Black Mass Whitey Bulger, FBI, and Dysfunctional Informant Relationships Description Black Mass

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BlackMass: Whitey Bulger, FBI, and Dysfunctional Informant RelationshipsDescription


PartI: Introduction and Case Highlight

Thebook revolves around a character, James, who became one of the mostnotorious and ruthless gangsters in the United States of America.James caused trouble to the law enforcement agencies. When readingthe book, it is also evident that John &quotWhitey&quot Bulger wasnotorious in the U.S. simply because he had made a grave and unholydeal with his childhood friend, way back during his childhood. Thus,there are also law enforcement and police officers in the region whoare after the notorious criminal (Dick &amp Gerard, 2015). A risingstar, John Connolly, who had a career in the Boston FBI office, wasdifferent as he engaged in offering protection for Bulger. However,interestingly, the protection that the FBI agent, Connolly, wasproviding to the criminal, Bulger, was not free. There were favorsthat the FBI agent was seeking and hoping that by offering theshield, he would receive these gains from the felonious individual. In return for the defense that Bulger was receiving from the FBIagent, he was supposed to help the Federal officer in confiscatingthe Boston`s Italian Mafia. Surprisingly, Boston was left open as noone offered protection in Boston from the criminal, Whitey Bulger.Thus, the opportunity that Bulger saw was to conduct a series ofgangland killings and partake in illegal drug trade businesses, whichhe later controlled in the company in Boston (Dick &amp Gerard,2015). The criminal activities that Bulger was conducting in the cityof Boston caused much friction, and his collaboration with the FBIagent became among the leading scandals in the account of the lawexecution agencies in the United States of America. It was termed asone of the biggest informant scandals in the FBI history.

ThematicAnalysis of the Book

  1. Crime

Crimeis the first theme that can be established from the book. The bookcenters on a grim criminal in the United States of America, so-calledJohn &quotWhitey&quot Bulger. Interestingly, by 1979, Bulger hadbecome a dangerous individual and criminal in Boston town due to theorganized crime activities that he did. Mostly, he was engaged inorganized crimes in the region, and this made him be listed as amongthe most wanted criminals by the FBI agent, in fact among the top tenmost wanted criminals (Dick &amp Gerard, 2015). After the sending ofWinter Hill Gang boss t prison, Bulger immediately took over theleadership position of the gang and continued with the orchestrationof the crimes such as gangland killings and also engaging in illegaldrug control businesses and trade in Boston area. Consequently amongthe offense dealings that he led the group to join and participate ininclude loan-shaking operations and bookmaking.

  1. Clueless Management

Anothertheme that can be established to be evident in the book is thepresence of clueless management system, especially the FBI managementsystem in the Boston city of America. The management was clueless ofthe collaboration that was taking place between the dangerouscriminal, Bulger, and the FBI agent, Connolly. Thus, the emergence ofclueless nature in the FBI management led to the vulnerability of theBoston citizens and residents of the town. As the FBI agent wasoffering protection to the criminal Bulger, no protection wasprovided to Boston city as well as the town residents. Had the FBIorganization and management became aware and had a clue, then theywould eventually have provided protection to Boston against thecriminal, Bulger (Rockefeller, 2016).

  1. Bad Behavior

Thereis also bad conduct theme that is evident in the book. It existsbetween the criminal and the FBI agent. The FBI rep providedprotection to the notorious criminal as he also wanted favors andsupport from the offender. Thus, the practice that was exhibited bythe FBI agent was awful, as his duties and roles are to protect thecitizens from criminals and to arrest them (Petersen, 2007). However,Connolly, the rep, was going against the ethical codes of conductinstead, he collaborated with the criminal.

PartII: Organizational Functions, Structures, and AdministrativeProcesses

Thecase organization in this study is the Federal Bureau Investigationgroup that has the initials FBI. Research shows that the FederalBureau of Investigation is an agency that deals with domesticintelligence as well as the security affairs in America. Thus, underthe laws and regulations of the United States of America, FBI servesas a prime organization in the nation under the federal lawenforcement agency. The FBI operates under the Division of Justice’sjurisdiction in the U.S. Thus currently, the FBI is categorized andincluded to be among the members of the United States of AmericaIntelligence Community. The duties, activities and operations of theFBI after being conducted, they are usually reported to the AG(Attorney General) and also to the DNI (Director, NationalIntelligence). It is also recognized as the leading organization inthe U.S. dealing with counterterrorism, criminal investigations andalso counterintelligence. The operation jurisdiction of FBI is thatthey are provided with violations of over 200 sets of the nationalcrimes.

