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Claude Barnes Capehart?

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The following story appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle on July the 5th, 1995.

One thing though, it says Capehart claimed to have worked on Howard Hughes' Glomar Explorer which raised a Soviet sub in 1968. The sub actually went down in 1968 but wasn't raised until 1974 - which was Project Jennifer.

Also, in the comparison which follows the story, the man on the right was being sought for questioning by HSCA investigators and his image was published in various newspapers. The man on the left was photographed in Dealey Plaza (right in front of the TSBD) after the shooting.

Is the man on the right Capehart?

Some food for thought?



Judge Sues Over JFK Information

He wants CIA to Answer Questions on Mystery Man

It was the kind of case any hard-boiled DA or cop might look at skeptically -- a Central Valley woman believes her mysterious boyfriend was in a CIA conspiracy to assassinate President John F. Kennedy, and she fears for her life.

The boyfriend tells her that Lee Harvey Oswald, the reputed assassin, was just an innocent bystander and that others fired the fatal shots. Top-secret government codes are found on papers in his house. Evidence about the man's possible complicity in the assassination is given to congressional investigators and then disappears during a burglary in Washington. The CIA refuses to talk about it.

And then, years later, the boyfriend dies of a heart attack just hours before he is to be interviewed by the district attorney and a sheriff's detective.

Oliver Stone, where are you?

This may sound like the kind of farfetched tale concocted by wild- eyed conspiracy theorists, but in fact it is the stuff of a lawsuit filed in federal court in Fresno by a respected Madera County judge acting as a private citizen, one who does not like it when the CIA tells him to get off its case.

The judge, who was the district attorney at the time, is David Minier, 61 -- and he now sits on the Municipal Court bench in Chowchilla. He gained a certain fame in the 1970s for prosecuting three young men who had kidnapped 26 Chowchilla schoolchildren and their bus driver.

Two years ago, using the Freedom of Information Act, he sued the CIA after the agency refused to tell Minier whether Claude Barnes Capehart had ever been employed by the CIA and whether Capehart was in Dallas in November 1963, when Kennedy was assassinated.

A federal judge dismissed Minier's suit, but Minier, who is doing all the legal work himself, is appealing the decision to the U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco.

The judge may be tilting at windmills -- thousands of books and articles over the past 33 years have failed to come up with a definitive solution to Kennedy's death, the Warren Commission's report notwithstanding. But Minier says he is suing the CIA to release the Kennedy assassination documents as a way to preserve this ``historical research'' on the public record for generations to come.

``I wanted to get it into some form of permanent record,'' he said earlier this week, ``so that if there's any validity to this thing, then the information will be there as a resource. Anything you file in court is there for all time. And someone may come along who has a lot more ability in doing research than I do, and the material will still be there.''

Minier's odd quest about the Kennedy assassination started nearly 20 years ago, when Capehart moved to Chowchilla and opened a well-drilling business. Soon Capehart came to the county sheriff's office and said some men had been sent from ``back East'' to kill him. Sergeant Dale Fore said he would look into it. But after scouring the dusty Central Valley town (population: 6,000), he could find no assassins.

But Capehart seemed like an interesting guy to Fore, and soon he was confiding to the sergeant that he had done some work for the CIA. After a while, Fore called a friend at the FBI and asked about Capehart. Both men concluded that Capehart was a fake, but Minier and Fore were later told by a retired FBI agent that Capehart had been employed by the CIA.

Capehart had told his female friend that he once worked on industrialist Howard Hughes' Glomar Explorer, a deep-sea research vessel that, under CIA sponsorship, raised a Soviet submarine from the floor of the Pacific Ocean in 1968.

In 1978, Kennedy assassination theories were at such a full boil in the United States that Congress formed the House Select Committee on Assassinations and began digging into the tons of muck raked up over the preceding 15 years by dozens of investigators.

Back in Chowchilla, Capehart's female friend, who had seen newspaper photographs of possible assassination conspirators being sought by the committee's investigators, came to Fore and said Capehart's face was in one of the pictures.

The woman, who still fears retribution and declines to be publicly identified even years after Capehart's death, said Capehart told her he was ``in the (Texas School Book) Depository when the president was shot, and Oswald wasn't the only one involved at that time,'' Fore wrote in his police report, which ended up as part of Minier's lawsuit.

