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Cryptonym: AMHELM-1

Definition:
Antonio Perez Quesada. His 201 number, 201-328512, matches that of AMHELM-1's. He was a captain of vessels, a fisherman guide, and a gun runner. He was officially a CIA asset or agent for only a few months, from around February 1963 to May/June 1963.
Status:
Documented
Discussion:
Was terminated due to his involvement in the Comandos-66 raid on the Baku Soviet vessel in March 1963 - despite the CIA in Miami having knowledge of the planned attack before it took place and apparently not doing anything to prevent it from taking place. He was put on the INS prevention notice in April 1963. After his departure from the CIA he apparently went on to be involved with JURE. He was also an FBI informant from at least late 1962 to early 1965.
Sources:

124-10298-10283: FBI REPORT: INTERCONTINENTAL PENETRATION FORCES (INTERPEN)

10/27/61, FBI Miami report from Robert James Dwyer to Director: "SYNOPSIS: On 10/16/61, AURELIANO SANCHEZ ARANGO said GERALD PATRICK HEMMING is not a member of Revolutionary Junta for National Liberation (Junta). HEMMING on 10/19/61, denied making trip to Cuba in 8/61. ANTONIO PEREZ QUESADA, boat captain, and JOSE BOLANO SIFUENTES and JOSE ANTONIO SAN JUAN PEREZ, crew members, said they took HEMMING and six others to Cay Guillermo, Cuba on 8/12/61, and returned to Miami on 8/24/61. They stayed at Cay Guillermo 42 hours and did not encounter Cuban militia or underground. HEMMING's two companions are associates of ELOY GUTIERREZ MENOYO. The other four individuals are associates of Comandante AUGUSTO (last name unknown)." Page 12: 10/20/61, Interview of Antonio Perez Quesada in Miami by SAs Robert James Dwyer and William P. Kelly (dictated 10/23/61): "ANTONIO PEREZ QUESADA advised he was born in the Canary Islands, December 23, 1909, and is a naturalized Cuban citizen, residing 104 S.W. 4th Avenue, Miami. PEREZ advised he is the owner and Captain of the 'Blanco Estella', a thirty-nine and one-half foot sloop with Florida registration #1436, which boat is used by him for commercial fishing...."

124-10326-10174: FBI REPORT: ANTI-FIDEL CASTRO ACTIVITIES

02/14/63, FBI report from Robert James Dwyer, Investigative Period: 11/06/62 - 02/06/63: "INFORMANTS (Continued): Identity:...MM T-5 is ANTONIO PEREZ QUESADA, 224 N.W. 4th Avenue, Miami (by request), Location: Instant report, pages 17, 18, 19"...On 10/03/63, Antonio Perez Quesada was still a FBI informer: https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=172168&search=antonio_perez+quesada#relPageId=3&tab=page :A December 5, 1962 FBI document showed that he was MM T-2 and was contacted by SA Robert J. Dwyer: https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=195457&search=antonio_perez+quesada#relPageId=2&tab=page

104-10172-10127: DISPATCH: AMDENIM-1 PROGRESS REPORT 28 FEBRUARY 1963

03/15/63, Dispatch from COS, JMWAVE to Chief, Special Affairs Staff: Page 2: "3...AMHELM-1, 201-328512, was put on the payroll at AMDENIM-1's suggestion after much deliberation. As a long time target area gun runner he is probably the most experienced 'fisherman' in the business and well worth a nominal retainer each month for the operation - all information he provides and for the reconnaissance purposes he serves. For example he was the first fisherman back into the Banks following the MIG and Kidnapping incidents so that it was possible through him to have a test run in the area without committing a fully qualified agent who would be much more damaging to the Station if caught. He is by no means a fully controlled or trusted agent. He is a tool who is manipulated through AMDENIM-1 by never explaining the true purpose behind any particular request."

124-90107-10001: FBI REPORT

On 3/28/63, dictated 4/4/63, at Miami by SAs William Mayo Drew, Jr., and Edwin L. Sweet: "On March 28, 1963, Special Agents WILLIAM MAYO DREW, JR., and EDWIN L. SWEET lcoated and interviewed ANTONIO PEREZ QUESADA at his residence, 224 Southwest Fourth Avenue, Miami, and obtained a signed statement, written in the Spanish language. A translation reads as follows:...I lived in Caribarien from the time I was 21 years old until the present. I am a fisherman by occupation, and I had to leave my country and come to the United States as a political refugee on January 17, 1961...I know a Cuban refugee whose name is TONY CUESTA. Some days ago, in March of 1963, Mr. CUESTA told me that he was going to need me to pilot a boat and that we would possibly go to Cuba. On March 18, 1963, at the request of Mr. CUESTA, I left as pilot of a boat without a name, about 22 or 23 feet long, which was propelled by two Chrysler motors....and four other Cubans, including Mr. CUESTA, left on the boat with me....As a matter of fact, we did meet a boat called the 'Alisan', about a half mile from Cat Cay....About 60 miles to the south of Orange Key, the 'Alisan' transferred some arms, munitions and explosives to us, and we were to continue to Cuba...At 12:50 A.M., on March 27, 1963, we attacked a Russian cargo ship which was anchored in the port of Caibarien, about three miles from the coast. There were six men on the ship and four of them maintained a constant fire with machine guns, rifles and a .20 mm cannon....I prepared the explosive which was a package about 15 inches by 28 inches, and according to my companions, it weighed about 40 lbs....A cord of paper from an incendiary graphite stick, which was the fuse, was attached and set to explode in five minutes. We quickly withdrew from the side of the ship, and five minutes later, there was indeed a tremendous explosion, which sent pieces of the ship, apparently, flying as high as 50 or 60 feet into the air...."

