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Cryptonym: AMSANTA

Definition:
Joint FBI/CIA program to place willing FPCC members into Cuba to collect intelligence.
Status:
Documented
Discussion:
This was Lou de Santi's operation - probably why it was called AMSANTA. The program was initiated by the FBI as part of its effort targeting the FPCC as a subversive group and involved the CIA in briefing, debriefing and possibly monitoring travel of assets through Mexico City to and from Cuba. The program began in late 1962, had one major success in 1963 and appears to have been abruptly terminated in fall 63.
Sources:

Someone Would Have Talked, by Larry Hancock, p. 113

from the book: This project used FBI informants to develop intelligence on Cuba and the Castro regime. We know little about the overall project but in July 1963, one such asset used his FPCC [Fair Play for Cuba] connections to obtain a visa from the Cuban government and to travel illegally to and from Cuba (apparently from Mexico City on Cubana airlines).

104-10308-10163: AMSANTA PROJECT

July-August 1963: AMSANTA Project: Description: Coverage of Castro Communist regime through use of existing Communist Party and front penetration assets. File was opened in December 1962. Findings: Memo for the Record dated 10 July 1963 by Louis de Santi SAS/Ci/CP. FBI informant Victor Thomas Vicente, Puerto Rican citizen, who penetrated CPs in New York City left NY for Cuba via Mexico as guest of ICAP. Was debriefed by CIA staffer Lou DeSanti upon return to US in July-Aug 1963. Vicente stated he had interviews with Castro and Che Guevara. Vicente penetrated the FPCC, the Casa Cuba, and Jose Marti Club in New York City. Page 127 of IG 1967 report mentions unnamed Puerto Rican who claims he participated in Castro inspired assassination plot in Dallas. Don't know if Vicente could be that individual." Vicente was 201-731222.

104-10506-10028: MEMO: LATIN AMERICA DIVISION TASK FORCE REPORT OF POSSIBLE CUBAN COMPLICITY IN THE JOHN F. KENNEDY ASSASSINATION

"AMSANTA Project 19-6-73/3: Memo for the Record dated 10 July 1963 by Lou de Santi: Concerns FBI informant Victor Vicente, Puerto Rican citizen, who penetrated Communist parties in New York City, left New York for Cuba via Mexico as guest of ICAP (Cuban Peoples Friendship Institute). Was debriefed by CIA staffer Lou de Santi upon his return to the US in July-Aug 63. Vicente stated he had had interviews with Castro and Che Guevara. Vicente penetrated the FPCC, the Casa Cuba, and Jose Marti Club in New York City."

Contributors:
Larry Hancock • Bill Simpich

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