She also reportedly said: ``Oswald was not the person who shot the president. Capehart showed (her) a handgun with a silencer, automatic firearms, a cyanide pistol, and passports under an assumed name.'' Capehart, apparently disturbed by the publicity of the congressional investigation, moved to Pahrump, Nev., to lie low.

Then the woman brought Fore a sheet filled with what appeared to be ciphers. She said she had found it in Capehart's papers. Fore added it to his file.

In early 1979, while the House assassinations committee was in full-bore operation, Fore traveled to Washington to attend an FBI training course, a routine career assignment for many local law enforcement officers. While there, he called up committee staffers and told them his tale. They seemed interested and took his information, including the cipher sheet.

When he finished his training course several weeks later, Fore stopped by and asked to have his evidence back. The FBI agents who had interviewed him at the time gave him some of it, but kept the code sheet, saying the ciphers were ``classified government codes.'' When Fore got back to Madera County, he heard that the committee office he had visited had been burglarized, and the evidence he had given the committee's investigators had been stolen.

In July 1979, the assassinations committee concluded that conspiracies were ``likely'' in Kennedy's death. But 17 years later, no government agency has confirmed or refuted that conclusion.

In 1989, Fore and Minier prepared to interview Capehart at his home in Nevada. A few hours before they were to meet him, Capehart, 64, dropped dead of a heart attack.

``After he died,'' Minier said, ``things kind of dried up, in terms of information, and so there was nothing else to do but ask the CIA about it.''

So far, the CIA is saying nothing about Claude Capehart.

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Thanks for that post. The subject of Claude Capehart was written about in Probe magazine which Jim DiEugenio and Lisa Pease put out in the 90's. I was so fascinated by this account that I called the sheriff's office in/near Fresno and spoke with a retired officer (maybe Fore) who confirmed that Capehart's California driver's license did not have a photo on it, which was required by law. I asked if they had a photo and he told me they did, but had looked for it for quite some time without success. He promised to call me if he found it and I never heard from him again. The Probe article/s mention Capehart's concern about the HSCA releasing numerous Dealey Plaza photos and that he was visible in at least one. From my recollection, Capehart confirmed that Oswald didn't fire any shots and was on the 1st or 2nd floor where he was told to be. The photo you posted is quite interesting and I was wondering if I would ever get to see who Capehart was. The info about the guns, silencer, cyanide pistol is new to me. I believe it was DiEugenio who suggested to Minier to proceed with a FOIA request which finally yielded some results on Capehart.

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Here's a follow-up article, found on the Fair Play website, from The San Francisco Chronicle, July 9, 1995, on the judge's suit.

Court Denies Bid for Records in JFK Death

Judge Had Sued CIA for Information

The U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco ruled yesterday against a Chowchilla judge who had said in a lawsuit that the CIA may have information about a man possibly involved in a conspiracy to kill President John F. Kennedy.

David Minier, 61, acting as a private citizen, sued the CIA two years ago under the Freedom of Information Act after the agency refused to tell him whether it had employed a Chowchilla man, possibly as an assassin. A three-judge panel of the appellate court said the ``plain language'' of federal law ``expressly provides that the CIA is exempted from disclosing the names of its employees.''

Minier, a Chowchilla Municipal Court judge, said he had not yet seen the ruling and therefore could not say whether he will ask the U.S. Supreme Court to hear his case.

``I'm not really too optimistic,'' Minier said of his chances that the high court would agree to review Minier's brief against the CIA. ``I'd have to think of (some legal tenet) that would interest the court enough for them to take it.''

In Sacramento, Assistant U.S. Attorney Camil Skipper, who represented the CIA, said, ``We are, obviously, pleased with the court's decision.'' The appeals court was upholding an earlier decision by U.S. District Court Judge Garland Burrell in Sacramento.

Minier's crusade began after the CIA refused to tell him whether Claude Barnes Capehart, a mysterious well driller who moved to Chowchilla in 1976, was ever an agency employee and whether he was in Dallas in November 1963 when Kennedy was assassinated.

