Investigators helped by a pinpoint tip unearthed the skeletal remains of two men and a woman thought to be victims of mobsters Stephen "The Rifleman" Flemmi and James "Whitey" Bulger.
Authorities believe the woman is Deborah Hussey, Flemmi's 26-year-old stepdaughter, who allegedly was about to expose an affair with him when she disappeared in 1984, the Boston Globe reported today. Flemmi was the common-law husband of Hussey's mother.
The investigators knew exactly where to look Friday and came upon the grave almost immediately. U.S. Attorney Donald Stern called the discovery an important step toward unraveling the tangled history of Boston's underworld.
"Some people may view this as a bit of Boston history that ought not be revisited," he said. "I feel the opposite."
Investigators found weapons Thursday during a search at the home of Flemmi's mother in South Boston, according to news reports. Stern would not say whether that was related to the search for the remains.
Flemmi, who was jailed in 1995 on federal racketeering charges, worked as an FBI informer for decades while conducting mob business.
Flemmi, Bulger and their FBI handler were charged in December in another federal racketeering indictment. It alleges that former agent John J. Connolly Jr. protected Flemmi and Bulger from prosecution and tipped them to the earlier indictment. Bulger has not been captured.
The search for the remains began Thursday afternoon, after the investigators were tipped on the location. The Boston Herald reported that the source was Kevin Weeks, a former Bulger associate who was arrested on racketeering charges in November. Stern would not comment on the source.
The Globe reported that officials were searching for the remains of Arthur "Bucky" Barrett and John McIntyre.
The newspaper said Barrett was one of six men who stole $1.5 million in a 1980 bank robbery. He disappeared in 1983. Bulger and Flemmi are suspected of killing Barrett and stealing his share.
McIntyre disappeared in 1984 after Bulger and Flemmi learned that he was assisting federal agents who were investigating a botched plot to provide guns to the Irish Republican Army, the Globe said.
Flemmi is also a suspect in the 1981 disappearance of his girlfriend.
The 1995 indictment charges Flemmi with killing four men in the 1960s. The bodies of two victims--brothers Walter and Edward Bennett--have never been found.
Walter Bennett's daughter, Susan, visited the scene Friday, hoping to learn something about her father's fate.
"I don't even know why I came down here," she said. "I don't usually come to these. Something just feels funny about this one."