Wednesday September 5, 2012

BOSTON (AP) -- Prosecutors have accused a lawyer for former mobster James "Whitey" Bulger of trying to "color the facts" and influence potential jurors in the case by questioning the credibility of prospective witnesses at Bulger's trial.

In a status report filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court, federal prosecutors said attorney J.W. Carney Jr., in remarks to reporters, has repeatedly impugned the credibility of government attorneys and law enforcement officials Carney has said he intends to call as witnesses.

Prosecutors claim Carney's comments violate a local rule of federal court that prohibits lawyers from releasing information or opinion if there is a reasonable likelihood that it will interfere with a fair trial.

Bulger, the former leader of the Winter Hill Gang, is awaiting trial for his alleged participation in 19 killings. Carney did not return a call seeking comment Wednesday.