Capehart himself had told Madera County Sheriff's Detective Dale Fore that he had done some work for the CIA. Minier and Fore later learned, through a friend at the FBI, that Capehart had worked on the Glomar Explorer, the deep- sea research vessel that had raised a Soviet submarine from the Pacific Ocean floor for the CIA. A woman who was Capehart's friend told detectives that Capehart had told her he was involved in the Kennedy assassination. Capehart died of a heart attack in 1989 at the age of 64.

The appellate court, while rejecting Minier's claims, was clearly intrigued by this tale and particularly with the idea that Minier may have unearthed information that could shed new light on the Kennedy assassination.

``Certain historical facts are unassailable, while others are constantly subject to attack and, ultimately, remain shrouded in mystery and confusion,'' Judge A. Wallace Tashima wrote in the court's unanimous opinion. ``Both types of facts surround the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.''

Tashima said it is indisputably known that Kennedy was ``tragically shot and killed'' in Dallas and that ``Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested and portrayed to the public as the sole assassin.''

``Over the past 30 years, however, many people have debated the accuracy of the sole assassin theory, positing that one individual could not have accomplished the task alone,'' Tashima wrote. ``Although many conspiracy theories have been generated through the years, the most infamous theory alleges CIA involvement in the assassination.''

In 1975, Tashima said, the Rockefeller Commission found ``no credible evidence of any CIA involvement.'' But in 1979, without specifying the CIA or any other government agency as a conspirator, the House Select Committee on Assassinations reported that conspiracies were ``likely'' in Kennedy's death. That assertion has been neither confirmed nor denied.

The appellate court judges found, in their new ruling, that because federal law exempts the CIA from saying whether Capehart ever worked for the agency, at any time, the agency ``. . . may also decline to disclose Capehart's alleged CIA activities during November 1963. Release of such information would not only tacitly reveal whether Capehart had an employment relationship, but would also provide a window into the CIA's `sources and methods.' ''

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Thanks, guys.

Capehart is certainly interesting. Getting information on his background has proved most difficult. Finding associations with CIA even more so. If he was involved with the assassination, I guess a good place to start would be past working relationships with JM/WAVE or as an asset of covert operations.

Given that he worked on the Hughes' owned Glomar Explorer, then he may also have been associated with Hughes' Tool Company on Cay Sal and hence have been known to C. Osment Moody.

Tom Moody (C. Osment Moody's son) has recently joined us here at the forum so hopefully he will read this and be able to offer a comment.

Leads for this aspect are few and far between.


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Not worth much James... :(

Capehart himself had told Madera County Sheriff's Detective Dale Fore that he had done some work for the CIA. Minier and Fore later learned, through a friend at the FBI

NARA has what appears to be 7 fairly useless hits on Claude - but I thought it was interesting that there appeared to be a Charles L. Capehart in the FBI, with 7 similar records, all dated 11/23/63. Maybe someone has pulled one of these, and there is a connection?

            AGENCY : FBI

      RECORD NUMBER : 124-10173-10436





              FROM : CAPEHART, CHARLES L.

                TO : SAC, TP

              TITLE : [No Title]

              DATE : 11/23/1963

              PAGES : 1






DATE OF LAST REVIEW : 12/06/1996


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James - the Probe article was Index Vol. 4, No. 1 Nov-Dec, 1996. I don't have it, but their website says that back issues are available through the Last Hurrah. No reference to Capehart in 'The Assassinations.'

Even more interesting if Capehart was involved in Chile as well.

The Capehart Caper.

Chronicles the 20 year saga of Claude Capehart, who revealed to those close to him that he was a former CIA operative involved in the Glomar Explorer episode, the CIA coup in Allende's Chile, and the assassination of President Kennedy. We reveal the attempt of a California judge to get the CIA records on Capehart, if any, and what the decision in that case signifies.


Tim Weiner, "How the CIA Took Aim at Allende," New York Times, September 12, 1998


WASHINGTON -- From 1970 to 1973, the United States sought to overthrow the government of Chile and its democratically elected president, Dr. Salvador Allende, whom it deemed a Marxist threat to U.S. interests. Under orders from President Richard M. Nixon, the CIA mounted a full-tilt covert operation to keep Allende from taking office and, when that failed, undertook subtler efforts to undermine him. Those efforts "never really ended," the CIA's director of operations at the time, Thomas Karamessines, later told Senate investigators.