TheFBI organization was founded in 1908 and during that time it wascalled BOI (Bureau of Investigations). Later, in 1935, the label wasaltered to the current Federal Bureau of Investigations and the headoffices of the institution are established in Washington, D.C.

Organizationof FBI Organization

Theorganization structure of the FBI organization is that at the headsits a director who oversees all the operations that are beingconducted in the institution. Thus, from the Director, who is thesenior official and head of the FBI organization, there is the DeputyDirector. The latter is followed by an Associate Deputy Director(ADD), then the Chief of Staff Senior Counselor (CSSC), the DeputyChief of Staff (DCS) as well as the Chief Information Officer (CIO).Thus, Board of Directors is involved in the setting of policies aswell as regulations that are the existing policies guiding theoperational activities in the FBI organization. However, the crisisthat the management faced, between the serious notorious criminal,Bulger and Connolly who was an FBI agent, the management was notinvolved in the crisis. The arrangement was an independent kind ofagreement between the FBI agent and the criminal (Jocelyn, 2011).Consequently, there was guidance and oversight, which were useful inthe handling of the crisis in the FBI agency. They did theinvestigation and later identified that there was bad behaviorexisting between the agent and the criminal, Whitey Bulger.

Roleof the FBI in the capturing of Whitey Bulger

Themanagement and officials in the FBI were instrumental and conductedoperations that saw the capturing and also the cornering of the mostnotorious and number one criminal on their most wanted list ofcriminals. Bulger was tracked down after a period of approximately 16years in the suburbs of LA (Roger, 2016). The management organizedthe crackdown through following Bulger`s girlfriend and their surgeonas Bulger’s girlfriend had undergone a series of breast surgeriesand the doctors would provide an excellent Intel on capturing thecriminal. Thus, the physician called the girl to inform her about thecrucial photographs and files that were in his possession. Theoperation caused the capture and sentencing of Bulger who had causedan intense embarrassment to the FBI agent for years. Thus, themanagement was involved in the capturing of the criminal.


  1. Collaboration in Crime Management

Thecollaboration in crime management is an example of the administrativemethods in the FBI organization. The plans define the organization`simage and a view of the world. The organizational collaborationapproaches propel the team to ensure that the country, United Statesof America, is protected from criminal individuals and offensiveactivities. Thus, these methods help in putting the organization onthe map as the critical institution that helps in fighting federalcriminal activities. The group claimed to follow the collaborationmechanisms in control and smoking out of criminals but instead, therewas a violation of this approach in that the FBI agent had sidedealings with a notorious criminal, John Whitey Bulger (Thomas &ampJohn, 2013). The FBI agent did not involve the management when heengaged in the transactions of providing protection to Bulger.Consequently, there are also other FBI agents who were bribed outthus, violating the teamwork and collaboration approaches that theorganization claimed to follow.

PartIII: Organization(s) as Human and Natural Systems

Theorganization, FBI has a decentralization duties, activities, andideas that are used to govern the relationship between the managersand the supporting staff employee. Thus, the decentralization systemhelps in the distribution of duties to different departments in theFBI organization (Michael, 2013). The units in the FBI organizationare highly decentralized. These divisions comprise FBI IntelligenceBranch (IB), FBI Criminal, Cyber, Response, and Service Branch.Furthermore, other branches in the FBI organization include the FBINational Security (NS) Branch, the FBI Science and Technology Branch,the FBI IT Branch as well as the FBI HR Branch.

Thedecentralized system ensures that the employees who are at a lowerrank follow the orders and the directives of the superiors and themanagers in the institution. Thus, each department and unit havedifferent roles and activities. For example, the FBI Human Resourceshas different duties and organizations that are separate from the FBICriminal, Cyber Response, and Service Branch. As the cyber responseand service branch will be dealing with cyber crime issues, the otherdepartments such as the HR department will be dealing with problemsand challenges relating to human resources. Hence, there isdecentralization in the FBI organization unit (Michael, 2013).

Theworking relationship of divisions across the agency is that alldepartments are tasked with their duties, and they have a manager ordirector who heads the overall department. Thus, the lower rankedemployees and officials in the different departments will report totheir departmental leader who will thus forward the report to theoverall director in the office. Therefore, the decentralization levelhelps in the efficient handling of different sections of crime by theFBI organization creating a healthy working relation by theinstitution between the managers and the employees.

