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Cryptonym: AMLAW-3

Definition:
Carlos Lechuga Hevia, the diplomat at the Cuban Embassy in Mexico who became Cuba's Ambassador to the United Nations. Had an affair with Cuban embassy secretary Silvia Duran; this affair was used by the CIA by leaning on his wife in an effort to convince Lechuga and his family to defect.
Status:
Documented
Discussion:
Not much is known about the AMLAW network, other than that it focused on Cuban diplomats.
Sources:

180-10108-10017: ANTONIO GUILLERMO ROGRIGUEZ JONES.

4/14/61 report from Secret Service to White House: Carlos Lechuga is the ambassador to the OAS (Organization of American States), with Quintin Pino Machado and Jose Meleon Carrera as his two alternate representatives. Both Pino and Moleon are described as "characters of ill repute, both reported to be carrying firearms, and were to be considered dangerous...photographs of Machado and Meleon were obtained from the FBI...and distributed to all personnel participating in the security arrangements (for JFK and Jackie Kennedy, where JFK would be addressing an OAS meeting)." Also see HSCA Report, Volume III Current Section: Testimony of James J. Rowley, p. 417: Allegedly, "the plan of Ambassador Lechuga was designed to embarrass the United States by having an empty chair on the stage when President Kennedy addressed the gathering". Another concern stated was that Machado would sit in the Ambassador's place.

104-10103-10347: EFFORTS TO SPLIT THE REGIME: MARCH - JUNE 1962 - STUDY OF THE LOCI OF POWER CONCLUDED

At p. 6: "The Direction of Task Force Efforts to Split the Regime: To identify those members of the 26th of July Movement and other "unaligned" government leaders who were for the revolution but against communism. To date, there is reasonably good evidence indicating that the following individuals do not approve of the communist direction of the Cuban revolution and may in fact be conspiring against the regime...Mrs. Carlos Lechuga, wife of Carlos Lechuga Hevia, Cuban Ambassador to the United Nations, is expected to seek asylum and break with her husband and Cuba toward the end of November, 1962."

104-10274-10337: CABLE: AMBANG-1 NOT YET CERTAIN WHEN CAN LEAVE SJAN ON TRIP BUT

10/11/62, cable from San Juan to Director: In mid-October, AMBANG-1 "will then go Mexico to explore defection possibilities with Lechuga as primary target. Agreed Lechuga defection in place is aim." Also see 104-10179-10107: 10/12/62 cable from TFW/SA Alfonso Rodriguez to Mexico City: "Security permitting would brief Shryock (CIA officer Tom Hazlett) outside (embassy) on GYROSE (Cuban actions) relationship AMBANG-1/Manolo Ray, as well (as) terms reference to be used in latter's pending recruitment effort AMLAW-3."

124-90137-10272: No Title

From Oct-Nov 1962: "Oscar Lauderman, known to the Bureau, is the brother of Mrs. Lechuga (note: Gladys Lauderman). CIA has been in contact with Lauderman in this country. The essential purpose of the contacts has been to develop information which CIA might utilize against Lechuga in Mexico. On or about October 10, 1962, Lauderman was in Mexico City under CIA instructions and spent considerable time with his sister and (Lechuga)." Came back with lots of info on subject. Said Carlos "is sticking with Castro even if it means a breakup of his marriage." Lechuga is scheduled to serve as Cuban ambassador to the UN, he has been serving as Cuban ambassador to Mexico. "(CIA officer Al Rodriguez)....feels that the Bureau might find it worthwhile to develop Mrs. Lechuga as a source. This could be done through Lauderman who is currently working in Washington, D.C." 11/5/62, FBI memo.

104-10132-10133: SILVIA T. DURAN, MEXICAN EMPLOYEE OF CUBAN EMBASSY IN MEXICO, CONTACT WITH OSWALD; DURAN'S ARREST; HER AFFAIR WITH CUBAN UN AMBASSADOR

In the fall of 1962 Lechuga asked his wife for a divorce, saying that he wanted to live with Duran. Report in Feb. 1963 was that Lechuga had asked Duran to marry him. Reported on 11/25/63, in cable by Virginia Renshaw to Mexico City.

104-10185-10265: 201 FILE OF PROTECTABLE SOURCE.