Twenty-five years ago last week, on Sept. 11, 1973, the Chilean military seized power, The junta, under Gen. Augusto Pinochet, ruled until 1990. Its death squads murdered more than 3,000 people, and it jailed and tortured thousands more. Chile is still trying to come to terms with the damage done to its democratic institutions.

The declassified government documents excerpted below were collected by the National Security Archive, a nonprofit research group in Washington that has sought to uncover secret records since 1985. They were posted on its website (www.seas.gwu.edu/nsarchive) on Friday.

They show how much the United States was committed to thwarting Allende even before he took office, and they illustrate a fact that was not well understood during the Cold War: The CIA very rarely acted as a rogue elephant. When it plotted coups and shipped guns to murderous colonels, it did so on orders from the president.



U.S. Ambassador Edward Korry, in a cable titled "No Hopes for Chile'," advised Washington on Sept. 8, 1970:

Civility is the dominant characteristic of Chilean life . . . And civility is what makes almost certain the triumph of the very uncivil Allende. Neither the President nor the Armed Forces have the stomach for the violence they fear would be the consequence of intervention.


The ambassador followed up on Sept. 11 with a new cable, "The Communists Take Over Chile."

There is a graveyard smell to Chile, the fumes of a democracy in decomposition. They stank in my nostrils in Czechoslovakia in 1948 and they are no less sickening today.


On Sept. 15, Richard Helms, director of Central Intelligence, took handwritten notes at a White House meeting with President Richard M. Nixon, Attorney General John Mitchell and National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger, who was also the new secretary of state.

1 in 10 chance perhaps, but save Chile! . . worth spending . . . not concerned risks involved . . . no involvement of embassy . . . $10,000,000 available, more if necessary . . . full-time job -- best men we have . . . game plan . . . make the economy scream . . . 48 hours for plan of action


On Sept. 16, William Broe, chief of the CIA's Western Hemisphere division, met with Helms and other senior CIA officers.

The Director (of Central Intelligence) told the group that President Nixon had decided that an Allende regime in Chile was not acceptable to the United States. The President asked the Agency to prevent Allende from coming to power or to unseat him. The President authorized ten million dollars for this purpose, if needed. Further, the Agency is to carry out this mission without coordination with the Departments of State or Defense. . . . The Director said he had been asked by Dr. Henry Kissinger . . . to meet with him on Friday, 18 September, to give him the Agency's views on how this mission could be accomplished.


On Oct. 16, a cable went out from CIA headquarters to Henry Heckscher, CIA station chief in Santiago, Chile, who had doubts about the plots.

It is firm and continuing policy that Allende be overthrown by a coup. It would be much preferable to have this transpire prior to 24 October but efforts in this regard will continue vigorously beyond this date. We are to continue to generate maximum pressure toward this end utilizing every appropriate resource. It is imperative that these actions be implemented clandestinely and securely so that the United States government and American hand be well hidden. . . . Please review all your present and possibly new activities to include propaganda, black operations, surfacing of intelligence or disinformation, personal contacts, or anything else your imagination can conjure which will permit you to press forward toward our (deleted) objective.


Plans were already in motion. Five days earlier, on Oct. 11, Broe sent this cable from CIA headquarters to the Santiago station:



  The United States did not spur the Chilean military to act, but it was not for want of trying, as shown by an internal C.I.A. report, "Chilean Task Force Activities," dated Nov.18.

On 15 September 1970, C.I.A. was directed to try to prevent Marxist Salvador Allende's ascent to the Chilean Presidency. . . .

A military coup increasingly suggested itself as the only possible solution to the Allende problem. Anti-Allende currents did exist in the military and the Carabineros, but were immobilized by the tradition of military respect for the Constitution. . . .

[The C.I.A.'s propaganda efforts included] special intelligence and "inside" briefings given to U.S. journalists. . . . Particularly noteworthy in this connection was the Time cover story which owed a great deal to written materials and briefings provided by C.I.A. . . . C.I.A. briefings in Washington [deleted] changed the basic thrust of the story in the final stages according to another Time correspondent. It provoked Allende to complain on 13 October, "We are suffering the most brutal and horrible pressure, both domestic and international," singling out Time in particular as having "openly called" for an invasion of Chile.   


