top of page
  • Writer's pictureFred Litwin

Richard Case Nagell Sends Jim Garrison on a Wild-Goose Chase

Updated: Jun 13

For several months in 1967, Assistant District Attorney William Martin, of the New Orleans D.A.'s office, had a series of meetings and exchange of letters with Richard Case Nagell.

Nagell dangled a tape recording of conspirators and William Martin did everything he could to retrieve the tape. In the end, there was no tape. Conspiracy theorists now claim that Nagell was scared off because of Martin's involvement with the CIA.

I have put all the major memos and letters in chronological order, and I have transcribed, to the best of my ability, Nagell's handwritten letters to Martin. I've also annotated the large memos written by Martin to Jim Garrison.

The purpose of this effort is to make sense of what happened between Martin and Nagell and, at the end of this post, to contrast a conspiratorial view of what happened to what I think was really going on.

You may or may not agree with my reasoning, but here are the actual documents.


The Richard Case Nagell story starts with his sister. Here is a letter he wrote her on March 13, 1967:

Richard Case Nagell was visited at the Springfield Medical Center for Federal Prisoners by William Martin, an Assistant District Attorney working for Jim Garrison, on April 10, 1967. Here is Martin's memo: (if you want to skip the memo, I have listed the salient points just below)

Here are some comments on this memo:

  1. Martin visited with Nagell for about four hours over two days. He did not take notes since "the presence of a note pad and a pencil seem to make the subject nervous and reluctant to speak freely."

  2. Right at the start of the interview, Nagell said he would not provide any material or evidence. "He stated he was worried about recent events and was at this point afraid to confide in anyone."

  3. He was visited by his brother-in-law who had tried to "interrogate" him. As a result, "He (the subject) had decided to trust absolutely no one..."

  4. Nagell told Martin that "he had been a Marxist-Leninist for many years and that he had no particular love or loyalty to the United States."

  5. Nagell said that "he had kept account of our progress [the Garrison investigation] as best he could through his limited access to newspapers."

  6. Nagell said that "there had actually been three separate plots to assassinate President Kennedy. The first was a plan to kill President Kennedy by bombing (a concealed bomb in the speaker's platform or the speaker's podium) on the occasion of December of January of 1962 when the President traveled to Miami, Florida to address the group of Cuban prisoners who had taken part in the Bay of Pigs invasion and who had just been released and returned to the States. A second and similar plan to kill the President was to have taken place in June of 1963 when the President traveled to Los Angeles for an important speaking engagement. The subject stated that the first and second plots (above mentioned) had never really become serious and that the plans never did reach more than just the talking stage. The third and final plot, which did in fact end with the assassination of President Kennedy, was an offshoot of the other two plans and was planned and put into effect by the same group of people.

  7. The Cubans who "took an active part in the assassination acted as individuals..."

  8. At the start of his second interview, Nagell asked Martin "what theory Mr. Garrison was working on as regards the assassination of President Kennedy." Martin then proceeded to tell Nagell the theory that the assassination was mean to arouse a new invasion of Cuba. Nagell "followed [Martin's] words with extreme interest..."

  9. Nagell said that "he, as a Marxist-Leninist, had worked "for the other side" and had worked under the specific control of the Soviet Embassy in Mexico City." The Embassy had briefed him on the Miami and Los Angeles plots. "As to the assassination in Dallas the subject stated that his only connection was to function as a watchdog for the Soviet Embassy and to inform them of exactly what was taking place and of what progress was being made on a day to day basis."

  10. Nagell was able to "infiltrate the assassination plot" and he made a "tape recording of four voices in conversation concerning the plot..."

  11. The tape was primarily in Spanish and that one of the four people was "Arcacha" and "another individual whom the subject would only identify as "Q"."

  12. The tape is in safekeeping in a small trunk left with a friend.

  13. "An arrangement was made between the subject and this friend that under no circumstances was this box or trunk or any of its contents to be released to any person whatsoever, other than the subject, unless the friend were to be approached by a person bearing a handwritten letter in the handwriting of the subject, which letter would have to be signed by the subject in a certain secret manner."

  14. If anybody approached this friend "and attempted to obtain the box or any of its contents without first having obtained this letter signed in a secret manner, then, in that case, the friend has instructions to destroy anything and everything that had been left in his safekeeping by the subject."

  15. The name, address and telephone number of the subject's friend "has been turned over to Mr. Garrison for use at his discretion."

  16. Nagell indicated he was scheduled to be sent back to Leavenworth and that privileged communications would be easier and that he could then get the letter to Martin.