PartIV: Perverse Impacts of Well-Intentioned Organization Structures &ampProcesses

  1. Decentralized Organization System

Thedecentralized organization system and approach that the FBIinstitution uses helped in the paving the way for the crime to takeplace. The decentralization system makes it difficult for the topmanagers to realize what is going on in different FBI agent units.For example, due to the decentralization system in the FBIinstitution, it was easier for the FBI agent to collaborate with thecriminals that it was easy for John Whitey Bulger to work with FBIagent Connolly without the overall management realizing what wastaking place.

Thus,there was a structural failure that made it easier for the FBI agentsto be bought out by the criminal, Whitey Bulger. The structuralfailure was that there was no adequate monitoring and evaluation ofthe organization`s system that would ensure the identification ofchallenges and loopholes causing a strengthening of the gaps.However, the structural failure made it difficult for the managementto identify the existing holes thus, paving a highway for the crimeactivities to be conducted by John Whitey Bulger (Kevin &amp Shelly,2013). Beauracratic dysfunctions were also present as the FBI agentsviolated the organization’s code of conduct, which were to hunt andeliminate criminals. Instead, agents such as Connolly interacted andeven offered protection to dangerous criminals such as John WhiteyBulger. Thus, the bureaucratic dysfunction was a major reason thatled to the existence of criminal activities in Boston as the FBI werebusy gunning down criminals forgetting to offer protection in Boston.

Actionssuch as offering security and protection for towns and states in theUS were taken for granted, leading to the organizational failure. TheFBI organization was busy engaging resources in the fight and huntsdown of the criminal Bulger and forgot to provide the protection toBoston town. Thus, this made it easy for the criminal John WhiteyBulger to conduct criminal activities in the city such as engaging inillegal drug businesses in the region and also taking over the gangleadership. The organization had failed in the provision of securityto the residents of Boston and in fact had taken this action forgranted.

  1. Waiting for crime to happen before investigations can be done

TheFBI organization always waits for the offense to take place beforeprobes can be conducted or done. Thus, this is categorized as aperverse impact of a well-intentioned organization structure. The aimand the role of the FBI team aisre to eliminate crime at the veryinitial stages and prevent the scenario from taking place. However,in most cases, the FBI department usually waits for the offensiveactivities to take place before they can engage in investigationactivities.

PartV: Quality Control and Oversight

Theoversight units have a role that they played in the case scenario ofthe criminal Bulger. As a supervisory unit, the FBI organization hada goal and a mandate which was to ensure that there is an eliminationof illegal activities within America. Furthermore, it is the duty ofthis agency’s units (FBI departments) to ensure that towns andcities in the US are free from crime and criminal activities.Furthermore, expanding the role that they engaged and participatedin, the FBI were keen on following and tracking down criminals in theU.S. (Cynthia, 2011). For example, in this case scenario, theorganization was engaged in the crackdown of John “Whitey”Bulger. Thus, it was an oversight role that aimed at ensuring themost wanted criminal in the FBI list is pinned down and locked inprison

TheFBI organization faces lots of crime and it is thus their oversightrole to ensure that these illegal activities are eliminated from theface of the country. The criminal activities that the organizationdeals with ranges from the white collar frauds, health care crimes,financial crimes as well as local organized crimes. John WhiteyBulger was engaged in organized crimes in the region, and it wasamong the oversight roles of the FBI organization to ensure thesecrimes are curbed to the lowest.

Challengesof the organization

  1. FBI suffered ineptitude in John Bulger’s case

Indefinition, incompetence is defined as the lack of skill and theability to handle issues. Therefore, in the criminal case of JohnWhitey Bulger, the organization did suffer the challenge and capacityto track down the most wanted criminal. Bulger was on the run forapproximately 16 years making it difficult for the FBI organizationto track him down. Moreover, the agency lacked skills as some of theFBI agents were bought out by the notorious criminal without themanagement knowing and understanding what is taking place,

  1. Lack of Resources

Thelack of resources can also be identified as the challenge that theFBI organization faced when it came to the criminal case of Bulger.Resources include the skills and knowledge on how to crack downcriminals. Thus, the group faced a challenge of effectively trackingdown the notorious criminal who was ever on the run. Moreover,resources include human personnel who can help in the conduction ofinvestigation and handling of offenders. The organization failed inhaving the right staff and employees to assist in the Bulger`s case.The available agents who were supposed to protect citizens fromcriminals were the specific individuals who were bought-out and gaveprotection to criminals for example John Connolly, the FBI agent.