124-90107-10001: FBI REPORT: CHANGED COMMANDOS L, AKA COMANDOS-L, AKA COMANDOS L-66...ANTONIO PEREZ QUESADA, AKA ANTONICO PEREZ...

04/13/63, FBI Report from Miami to Director: "On April 1, 1963, the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), Miami, Florida, furnished a 'List of Aliens Served Notice of Prevention of Departure or Notice of Prevention of Departure and Amendment to Conditions of Parole on March 30 and 31, 1963.' This list contained the following names of individuals associated with Comandos L:....Antonio Perez Quesada, A12 541 716..."

104-10172-10122: DISPATCH: AMDENIM/1 PROGRESS REPORT 31 MAY 1963

06/28/63, Dispatch from COS, JMWAVE to Chief, Special Affairs Staff: Page 2: ...."4...AMHELM/1, the fisherman guide used by the L-66 for the BAKU raid, was removed from the payroll for failure to provide information on the raiders' plan"...

104-10275-10038: CABLE: FOLLOWING FYI AND RECORDS CONFIRMING TELECONS 22 OCT

10/25/63, Cable from JMWAVE to Director: Sluglines RYBAT TYPIC AMBANG: "1. Foll FYI and records confirming Nauman/Reuteman telecons 22 Oct. Cisneros stated desired delivery at East Washerwoman shoal light at 230800 Oct. Also asked for weapons and indicated AMHELM-1 would be aboard, latter having sent his boat to Great Isaac Key and remained ashore. Was advised would confirm delivery later in day. Foll first telecons Cisneros was advised his plans considered ill advised at this point view hot north coast and fact British, ODOATH and ZRAVOID very active. He said they going despite situation and wanted delivery...."

104-10179-10241: CABLE: RE PARA 2 REF, AMHELM-1 HQS FILE SHOWS HE TERMINATED AS

10/30/63, Cable from Director to JMWAVE (Orig: Seymour Bolten, Unit: SAS/SO/SB: Sluglines: RYBAT TYPIC AMBANG: "Re para 2 Ref, AMHELM-1 HQs file shows he terminated as 'untrustworthy' because he failed to notify WAVE of his participation in unilateral exile op against Cuba. Assume judgement that AMHELM-1 presence may cause AMBANG Group security to rapidly deteriorate based on additional info not available HQs. Advise. SAS Comment: Ref advised local contact is AMHELM-1."

104-10275-10024: CABLE: BASIS FOR FEELING GROUP SECURITY LIKELY DETERIORATE RESULTS PRESENCE FOLLOWS

11/08/63, Cable from JMWAVE to Director: Sluglines RYBAT TYPIC AMBANG: "1. Re Ref A, basis for feeling AMBANG Group security likely deteriorate result AMHELM-1 presence follows. His reason for being in AMBANG Group is to guide their boat at sea in Cuban waters. As demo to be put on their boat at sea en route Cuba he will be aboard and able observe demo maritime supply op and WAVE agent personnel. Recognizing modus operandi of sea loading as CIA and possibly recognizing agents, means he then in possession premium info in local community, i.e., CIA is supporting AMBANG. Prestige of his being involved with only group WAVE area known be receiving CIA support makes it most likely info will soon be well known in community. Face we supplying demo to AMBANG Group locally while other exile raider groups being arrested by ODYOKE authorities makes info even more valuable. 2. See Ref C for detail on AMHELM-1 character."

104-10275-10042: CABLE: CISNEROS ADVISED 15 OCT OBTAINING NEW INFIL POINT THRU LOCAL CONTACT

12/22/63, Cable from JMWAVE to Director: Sluglines RYBAT TYPIC AMBANG: "1. Cisneros advised 15 Oct obtaining new infil point thru local contact. 17 Oct said local contact was AMHELM-1 (328512) cancelled May 63 and preparations nearly complete. 20 Oct AMHELM-1 reportedly departed area on fishing trip. 21 Oct Cisneros failed make scheduled contact. 2. FYI AMHELM-1 terminated by WAVE June 63 as untrustworthy. Basis his presence in AMBANG Group feel their security may rapidly deteriorate. C/S Comment: *Cisneros advised re crew problem."

124-10222-10166: FBI LHM: ATTACK ON SPANISH VESSEL 'SIERRA ARANZAZU' SEPTEMBER 13, 1964 NEUTRALITY MATTERS

09/22/64, Memo from Miami to Director: Page 4: ...."IV. MISCELLANEOUS: Antonio Perez Quesada, 365 Northwest North River Drive, Miami, a Cuban exile who is currently occupied as a fisherman in the Bahamas, and who in the past participated in some attacks on the north coast of Cuba, advised on September 22, 1964, that he had no knowledge concerning the identity of the people who attacked the Spanish vessel. He expressed the opinion that the boats involved would have had to be either very large boats or to have been based at a location near the eastern end of Cuba, since the attack occurred too far from the United States to have been launched from this country"...Antonio Perez Quesada was still a FBI informant in February 1965, returning to his original MM T-2 FBI code name: https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=85599&relPageId=2&search=antonio_perez%20quesada

104-10192-10212: REPORT COVER SHEET: AMSWIRL-1 IN BARR-2158, 26 JULY 1965.

07/29/65, from JMWAVE, Reporting Officer: JMBARR, Reports Officer: John C. Tarbell, Approving Officer: Philip G. Elmard: "Source: AMSWIRL-1 in BARR-2158, 26 July 1965. RI: Please cross reference to 201-757864: Zarraga Martinez, Carlos. 201-316776: Mendez Fernandez, Vicente. 201-328512: Perez Quesada, Antonio"... (faded text)

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Contributors:
Gavin McDonald

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