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August 13, 2013

Locally-tied slaying among Bulger's convictions

The murder of a sometime fisherman with Gloucester ties is one of 11 for which a jury found Boston mob boss James “Whitey” Bulger guilty Monday.

One of the nation’s most wanted fugitives, Bulger, 83, was also convicted of a slew of other crimes, including conspiracy in three murders, many of them committed while he was said to be an FBI informant.

John McIntyre of Quincy was a sometimes fisherman who acted as ship’s mechanic when Bulger cronies shipped 71/2 tons of weapons and ammunition to the Irish Republican Army aboard the Gloucester-based swordfishing vessel Valhalla in 1984.

When authorities seized the weapons shortly after they were transferred to another ship, and a drug shipment was seized from another vessel in Boston, Bulger heard from an FBI agent that McIntyre may have told authorities about both operations.

Bulger engineered a meeting in a South Boston home with the fisherman, said Bulger associate Kevin Weeks, a key witness.

McIntyre was chained to a chair and interrogated by Bulger, who held a machine gun, and that when McIntyre admitted he was cooperating, Bulger wrapped a rope around his neck and tried to strangle him. The rope was too thick, Weeks said.

“Jim says to him, ‘Do you want one in the head?’ and he said, ‘Yes, please,’” Weeks testified.

Weeks helped bury McIntyre in the cellar, and dig him up and rebury him in Dorchester when the house was sold. It was Weeks, when arrested after Bulger went on the lam, who lead police to McIntyre’s body and two others buried with him.

Bulger was charged primarily with racketeering, which listed 33 criminal acts — among them, 19 murders that he allegedly helped orchestrate or carried out himself during the 1970s and ‘80s while he led the Winter Hill Gang, Boston’s ruthless Irish mob. The racketeering charge also included acts of extortion, conspiracy, money-laundering and drug dealing.

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