  17. Martin then conferred with an attorney who agreed that if Nagell was transferred to Leavenworth, they would have no trouble getting the letter.

Martin's job was to get the letter to get the tape.

Right after Martin's visit, Nagell sent him a letter on April 13, 1967:

Here is the text of the letter:

Dear Mr. Martin,

Yesterday, I was advised by the Director of this institution that I am being recommended for transfer to either the U. S. Correctional Institute, Danbury, Connecticut, the U. S. Penitentiary, Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, or the U. S. Penitentiary at Leavenworth, Kansas, presumably in that order. Such recommendations will be forwarded to the Federal Bureau of Prisons, but, as I mentioned during your visit, final approval will likely rest with the Attorney General's office.

It is my understanding, however, that I shall be sent back to Leavenworth, quickly within the next two to four weeks, to await final disposition of my [ ].

Upon my return to Leavenworth, I think it would be wise to complete the legal arrangements we discussed, without delay; that is, providing they can be [ ] satisfactorily.

I am still anxious to know whether or not Mrs. Frederick is still living in Colorado and, if so, whether she can be [ ] at the address I gave you. .... Being a very important defense witness, potentially at least, I would suggest a maximum effort be instituted to confirm her whereabouts, discreetly of course, lest she get upset at any inquiry.


Richard C. Nagell

William Martin visited Nagell again on April 23, 1967. Here is his memo: (again, the salient points are below)

Here are the main points of the memo:

  1. Martin obtained agreement from the prison for privileged communications with Nagell.

  2. Martin visited with Nagell on April 23, 1967.

  3. Nagell now said that the tape should show "conclusive proof of a plot to kill President Kennedy."

  4. There are four voices on the tape, including Nagell, and he was acting as interpreter only at the meeting.

  5. Names and places on the tape were cover names and "did not literally mean what they said." For instance, the name Raul is on the tape, but Raul is a cover name. "He also stated that there is a reference to San Juan, Puerto Rico on the tape but that this is a cover for name of Mexico City."

  6. The people on the tape did not know they were being taped and he would have been shot if they found out.

  7. At the beginning of the interview, Nagell said the tape recording was made on the 20th or 21st of August 1963. Later on, he said the dates were 26th, 27th, 28th and 29th of September of 1963. Of course, that is when Nagell was in jail in El Paso. "When I asked the subject about this apparent contradiction he stated that the September dates had pertained to something else and that he had not been thinking clearly of my question when he answered me."

  8. Nagell told Martin that his friend would probably give him the tape recording even without an introduction letter.

  9. Nagell said that shortly before the assassination, he had gone to Miami where he learned that two FBI agents were assigned to work with Cuban revolutionaries and that these agents were known as "THE TACOS." While in Miami he had come into possession of a 22-revolver equipped with a silencer and "that he had assumed that this weapon was going to be used in the assassination at close range." Nagell disposed of the weapon "but that he could retrieve it at any time."

  10. Nagell asked if Martin was aware of a man in San Antonio who owned a 6.5mm Mannlicher-Carcano rifle. "The subject stated that this man had known Lee Harvey Oswald and had been seen with him on many occasions."

  11. The interview completed and the next day Martin went to see Mr. Nicholas - who was responsible for arranging the privileged meeting with Nagell. Nicholas went through Nagell's file and found a pink sheet which was supposedly a form from the Secret Service about a threat to the President.

  12. Nagell was just outside and heard the discussion and he told Martin he was upset that he had been friendly with Nicholas. Nagell stalked out of the meeting and told Nicholas to take him back.

  13. Nagell then told the prison doctor that "he would not continue with his plans to have me represent him in any manner and for me to "just forget the whole thing.""

  14. The physician told Martin that Nagell "had earlier suffered severe brain damage in an airplane accident and that he also suffered from acute paranoia. The physician stated that within a few days the subject might have an equally strong and opposite reaction to this one at our last meeting and might be anxious to see me again."

Martin then sent off this short memo to Jim Garrison:

Martin then wrote Nagell a letter:

Martin's letter was rejected by Nagell:

I'm not sure when Garrison sent this note to Martin:

Nagell sent this letter to Martin on May 19. 1967:

The text reads as follows:

Dear Mr. Martin,

I am in the process of preparing a petition for writ of habeas corpus, together with a rather lengthy supporting memorandum. When completed, they will filed in the U. S. District Court, Western District of Missouri, at Kansas City, or, if I am returned to Leavenworth beforehand, they will be filed in the U. S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kansas.

