The riveting account of former head of Massachusetts State Police Thomas J. Foley’s twenty-year pursuit of murderous Boston gangster Whitey Bulger, and of Foley’s key role in exposing the FBI’s protection of Bulger’s criminal empire.
June 23, 2011. The news of the notorious gangster Whitey Bulger’s capture—after sixteen years on the FBI’s Most Wanted list—swept the nation. Many breathed a sigh of relief. But for Thomas J. Foley, a former Massachusetts state police colonel and the investigator who sparked Bulger’s flight from Boston, the moment was bittersweet. The FBI may have caught Bulger, but as Foley had painfully discovered almost two decades before, they were also responsible for his escape.
It has been known that Whitey Bulger was a secret informant for the FBI, but it has never been revealed—until now—that the FBI was actually actively protecting Bulger from Foley, effectively derailing Foley’s efforts to stop Bulger’s horrific crime sprees time and again. At one point, the FBI even presented Foley with a plaque at a holiday party that read “the Most Hated Man in Law Enforcement,” a not-so-subtle suggestion that he and his team should lay off their investigation.
Most Wanted is a true-life thriller, and Foley is the hero at its center. His investigative efforts resulted in criminal convictions of a half-dozen of Boston’s most notorious thugs and also led to the conviction of John Connolly, one of the FBI agents who abetted Bulger; Connolly is now serving a forty-year prison sentence. In this book, Foley, a cop’s cop, honestly recounts how his wide-eyed admiration for the nation’s top law enforcement agency was gradually transformed by dark realities he didn’t want to believe.
In 2004, Thomas J. Foley was awardedthe United States Attorney General’s Award for Exceptional Service for his role in the Whitey Bulger/John Connolly investigation. A career officer with the Massachusetts State Police, Col. Thomas J. Foley rose to become its highest ranking officer in 2001. Since retiring in 2004, Foley teaches criminology at the University of New Hampshire.
John Sedgwick is the author of Blood Moon: An American Epic of War and Splendor in the Cherokee Nation, and twelve other books: four works of literary nonfiction, two novels, a family memoir, and five collaborative books. He has also written several hundred magazine stories for The Atlantic, GQ, Newsweek,Esquire, and Vanity Fair. He is married to the CNN analyst and Financial Times columnist Rana Foroohar, and lives in Brooklyn, New York.