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Boston crime boss Whitey Bulger formally appeals

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November 20, 2013 07:03 PM EST | AP


BOSTON (AP) — Former Boston crime boss James "Whitey" Bulger is appealing the racketeering conviction that landed him a life sentence last week.

Bulger's attorneys filed a brief notice of appeal in federal court late Wednesday.

The appeal was expected. Bulger's lawyers have said he believes his trial was a "sham" because he wasn't allowed to argue that a now-deceased federal prosecutor gave him immunity to commit crimes.

The Winter Hill Gang boss was an FBI informant against the rival New England Mafia.

Bulger was convicted in August in a broad racketeering case, including 11 killings and other gangland crimes in the 1970s and 80s.

Bulger fled Boston in 1994 after being tipped off by a former FBI agent he was about to be indicted. He was a fugitive for 16 years until he was captured in 2011.