Another report, "Postmortem on the Chilean Presidential Election," by Mr. Helms to Gen. Alexander Haig, Mr. Kissinger's military aide, weighed the stakes.

On 3 November 1970, Dr. Salvador Allende became the first democratically elected Marxist head of state in the history of Latin America -- despite the opposition of the U.S. Government. As a result, U.S. prestige and interests in Latin America and, to some extent, elsewhere are being affected materially at a time when the U.S. can ill afford problems in an area that has traditionally been accepted as the U.S. "backyard."


From November 1970 until September 1973, when the military seized power, the C.I.A. spent $8 million undermining President Allende. When the coup came, the United States knew about the plans and encouraged them, but played no direct role . Three weeks later, a United States military intelligence officer reconstructed the day


H-HOUR 0600

Chile's coup d'etat was close to perfect. Unfortunately, "close" only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades. . . . Original plan called for President Allende to be held incommunicado in his home until the coup was a fait accompli. H-hour delay in Santiago permitted Allende to be alerted at 0730. Allende immediately dashed to the palace . . . [where] he had access to radio communications facilities which permitted him to personally implore "workers and students, come to the Moneda and defend your Government against the Armed Forces." The hour was 0830.

. . . Military had all roads to Santiago blocked. Lid was on TIGHT inside city. Everyone on streets not wearing right color jersey stood an excellent chance of getting shot. Allende managed to personally broadcast two "MAYDAY" messages. The first, at 0830, sounded strong and confident as he summoned the workers and students. The second at 0945 sounded morose, almost as if he was preparing the eulogy for his dying government. It was his last broadcast as the Air Force soon located and rocketed his antennae. The hour was 1015. . . .

Allende was found alone and dead in his office off the inner courtyard. He had killed himself by placing a sub-machine gun under his chin and pulling the trigger. Messy, but efficient. The gun was lying near his body. A gold metal plate imbedded in the stock was inscribed "To my good friend Salvador Allende from Fidel Castro." Obviously Communist Cuba had sent one too many guns to Chile for their own good. The hour was 1345. . . .

Semper Fidelis

Patrick J. Ryan

Lieutenant Colonel, USMC     

Postscript: After 17 years as Chile's dictator, General Pinochet relinquished power to a civilian government in 1990. But he remained commander in chief of the armed forces, stepping down from that post only last March. In a farewell ceremony, the old general praised the armed forces as "the savior of democracy" in Chile.

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to my mind the proportions are very similar,. are there better copies of the fig in front of TSBD (ibelieve). I think I saw that one as a frame from one of the films?? at the time I seem to remember thinking it reminded me of lovelady.

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6. Claude Barnes Capehart

One researcher inquired whether a Claude Barnes Capehart was ever an employee, directly or indirectly, under any name, whether on salary or contract, of the CIA, or a company, business, agency, or other entity operated by the CIA. The HSCA was interested in Capehart, who claimed to have been in Dallas, Texas, on November 22, 1963, as a CIA employee. The CIA granted Review Board staff full access to its records on Capehart.

CIA records state that Capehart worked for two different private business contractors on U.S. government classified projects, but the records the Review Board examined do not show that CIA ever employed him as an officer, staffer, asset, or source. The records indicate that at least one of the private contractors for whom Capehart worked, Global Marine, Inc., did have CIA contracts. The records further indicate that a background investigation was run on Capehart in August and September 1973, so that he could work on those contracts as a crane operator/driller from October 30, 1973 to July 9, 1975. As part of his work with Global Marine Inc., Capehart signed secrecy agreements with CIA in October 1973 and January 1975.

The CIA holds two files on CapehartÑan Office of Security File and a medical file. The CIA processed its Office of Security file as part of the segregated collection. The medical file, not part of CIA's segregated collection, concerns an accident which occurred on one of the construction sites, and the Review Board did not believe it was relevant. The medical file does not contain any information on or evidence of any possible psychological problems. The CIA reported that it has never had an Office of Personnel file or a 201 file on Capehart.

There is no evidence in either the Office of Security file or the medical file to suggest that Capehart worked for the CIA on any additional contracts nor in any capacity, direct or indirect, other than as the employee of a private contractor, Global Marine, Inc., working on CIA contracts. There is no evidence in the files that the Review Board saw to suggest that CIA ever assigned him a pseudonym or that he used another name. Finally, there is no information in the records to support Capehart's allegations concerning the Kennedy assassination nor to confirm his whereabouts during the relevant time period.



