In Boston, Mueller was an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the U.S. Attorney’s Office and then became the Acting U.S. Attorney from 1986 through 1987.
It was Mueller’s actions during that time that raised questions about his role in one of the FBI’s most controversial cases involving the FBI’s use of a confidential informant that led to the convictions of four innocent men, who were sentenced to death for murders they did not commit.
Local law enforcement officials, the media, and some colleagues criticized Mueller and the FBI for what they believed was the bureau’s role in covering up for the FBI’s longtime dealings with mobster and informant James “Whitey” Bulger.
Bulger was a kingpin and a confidential informant for the FBI from the 1970s in the bureau’s efforts to take down the Italian mafia in Boston. But Bulger’s relationship with his FBI handler Special Agent John Connolly became toxic. It was later discovered that Connolly went out of his way to protect Bulger and aided the crime boss against investigations being conducted by the Boston PD and the Massachusetts State Police. According to reports at the time, Connolly would inform Bulger of wiretaps and surveillance being conducted by law enforcement.
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