A former IRA operative in America is one of only two witnesses scheduled to appear for Whitey Bulger at his Boston trial.
Sources say they believe that Nee, who was a key member of Bulger’s gang in the old days, may testify that far more FBI officers were cooperating with Whitey and covering for his gang than has been admitted by law enforcement.
“The FBI guilty list stopped at John Connolly (The crooked agent now in jail in Florida for covering up for Bulger and warning him)” said a Boston source. “Many believe covering up for Whitey went far further, all the way up the FBI chain. Nee could have that information.”
Pat Nee, now 70 was a major gunrunner to the IRA in the 1970s and planned the infamous Valhalla consignment which was intercepted off the Irish coast in 1984.
Nee also carried out numerous bank robberies he said were motivated by his desire to send funds to the IRA.
He allegedly delivered John McIntrye a crewman on the Valhalla to his death at Whitey’s hands after McIntyre told the FBI (unluckily it was Connolly he gave the information to) that Whitey was involved. Tipped off by Connolly, Bulger wanted McIntyre dead.
Nee was born in Ros Muc, an Irish language speaking village in the Connemara, County Galway. He has recalled in his book that,"Our family had it tough in Ireland, sure, but I'm not going to tell you any of that Angela's Ashes crap to try to gain your sympathy. We might not have had many good clothes, but Ma washed them every day. There was always good food. In fact, Ma never let my brothers and I go to bed hungry. And I remember falling asleep every night to a penetrating fire that burned until early morning."
Nee’s family emigrated to Boston when he was young and at age 14 he became a member of the Mullen Gang in South Boston.
"My progression to crime was as easy as a baby's transition from crawling to walking. I didn't have an epiphany; I never sat down and had a soul searching experience in which I decided that being a criminal was my goal in life. It just seemed natural - there was a lot of money to be had if you spent the time planning the jobs right. The more I hung with the Mullens, the easier it was to go out on jobs. I'd simply ask if they needed another guy."
Nee also enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps. He arrived in Vietnam in 1965 and saw combat at Phu Bai.
Back in Boston a gang war broke out and the upshot of it was that he and Whitey ended up agreeing a pact and working together.
Nee later fled Boston after being informed by Bulger that Federal agents were looking for him. After several years in hiding, he was arrested in 1987 and served an 18-month sentence in Federal prison.
After his release in 1989, Wikipedia notes that Nee was disgusted by McIntyre's murder and, motivated increasingly by Irish nationalism, he decided to cut his links to Bulger. He put together a crew of his own and began planning armed robberies to raise money for the IRA. He was arrested by the FBI during an armored car robbery in Abington, Massachusetts on January 13, 1990. He was sentenced to 37 years in Federal prison but was released after April 2000.
He resumed his job as a union laborer and will now be a key witness for Bulger about the extent of FBI complicity in Bulger’s crimes.