William Camuti Sentenced to Life Without the Possibility of Parole

A Massachusetts man found guilty of poisoning another man who was an alleged extortion victim of former mob boss James "Whitey" Bulger has been sentenced to life without parole.

William Camuti, 72, of Sudbury, was convicted of first degree murder Wednesday by a jury in the 2013 death of 59-year-old Quincy resident Stephen Rakes.

He was also sentenced to five to seven years on two counts of misleading a police officer to run concurrently and one year on the charge of improper disposal of human remains was placed on file.

Prosecutors said Camuti, who owed Rakes $100,000, invited Rakes to talk about his debt over coffee at a McDonald's in Waltham, where Camuti laced his victim's coffee with cyanide. Investigators say they discovered Camuti searched online how to buy cyanide and whether coffee would taste different "if it is mixed with sodium or potassium cyanide."

The victim's body was found in the woods in Lincoln by a jogger the day after he died.

Rakes' passing happened during Bulger's high-profile federal trial, which Rakes, who claimed Bulger stole his South Boston liquor store during the height of the mob boss' reign of terror, attended every day before he died. He had hoped to testify in Bulger's trial, but wasn't called by federal prosecutors. Bulger is currently serving two life terms. 

Contact Us