11/29/62: Memorandum for the Record by CKS re LITAMIL-9: Mrs. Lechuga was very upset about relationship between Carlos Lechuga and Silvia Duran..."Maricarmen Olibarri, Spanish employee at the Consulate, was with L-9 and Proenza during part of the conversation re the LECHUGA scandal. Olibarri said that she was pretty sure that Silvia Duran had relationship with Rogelio Rodriguez, former Cuban attache in Mexico. Proenza told L-9 that 'they' (she and L-9) should tell Duran that she was not to appear at the Embassy any more but L-9 told Proenza that he did not feel that this was his duty. He said that this was the job of (Ramon) Sinobas. Proenza, at any rate, told L=9 that she would see him at the IMCRC (Institute for Cuban-Mexican Friendship) in the evening. L-9 did not go to the IMCRC to avoid getting involved. Interestingly enough, Silvia Duran was at the airport to see Fernando Revueltas off to Yemen. (COMMENT: It is becoming more and more clear that Duran is nothing but a 'putita'. It will be recalled that AMSTET-1 described her as a 'loose woman' in his opinion....L-9 and I discuss at some length the exploitation of the LECHUGA scandal. He is confident that it can be done without damaging him but would like me to be around when the story breaks."

124-90137-10277: No Title

11/30/62: Information passed from Jack Wallen of CIA to FBI agent Papich (liaison agent to the CIA): Sylvia T. de Duran has been Lechuga's mistress. It is speculated she may visit him in NYC. Married to Horacio Duran a well-known Mexican decorator. (Information then sent on to Nationalities Intelligence Division.)

1993.07.16.10:26:27:150530: COMMENTS ON PROMINENT CUBANS BY TERESA PROENZA PROENZA AND A FORMER CU

"In late December 1962, Carlos Lechuga Hevia...was unhappy in New York as Cuban ambassador to the UN...in spite of being in love with his wife, Lechuga had denounced her to Raul Roa and Oswald Dorticos Torrado, President of Cuba, as being a passive enemy of the revolution. The denunciation was apparently made under pressure by certain members of the Cuban embassy in Mexico, who, in their attempts to persuade Lechuga, had employed Ana Marie Blanco, then First Secretary at the Embassy, and Silvia Duran, a Mexican married woman employed at the Mexican-Cuban Cultural Institute. Lechuga had offered to marry Duran after divorcing his wife...his wife was emphatically refusing to return to Cuba". Reported in 2/19/63, CIA Information Report.

1993.08.04.09:47:00:180005: NOTES AND REQUESTS FOR COPIES OF SPECIFIC CABLES AND DISPATCHES.

1/9/63, Mexico City to Director with copy to TFW: Theresa Proenza convinced Silvia Duran to quit her position as director of the IMCRC (Cuban-Mexican solidarity group).

1993.06.10.09:07:17:530000: INVESTIGATION OF FERNANDO FERNANDEZ'S ALLEGATIONS OF CUBAN ESPIONAGE N

"On September 1, 1963, MM T-1, another government agency which conducts security and intelligence investigations, advised that MDC officials were then in the process of interrogating Fernando Fernandez at the MDC headquarters in Miami and that Fernandez had been beaten up in the interrogation. MM T-1 stated that the MDC had caught Fernandez writing to Carlos Lechuga, a Cuban government official, while in training with the MDC at a camp near New Orleans, Louisiana, and offering to betray the MDC...Laureano Batista Falla (AMPALM-2), leader of the MDC, advised information had been developed indicating Fernando Fernandez attempted to depart the United States for Cuba on August 31, 1963...Fernandez had confessed during interrogation to being a Cuban intelligence agent...during interview by the FBI, Fernandez maintained that his confessions to the MDC were false and that he made them in order to obtain his release...his purpose in desiring to return to Cuba was to reunite with his family in spite of the Castro regime to which he is ideologically opposed. He admitted having written to Carlos Lechuga and said his purpose was to exchange information with the Cuban government for safe return to Cuba."

MFF: Two Tracks on Cuba, see http://www.maryferrell.org/pages/Two_Tracks_on_Cuba.html?search=lechuga AND ATWOOD

In September 1963, following an interview of Castro by journalist Lisa Howard, Kennedy approved secret contacts between U.N. delegate William Atwood and Cuban Ambassador to the U.N. Carlos Lechuga. A preliminary meeting took place, and plans for more substantive talks in a neutral setting such as Mexico were proposed. Concern that such talks not leak out even to the rest of Kennedy's own government contributed to delays in organizing the secret talks.

FBI 62-109060 JFK HQ File, Section 14

11/29/63 (REDACTED - may be Nunez Portunado) claimed that Carlos Lechuga, Cuban Ambassador to the United Nations in New York, is at the head of all Cuban espionage and subversive activity in the United States. He admitted he had nothing on which to base this statement, but stated it is common knowledge and the FBI should investigate Lechuga." Nunez was himself the former Cuban Ambassador to the United Nations during the Batista government: http://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=10490&search=%22cabarga_was+in+close+contact+with%22#relPageId=612&tab=page

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