TASHIMA, Circuit Judge:

Invoking the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C.S 552 et seq. ("FOIA"), plaintiff-appellant David Minier ("Minier") requested defendant-appellee Central Intelligence Agency (the "CIA") to disclose whether Claude Barnes Capehart

("Capehart"), acting as a CIA agent, was involved in a CIA plot to assassinate President John F. Kennedy. The CIA, relying on certain exemptions to the FOIA, refused to confirm or deny Capehart's alleged employment with the CIA. The district court granted summary judgment for the CIA, and Minier appeals.

We have jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. S 1291. Because the CIA is exempted from disclosing agent names under the plain language of 50 U.S.C. SS 403g and 403-3©(5), we affirm.


Certain historical facts are unassailable, while others are constantly subject to attack and, ultimately, remain shrouded in mystery and confusion. Both types of facts surround the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. We know beyond dispute, that on November 22, 1963, President Kennedy was tragically shot and killed while traveling through the streets of Dallas, Texas. We also know that a single individual, Lee Harvey Oswald, was arrested and portrayed to the public as the sole assassin. Over the past thirty years, however, many people have debated the accuracy of the sole assassin theory, positing that one individual could not have accomplished the task alone. Although many conspiracy theories have been generated through the years, the most infamous theory alleges CIA involvement in the assassination.1 In June, 1975, the Rockefeller Commission, established by President Ford, released a report finding "no credible evidence of any CIA involvement." H.R.Rep. No. 625(II), 102d Cong., 2d Sess. 10 (1992) (quoting Report to the President by the Comm'n on CIA Activities within the U.S., June 1975, at 269). As this case reveals, however, concerns about the role the CIA played in the Kennedy assassination have not yet been laid to rest.

Capehart, who died in 1989, claimed to have been a CIA agent involved in the assassination of President Kennedy. In February, 1992, Minier made a FOIA request of the CIA to determine whether the CIA had ever employed Capehart, directly or indirectly. In March, 1992, the CIA denied the request based on its policy never to "confirm nor deny the past or present affiliation of individuals with the CIA."

In April, 1992, Minier administratively appealed this decision within the CIA. The CIA responded that there would be a delay in the consideration of his appeal because of a backlog of 400 earlier filed appeals. In June, 1994, Minier expanded his original request to include all records of the "activities, assignments, actions and whereabouts of Claude Barnes Capehart during the month of November, 1963." In October, 1994, the CIA denied Minier's appeal. Relying on Exemptions 1 and 3 of FOIA, 5 U.S.C. SS 552(Bs(1 and 3), the CIA concluded that to confirm or deny a relationship between the CIA and Capehart would jeopardize national security and compromise CIA sources and methods.

In July, 1994, before the CIA acted on his appeal, Minier filed this action to compel the CIA to release the requested information.2 In August, 1994, Minier filed a motion for a Vaughn index. 3 The magistrate judge denied the motion, concluding that the parties' legal arguments would not be aided by an index of CIA documents pertaining to Capehart.

The CIA thereafter sought summary judgment. The CIA submitted a declaration in support of its motion ("CIA declaration"), which explained that protection of the identities of CIA personnel is necessary for the development, maintenance and protection of secret contacts both in the United States and abroad. The district court granted the CIA's motion for summary judgment and denied Minier's motion for reconsideration of the magistrate's denial of a Vaughn index. The district court concluded: (1) the information was properly exempted under both Exemptions 1 and 3; (2) there was no evidence of CIA bad faith; and (3) a Vaughn index would not aid Minier's ability to contest the applicability of the exemptions. This appeal followed.


I. Standard of Review

Ordinarily, we review summary judgments de novo. In FOIA cases, because of their unique nature, we have adopted a two-step standard of review. Schiffer v. FBI, 78 F.3d 1405, 1408 (9th Cir. 1996).

Unlike the typical summary judgment analysis, in a FOIA case, we do not ask whether there is a genuine issue of material fact, because the facts are rarely in dispute. Id. at 1409. We must first determine whether the district court had an adequate factual basis upon which to base its decision. Painting Indus. of Hawaii Market Recovery Fund v. United States Dep't of the Air Force, 26 F.3d 1479, 1482 (9th Cir. 1994). If so, the district court's conclusion of an exemption's applicability is reviewed de novo. Schiffer, 78 F.3d at 1409.