  1. Negligence

Negligenceis another suffering that was evident in the FBI organization.Negligence is seen where the group are quick to find avenues that canbe used to track John Whitey Bulger down but instead forget to offerprotection to the citizens who are living in Boston town. Hence,negligence is among the challenges that the FBI organization facedduring the handling of John Whitey Bulger’s case.

PartVI: The Environment of the Organization

TheFBI group was nested with other departments and agencies dealing withcontrol and management of crime in the US. The job of controllingcrime are a grave and a challenging task that makes the FBIorganization have a series of collaborations and networks thatfacilitate the proper drive and handling of the crime issues. FBIworks closely with government departments and also private sectorsthrough partnerships every day and at every level to ensure thecontrol and the mitigation of the offense. The companies that FBIorganization collaborates with help to promote the direct support,investigations, and crime operations management.

ExternalFactors that made it difficult to arrest Bulger

  1. Collaboration with FBI agents

Thecollaboration that John Whitey Bulger had with the FBI agents was anexternal factor that made it difficult for the organization tocapture the criminal and at a shorter period entirely. Bulger hadcollaboration with John Connolly which was challenging for the teamto catch Bulger (Michael, 2013). The FBI agents provided protectionto the criminal and in most cases tipped him off of possible arrestpoints.

  1. Snitching of FBI agents

Therewas a murder of a junior member of the Bulger’s gang and oneindividual, and Brian Halloran went to the organization to providethem with the info about the murder. The witness was fearful andrequested to be placed under witness protection, but the FBI teamdeclined to place him under witness protection (Hope, 2012). SinceBulger had inside men working in the FBI organization, Connollyinformed Bulger that Brian Halloran had betrayed him by giving theFBI agents information about the murder of the gang member. Bulgertracked Halloran and killed him. Thus, such snitch activities by theFBI agents were factors that made the arrest of Bulger a challengeand instead fueled his crimes.

  1. Fear of the FBI Organization Exposure

Individualsand citizens hold onto the fact that the FBI team faced the externalfactor of its operations and classified details being exposed to thepublic. Thus, by having these fears the FBI team took a long time toarrest Bulger. They feared that if they arrested Bulger and made himstand the trials, he would expose the whole organization and make itvulnerable to criminal attacks. Thus, it might have also been areason that made Bulger is on the run for almost sixteen years.

Effectsof Environmental Pressure

Theenvironment had pressure on the FBI organization that, in somescenario, it is argued that it reduced the rate and functioning ofthe FBI team towards handling criminal cases. The environmentalpressure that resulted from the expectations of the community membersand the citizens made the FBI organization to be carried away withBulger`s case forgetting the safety and protection of the people ofBoston (William, 2014). The pressure from the government andcommunity members who had an expectation that the FBI organizationwould arrest Bulger was harmful in nature. It made the FBI teamdivert all their available resources on one case forgetting toprotect the citizens from the same criminal. Thus, it led to anincrease in gangland killings and illegal drug trafficking business.

Challengesof an Institutionalized organization

  1. Lack of an open system

Thelack of an open system causes a compromise in the handling ofscenarios and difficulties. Therefore, the FBI team in some case didnot have the open systems in the organization. Despite theorganization structure being a decentralized one, the openness of thestructure is vital to ensure that there is a success in the handlingof criminal activities and issues (Edward, 2011). The lack of an opensystem caused the backdoor dealings with criminals where FBI agentsthwarted the criminal investigation activities and made it difficultto hunt down notorious criminals (Patrick, 2012). Moreover, lack ofan open system made Connolly provide protection to Bulger.

  1. Corruption and Greed

Therewas corruption and greed among the FBI agents. The corruption andgreed led to the development of unethical behavior within theorganization being a challenge in an institutionalized group(Michael, 2013). Thus, the response made it easier for the agents tobe bought by the criminal and they instead offered protection forcrime offenders.

  1. Organization theory concept

Readingthe books state that every organization has an organizational theoryconcept that helps in the proper direction of the organization toachieve its goals and objectives (Patrick, 2012). Thus, in the caseof FBI group, the theory concept involves the control and maintainingof crime and criminal activities in the regions. Thus, theorganization failed in the utilization of the organizational theoryand concept as they failed to protect Boston from criminals whilethey were chasing after Bulger.

