-
ranking members of the Winter Hill Gang, law enforcement sources have said.
Martorano spent time in prison for loansharking and a scheme to fix horse
races in which jockeys were threatened. Martorano studied law while in prison
and worked as a paralegal for Egbert in the 1980s after his release.
The indictment also charges Flemmi with suborning perjury and intimidating
grand jury witnesses, as well as with participating in the car bombing of
It charges the older Salemme and his son with conspiring with Hillary and
missing Westwood businessman Steven DiSarro to place video poker machines in
restaurants and bars for illegal operation.
DiSarro, former manager of the South Boston nightclub The Channel, has been
missing since May 10, 1993, and law enforcement officials believe he may have
been killed by mobsters fearing he had become an informant.
The indictment is the culmination of decades of work by the FBI and the
State Police Special Services Section, as well recent contributions from
Middlesex County District Attorney Thomas Reilly's office, the US Drug
Enforcement Administration and the IRS.
This story ran on page 1 of the Boston Globe on 1/11/1995.
© Copyright 1995 Globe Newspaper Company.