A female stool pigeon has received a check for a cool $2 million dollars for proving the tip off that finally nailed fugitive Irish American crime kingpin James 'Whitey' Bulger.
For decades Bulger was one of America's most wanted until he was finally captured in June in Santa Monica, California. Investigators discovered Bulger had been living there in a rented apartment with his long-term girlfriend Catherine Greig.
Bulger was wanted in connection with 19 murders and had fled Boston just before he was indicted in early 1995.
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But not everyone is cheering the news of his capture. According to a report in The Daily Mail this week Keith Messina, a 45-year-old restaurant manager from Las Vegas, said he was recently notified by the FBI that his claim for compensation for information leading to Bulger's capture had been rejected.
Messina told the Mail he believed it was his tip that led to the arrest of Bulger and Greig in June.
Messina was startled when he learned from his lawyer the reward had been given to someone else, and shortly after he received a letter from the FBI to that effect.
'They're the ones who made a mistake,' Messina told the Mail. 'They would have had him three years ago. If they had followed my tip, they would have nailed him.'
Messina's attorney, Michael Gowdey, agreed. 'We all wonder exactly why the FBI would encourage people to make tips that they're just going to ignore,' Gowdey said. 'It took them two years and God-knows-how-much taxpayers' money after Messina made the tip to come to the conclusion that they should check in the place that Messina told them originally.'
Gowdey added that he plans to file a lawsuit to contest the FBI decision to deny his client a share of the reward money.
Although authorities will not confirm if a reward has been paid they have acknowledged a woman who saw a television news report about Bulger provided the evidence that led to the arrest.
Prosecutors claim Bulger evaded capture for 16 years by carrying up to five different false ID cards