PartVII: The Legal Bottom line

  1. Engaging in illegal drug trades and business

Thecase, involving John Whitey Bulger did include the engaging incriminal activities such as illicit drug markets. There weredangerous drug dealers in the region, and Bulger had the intention ofcontrolling the business. According to testifying witnesses, itbecame evident that some drug barons had to relinquish their share inthe firm to Bulger. However, the relinquishing of shares was not afree trade as by doing so the gang members that Bulger wascontrolling would offer protection to the members who had to give uppart of their income and business to Bulger. Thus, drug traffickingis illegal in the United States of America, but this did not deterBulger from doing the illegal business and activity. Later, it becameapparent that he became the controlling individual of the greatestdrug trafficking cartel that even the FBI organization found itdifficult to crack down. The drug business was identified to have anextension in Boston covering both the north and the south corners ofBoston town.

  1. Murder Crimes

Thecase against John Whitey Bulger did involve murder cases and crimeactivities. An example of the assassination killings was when therewas the death of a young member of the Bulger`s gang. During thistime, a witness individual went to the FBI organization with the aimof providing the information on the killings (Dick &amp Gerard,2013). However, before the witness would give substantial informationabout the murder, he requested to be placed under witness protection.But Bulger had FBI agents who were protecting him. Thus, Connollytipped Bulger that Brian Halloran had betrayed him to the FBIorganization. The tipoff was serious, and Bulger engaged in trackingHalloran down and killed him eventually. Bulger was engaging inmurder activities, and this was among the dreaded activities that theorganization feared about Bulger.

  1. Extortion of money from citizens

Bulgerwas organizing a group of criminals who were after money and increaseof their financial wealth. He soon became the leader of the group,Winter Hill Gang and among the activities that Bulger was organizingto ensure that there was an increase in finance and wealth includedthe loan sharking businesses, racketeering conspiracies and also theextortion of citizens in the area. These activities were illegalactivities that fall under the criminal implications that can beevidenced by the case of John Whitey Bulger and the FBI agents.


  1. Compromising on FBI organization

Theunderstanding of FBI organization is an organizational impact thatcan be seen from the case of John Bulger. The books and readingmaterials identify Bulger as the worst criminal in the US. He was thedreaded criminal in the region, and this made it easier to compromisethe FBI organization. The commitment came in the form that thecriminal was able to buy out FBI agents, for example, the likes ofJohn Connolly. The role of John Connolly was to provide protection toBulger (Kevin, 2012). The idea was a backdoor kind of collaborationas the management of the FBI organization was not able to know thedealings that the FBI agents were having with the criminal. Thus, thecompromise had ethical implications in the administration process inthe FBI organization. The moral implication was that FBI agent arerequired to crack down criminals but here is the case where agentssuch as John Connolly were collaborating with criminals to the extentthat they were providing protection to the criminals making itdifficult for the FBI organization to crack and arrests thesecriminals.

PartVIII: Current State of Affairs, Organizational Reforms, and Quality

Theorganization, FBI organization in the current situation, has madesignificant improvements towards the elimination and the control ofcrimes in the region. There have been improvements in the area andthe organization as there are increased collaborations andpartnership with relevant stakeholders in the crime managementscenario (John, 2015). Among the collaborations that the FBI teamengages itself in includes the working with the private and also thegovernmental sectors to manage and control crime in the area. Suchorganizations even the international agencies such as Interpol helpin running the crimes and criminal activities. Thus, throughpartnership and collaboration, it becomes easy for the team tocontrol crime that is present such as organized crimes, fraud, andeven white collar crime activities.

Anotherimprovement in the organization also includes the increase incommunication among the top level management and the employees in theorganization (Bimbo, 2011). The organization has recognized theimportance of communication and the benefits it provides in thehandling and maintenance of crime. Communication helps in thecreation of a link between the employees and the managers (Richard,2011). The link translates to a healthy working relation where allmembers will feel as if they are part of the organization and engagein activities that do not compromise the organization`s credibilityand ethical codes of conduct (MatthewPatrick&amp Kim,2016).

Trainingof the employees in the organization is another improvement that hasbeen done by the FBI team. The FBI team has established that trainingof the employees and staff members helps in the motivation of theindividuals and also reducing the stress levels in the body. Heexercise helps in increasing the skills and knowledge of the peoplemaking them be able to handle crime activities and any challengesthat might occur in the institution.

Furthermore,the organization engages in effective monitoring and evaluation toolwhich helps in identifying any problems that are hindering theefficient performance of the team (Knapp, 2012). Monitoring andassessment assist in the assessing of the policies and the progressof the activities that are taking place in the FBI team. Throughsurveillance and evaluation, challenges that were exhibited in thecase relating to Bulger would have been identified at the earlierstages and eliminate early enough. Monitoring and assessment help inputting all the employees on the check to ensure that they are inline with the objectives of the organization.


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