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Bulger seeks information on witness

Lawyers for James “Whitey” Bulgerseeking information about alleged crimes that were committed in recent years by a former associate of the gangster who is slated to testify against him during his trial in federal court in Boston.

In a motion filed Thursday, Bulger’s attorneys said the government recently provided information about an inquiry this year into “complaints about John Martorano and his involvement in illegal activities.”

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Martorano has admitted to killing 20 people and served 12 years in prison. He is expected to testify against Bulger, 83, who is charged in a sweeping racketeering indictment with 19 murders and other crimes.

Bulger’s lawyers said they have received information that Martorano continued his involvement in criminal activity after his release from federal prison in 2007.

“The defense also has information that [a federal prosecutor] received a letter from a member of the Massachusetts State Police indicating that Martorano’s handlers in the State Police have been shielding him from investigations into his criminal conduct,” the lawyers wrote. They want prosecutors to turn over “all information in the possession of the government regarding allegations of and actual crimes committed by John Martorano since his release from prison.”

So far, 858 potential jurors have been called for Bulger’s trial, a high in federal court in Massachusetts, an official said. Jury selection continues Friday.

Milton J. Valencia of the Globe staff contributed to this report.
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