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Bulger girlfriend lied on family contact, officials say

Federal prosecutors say in new court documents that the girlfriend of James “Whitey’’ Bulger lied to authorities when the two were arrested June 22 in California, after 16 years together on the run.

The documents allege that Catherine Greig lied to pretrial services officials when she told them she had not spoken to family members or friends in more than 17 years, though prosecutors have proven that she spoke to her twin sister and an acquaintance after she left with Bulger in 1995.

Margaret McCusker,Greig’s sister, and Kathleen McDonough, an acquaintance, pleaded guilty to perjury and obstruction of justice in lying to a grand jury about their contacts with Greig.

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Also, court documents said Greig told the pretrial officials that she has not left the country in more than two decades, though she later admitted to traveling to Mexico with Bulger to obtain prescription medications for him. Greig also allegedly misled officials by failing to disclose how many forms of identification she had.

“Numerous other statements the defendant made to pretrial services in Massachusetts were false or misleading omission,’’ the documents state.

The documents were submitted as part of prosecutors’ arguments that Greig should remain in prison pending her trial on charges of harboring a fugitive, saying she has proved to be a flight risk. Greig, who was first indicted in 1997, was herself a fugitive for 14 years.

“The evidence that Greig is a significant flight risk is overwhelming and easily satisfied the government’s burden of providing this point by a preponderance of the evidence,’’ prosecutors said in the documents.

Greig, 60, faces up to five years in prison if convicted of harboring Bulger since his first indictment in 1995. He is accused of running a crime ring responsible for 19 murders.

Kevin Reddington, Greig’s attorney, has proposed putting up Greig’s Quincy home and her sister’s South Boston home, totalling about $900,000 in assessed value, to secure her bail.

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But prosecutors argue that the title for the South Boston home is too murky to be used as a bail source. They also argue that Greig has shown her willingness to walk away from any assets, as she showed by leaving her Quincy home and pets to join Bulger on the run in 1995.

“Financial conditions such as posting a house as security are inadequate when the evidence demonstrates that the defendant’s allegiance to a criminal such as Bulger is far more important than her allegiance to any family member,’’ prosecutors say in the court documents.

Officials said Greig and Bulger had identification for more than 10 aliases, as well as more than $820,000 in cash and 30 weapons in their Santa Monica apartment when they were arrested. Prosecutors say Greig could face additional charges beyond the crime of harboring a fugitive.


Milton J. Valencia can be reached at mvalencia@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @miltonvalencia.