I shall send a copy by registered mail either to you personally, or to District Court Judge Bernard J. Bagert, with whom, I think, you are acquainted.

Necessarily, my petition will be complete; it will reference names of some persons you may wish to subpoena.

The reasons for my contemplated action stems from a belief that my involvement, which, as you perfectly know by now was deeper that I have admitted to your or my sister, is going to be made public eventually, anyway. In this request, I hope only that the authorities furnish adequate safeguards for my children.

I am informed today I shall be returned to Leavenworth on or about June 12, 1967.

Richard C. Nagell

Nagell sent this letter to Martin on May 24, 1967:

The text of the letter reads:

Dear Mr. Martin:

This is to advise that in my opinion I am being denied the lawful right, as a person awaiting outcome of appeal, from adequately preparing a Memorandum In Support of my petition for habeas corpus, and that I do not feel I can submit a proper petition without attaching a lengthy supporting memorandum to it.

Whether or not the administrative policy responsible for this situation is itself in violation of the law, is, of course, a matter for the court to decide. I can only point out that such policy has the effect of abrogating the right aforementioned and my right of privileged communications with the court. In the latter request I'm sure you can understand there are certain aspects of my case which I prefer not to become general knowledge around the institution, at best not yet, but which must seriously be raised to support my petition.

I would ask that you contact Mr. Nicholas, like you did before, and request authorization to visit me under the conditions arranged previously (I promise not to panic). Request that I be allowed to present my hand-written petition and supporting memorandum to you for your perusal and inspection, and that you be permitted to take them with you in order to have them typed up.

If Mr. Nicholas wishes to read them himself, that is alright with me as long as it is done in your presence. In fact, it might be a good idea to have them notarized.

I cannot emphasize enough how pertinent and vital this matter is to all concerned because in these documents I shall have listed facts that can be substantiated by interviews and official records, and, I shall be willing to testify under oath concerning anything cited or alleged therein.

If these arrangements cannot be made to your satisfaction, then I would suggest you ask the proper authorities to initiate court action on my behalf.

In either event, I shall appreciate an early advisement of your intentions, if any, to alleviate my punishment.

Also, I might advise that I have terminated correspondence with my sister because I don't want her to be dragged into this mess inadvertently. I'm certain you will understand why it had to be so.

Richard Nagell

Nagell sent this letter to Martin on May 31, 1967:

The letter reads:

Dear Mr. Martin:

I don't know whether or not you are in receipt of my letters dated May 19 and May 24. I would ask that you inform Mr. Nicholas here and make arrangements to visit me as soon as possible. It is important that I speak to you before my departure for Leavenworth. I can assure you will find a visit at this time of [ ] concern to my case to our mutual benefit.

Richard C. Nagell

Martin wrote back on June 1, 1967:

On June 7, 1967, Nagell gave this letter to William Martin to give to Frederick H. John as a letter of introduction:

Here is the text of the letter:

June 7, 1967

Dear Fred,

This will serve to introduce Mr. William R. Martin, an attorney, who is acting on my behalf. Please have him identify himself. I have advised him that our acquaintance is derived strictly out of friendship and that you know absolutely nothing about my past dealings and activities during the years 1962 - 1963. I have written you at least twice after being sent to Leavenworth, but never received an answer. Is everything O.K.? I hope you will keep confidence in me until I am some day in the position to tell you my side of the story, relative to the offence for which I have now been twice convicted and sentenced to the maximum penalty of ten years.

In the event you did not receive my last letter, and providing you still have possession of, or know the location of, my personal belongings, I would ask that you check them and give to Mr. Martin one of the small recording tapes which is labeled "Houston -- August 23, 1962" or "Houston -- August 27, 1962" or with similar phrases typed on the label. They are in a box (cigar box, I believe) beneath my films on Korea. If any of the tapes are unlabeled, then let him play the first part of this (if it is in Spanish) to ascertain which one is applicable.

Thereafter, I would ask that you immediately dispose of all tape recordings that were in my trunk on September 1963, and also destroy my passport, and all "embarrassing material." (I have also advised Mr. Martin that you do not know the contents of my documentation, photographs, films, tracts, pamphlets or the nature of any belongings you have ever kept for me at my request). Please keep the other things for me, the non-recording things, until I get out of this mess. Thank you.

(Please destroy this letter)

Dick -- Richard Nagell

Martin took the letter and found Mr. John:

Nagell then wrote Martin on June 30, 1967

The letter reads as follows:

Dear Mr. Martin:

I am in receipt of your letter dated June 20. Since the physical evidence referred therein is no longer available, for whatever cause, I see no purpose in continuing with the preparation of my case..