II. Exemption 3 of FOIA


Edited by Bernice Moore
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  • 2 months later...

From the news article in Ron's post:

The appellate court, while rejecting Minier's claims, was clearly intrigued by this tale and particularly with the idea that Minier may have unearthed information that could shed new light on the Kennedy assassination.

I do not read it the decision as the newspaper did. When the court characterized the theory of CIA involvement in the assassination as "infamous" I think it was messaging its scorn of that theory. An attitude shared, of course, ny most of the "establishment".

But if the CIA is entitled to withhold names and addreses of employees, informants, etc. Minier would have lost regardless of the court's opinion of the theory of CIA complicity in the dastardly deed in Dallas.

Edited by Tim Gratz
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From the news article in Ron's post:

The appellate court, while rejecting Minier's claims, was clearly intrigued by this tale and particularly with the idea that Minier may have unearthed information that could shed new light on the Kennedy assassination.

I do not read it the decision as the newspaper did.  When the court characterized the theory of CIA involvement in the assassination as "infamous" I think it was messaging its scorn of that theory. An attitude shared, of course, ny most of the "establishment".

But if the CIA is entitled to withhold names and addreses of employees, informants, etc. Minier would have lost regardless of the court's opinion of the theory of CIA complicity in the dastardly deed in Dallas.


Jim Lesar, Esq. is the highest rated FOIA expert in this community, and he might well agree that the good judge should have petitioned for a "Vaughan Index" while the matter was still in the "Administrative Law" arena.

As for Capehart, we knew him as "George Damon" during 1962. The NARA FBI files

[both "302s" & "LHMs"] describe him as a transient gun dealer. He first showed up amidst our Missile Crisis operations during the Summer of 1962, which automatically made him suspect. He arrived at the doorstep of our "Federicos" safehouse on NW 6th Ave., driving a gaudy white Cadillac convertible; with the top down of course.

[Tom Dunkin mentions having to sleep in a car outside Federico's one night]

Damon got to the point quickly, in his, what I then thought then, was a Texas, not "Okie" twang. He had guns for us, but we would have to run a "special" mission with these weapons before we could use them elsewhere. When warned that the local cops & ATTU were "coming-down-heavy" on gun-runners, he pulled out a brand new business card with the name of a Justice Department official embossed thereon, along with the usual color DOJ seal. He stated more than once that anytime he was stopped by Feds, he simply displayed one of these cards, and told the agents to make the call from a secure telephone -- which quickly caused them to ride off into the sunset !!

When I stated that this wouldn't work with local cops, he said that he didn't exhibit the card, but simply stonewalled them, or bailed himself out of the "vagrancy" charge; but if a ranking cop entered the picture, he would direct him to call the Miami FBI/FO for further info. This routinely caused his immediate release and the return of his impounded convertible "Canoe".

Manolo Reboso stated [at the Banak Lumber Company "cover" office] that he had seen Damon at Hickory Hill more than once, and that folks there considered him to be a quite reckless "wild-card" -- but in Spanish he used "rienda suelta" [loose reined]; and that we should be careful in dealing with this "Yonny".

Years later, when infrequently watching "Starsky & Hutch", the actor David Soul would remind me of this clown.

We never heard anything on him after 1962, and it was the FOIA releases which reminded us of this one of the many strange dudes-about-town of the era.




"What, me worry !! -- Alfred E. Neumann, 1953.


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Gerry, a couple of asides.

I enjoy your input here for a number of reasons. One is the language. I find coming from a different part of the world I have to learn things in order to understand the finer nuances of for example testimony. I'm referring here to a dictionary of Civil War slang which defines a Johnathan as a 'downeaster' and 'a yankee'. Is it correct to read that Manolo Rebosos use of the word 'yonny' is an indication that the Cuban Exiles had a greater affinity with the southerners?

Also, have you come across the word 'cattywampus' as used to describe a spatial relationship. IE 'that building is cattywampus of this one'. Does this word also carry some hierarchical connotations, ie. 'this building is in a worse (or better) position'?

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