Bulger Trial Begins in Boston, TV Reporters There Despite no Court Cameras


The long-awaited case against James “Whitey” Bulger kicks off today with jury instructions in Boston, but thanks to the federal court's ban on cameras, the closest viewers will get to seeing the 83-year-old reputed mob boss is in a courtroom sketch – or maybe when officers rush him in and out of the courthouse, reports the Boston Herald. “This is the United States putting Whitey Bulger on trial for a number of crimes and Whitey Bulger putting the United States on trial for a number of crimes they'll be hard-pressed to deny,” said John Miller of CBS News, a former FBI assistant director. “Was this the story of a rogue agent (John Connolly) and his mishandling of a top informant and an organization turning a blind eye?” The prospect has the massive contingent of TV reporters slated to cover the trial gnashing their teeth. “An entire trial can come down to a moment between a prosecutor and a witness,” said Fox 25 reporter Bob Ward. The trial is expected to last at least through August, with about 160 potential witnesses. The advantage in coverage will go to newspapers, but the BBC, CNN and Fox News Channel, along with local TV stations, are among the almost 50 organizations that have obtained media credentials with the courthouse. “We like a criminal with an edge,” said Richard Downes, Washington correspondent for the RTE, Ireland's national public service broadcaster, calling Whitey the Irish equivalent to “The Godfather's” Michael Corleone.

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