Prosecutors and defense attorneys are expected to present lengthy closing arguments to jurors as they lay out their cases in the racketeering trial of reputed gangster James “Whitey” Bulger.
Closing arguments were scheduled for Monday in U.S. District Court, where during the nearly eight-week trial jurors heard sometimes gruesome testimony about 19 killings in which Bulger is accused of participating and numerous extortions, money-laundering schemes and the hoarding of guns.
Bulger, 83, is accused of committing a litany of crimes while leading the Winter Hill Gang in the 1970s and ’80s. He fled Boston in 1994 ahead of an indictment and was one of the FBI’s most-wanted fugitives until he was captured with his longtime girlfriend in Santa Monica, Calif., in 2011.
Judge Denise Casper has granted each side up to three hours and 15 minutes for its closing argument, but on Friday, she urged the lawyers to consider the jury’s ability to stay focused for such a long time.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Fred Wyshak, who has pursued the case against Bulger for two decades, will give the closing argument for prosecutors. Wyshak will have to review a mountain of evidence, including testimony from about 70 witnesses. He also will have to go over the charges: 32 counts in all.