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Catherine Greig fled with notorious crime boss Bulger in 1995 and helped him hide out for 16 years.
Catherine Greig, the long-time girlfriend of Boston-based crime boss James "Whitey" Bulger, cried as she pled guilty to charges of conspiracy to harbor a fugitive, identity fraud, and conspiracy to commit identity fraud on Wednesday, the New York Times reported.
Greig admitted that she fled with Bulger in 1995, and helped the notorious mobster avoid trial for multiple murders for 16 years.
"I engaged in conduct that was intended to help Bulger avoid detection from law enforcement, and to provide him with support and assistance during his flight from law enforcement," she said in a statement of fact released in court Monday, ABC News reported.
In her statement, Greig admitted to posing as Bulger’s wife and using a number of aliases and false identification to see doctors, buy prescription drugs and pay rent on their apartment, the Times reported.
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Greig is due to be sentenced June 12, and prosecutors have said she could serve less than three years in prison because she has no prior record, according to the Boston Herald.
“Not for a week, not for a month, and not for a year—but for 16 long years, Ms. Greig knowingly and willingly did everything she could to prevent the capture of Mr. Bulger,” said United States Attorney Carmen Ortiz, according to an FBI press release. “The sentence that we recommend will reflect the fact that she needs to pay a heavy price for those actions.”
Judge Woodlock reminded Greig that the government could compel her to testify in Bulger's case, and that she could face civil or criminal contempt charges if she refused, which would add to her prison time, according to the Times.
The 82-year-old Bulger, who was captured with Greig last year in Santa Monica, California, has pleaded not guilty to 19 murder charges, the Washington Post reported. His trial is scheduled to begin November 5.
After their capture in California last June, authorities found over $800,000 in Bulger's apartment, most of it in $100 bills, according to ABC.
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The Irish-American mobster was once one of the FBI's Top 10 most wanted fugitives, CNN reported. Dick Lehr, who wrote a book about Bulger, described him as "a cold-blooded killer whose gang went to lengths to avoid detection."
"When they killed someone — this is pre-DNA — they pulled the teeth out, cut the fingers off, tried to make it so the victims, if they were discovered from their graves, couldn't be identified. There's just no bottom. It doesn't get much uglier than someone like Whitey Bulger," Lehr said, according to CNN.
Many of Bulger's victims' family members see Greig in much the same light as her boyfriend.
“She’s a monster,” Steven Davis, whose sister Mr. Bulger was charged with strangling to death in 1981, told Judge Woodlock on Wednesday, the Times reported. “We could have resolved this 16 years ago. She kept him in hiding all that time.”