The longtime girlfriend of suspected Boston mob boss James “Whitey” Bulger is expected to plead guilty Wednesday to charges that she helped Bulger remain on the lam for 16 years.
The 60-year-old Catherine Greig could have landed in prison for over a decade, but the deal cut with prosecutors may net her a sentence of as little as 32 months.
In a statement of fact signed by Greig and released in court Monday, she stated, “I engaged in conduct that was intended to help Bulger, 82, avoid detection from law enforcement, and to provide him with support and assistance during his flight from law enforcement.”
The charges chiefly concerned her use of false documents and the forging of identities over the time she lived with the accused boss of Boston’s Winter Hill Gang, who stands charged with 19 murders.
Some of the victims of those murders expressed their frustration at what they feel is a slap on the wrist for Greig.
In an interview with the Boston Globe earlier in the week, Tim Donohue, whose father’s 1982 killing was linked to Bulger, said: ”She helped that guy on the run…We could have had these answers 16 years ago. She’s a criminal, she’s not a victim. She’s a criminal.”
Public opinion of Greig has not improved as details of their life on the run have been revealed. After their capture last year authorities found over $800,000 in Bulger’s apartment, most of it in $100 bills.
Five separate safety-deposit boxes filled with money have been found in the US and Europe, and under the plea deal Greig isn’t required to reveal where any more valuables may be hidden. She also doesn’t have to testify against Bulger.
Despite the wealth secreted away by the pair, Greig and Bulger lived a life that was, by all accounts, solidly middle-class. Living under the names of Charles and Carol Gasco they managed to live a normal life before their July 21 capture in Santa Monica.
Greig, a former dental hygienist, was able to keep up her appearance throughout their life on the run, frequenting beauty salons, dentists and plastic surgeons even as she lived off the grid.
The looks that gained her the attention of the alleged Kingpin may have been what brought Greig to justice. Ron Gollobin, a former television reporter who covered the height of the Boston Mafia wars, noted that, “She was a very distinctive woman, stunning even at 60.”
“He looked like any old man with a baseball hat. Put a baseball cap on me, I look like ‘Whitey,” said Gollobin. “There is an irony that it was ultimately Catherine who brought him down.”