Richard C. Nagell

Martin replied on July 7, 1967

Nagell wrote his sister on July 8, 1967 about the tape:

Nagell replied to Martin on July 13, 1967:

Here is the text of the letter:

Dear Mr. Martin:

I am in receipt of your letter dated July 7. If I interpret your wordage correctly, it appears that you may have misconstrued my reply of June 30, and the reasons behind it. I did not mean to infer by the assessment I gave that I would not continue with the preparation of my case, nor did I mean to foster the impression that there is no additional physical evidence available to substantiate the more essential elements at stake in my case, let alone the fundamental issues involved.

Rather, my assessment pertained strictly to our attorney-client relationship and was based on the assumption that since the particular item of physical evidence was not available, your representation would automatically be terminated (despite the verbiage used in your letter to June 20). In this sense, permit me to remind you that during our last discussion at Springfield you clearly indicated your sole interest in my case was to obtain access to the aforementioned evidence.

Regarding such evidence, I might point out that in my letters dated March 10 and March 13 to my sister, both of which were shown to your associate, I emphasized that time was of the essence in transacting the business discussed therein. And, I feel that if the procedure outlined in my March 13 letter had been followed at the very beginning, the item referred would presently be in your custody ... for I can assure you that it did not disappear in 1964, nor was it the subject of a burglary by the opposition, notwithstanding what you were told (probably in good conscience) by the witness.

Now, there have been two pertinent and recent developments in my case which call for prompt action on my part, and this is the chief reason I am writing at this time!

First off, I have received notification from the Clerk, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, that the appeal composed by court-appointed counsel has been filed and should be heard during the fall session. I fully intend to block such appeal for cause that has been cited previously, namely, Mr. [ ] advisement last October that if my second conviction is reversed without my being remanded for a new trial, I shall probably be committed civilly to a mental institution, notwithstanding the facts of my mental status or the findings by the U.S. Medical Center for Federal Prisoners.

Secondly, I have received a letter from an attorney who claims he has been retained by Arthur Greenstein to aid me. As I am not yet in communication with Mr. Greenstein I've been unable to confirm this, but there exists no reason to doubt the authenticity of the letter.

Hence, in view of this development, I ask that you please forward my memorandum in support of petition for habeas corpus to Mr. Greenstein via postal registry; and also, that you send this correspondence relating to Senator Russell and Kennedy to my sister by registered mail.

I shall, of course, be obliged to pay for the inconvenience and any expenses incurred if you will send the bill to my sister. I believe that you are in possession of both her address and that of Mr. Greenstein.

In closing, let me say that I too regret the overall effort was not productive. Perhaps the situation will change in the near future. If it does, I shall certainly keep in mind what your have stated in the last paragraph of your most recent letter.

Would you be so kind as to acknowledge receipt of this letter.

Thank you,

Richard C. Nagell

Nagell then wrote another letter to Martin on July 16, 1967:

The text of the letter reads:

Dear Mr. Martin:

I am in receipt of a letter dated July 14 from my sister, Mrs. Eleanore G. Gambert, which advises that she has not received the carbon copies of my petition for habeas corpus or its supporting memorandum.

In my opinion this constitutes a flagrant breach of faith on your part as you know very well I would not have given you the original of the latter document unless you had promised to mail the carbon copies to her by registered mail . . . which you did promise at Springfield.

So I am going to tell you, quite frankly, if the aforesaid documents are not released to my sister immediately, I shall take whatever legal steps appear necessary to correct the situation. I am not the fool you probably think I am, and in this respect, I strongly urge that you don't underestimate my intentions if these documents are not given to her.

For your information, my sister can be reached at the Maple Lake Farm, Kenyon, Rhode Island, where she will be until July 29, after which she plans to return to Canada.

Richard C. Nagell

Martin then wrote Nagell's friend Arthur Greenstein:

Martin wrote Nagell on July 25, 1967:

Here is Martin's letter to Nagell's sister, dated July 25, 1967:

Nagell wrote Martin on July 30, 1967:

Here is the text of the letter:

Dear Mr. Martin:

I have received your letter dated July 25, in which you first allude to a lack of good manners on my part and then proceed to ridicule the substance of one of my letters as "presumptuous nonsense."

Regarding the former, permit me to remind you of your promise to mail the carbon-copies of my petition and its supporting memorandum to my sister before you departed Springfield on June 7, and the fact that you failed to do so. As pertains to your reasons -- which are really quite academic -- for the ensuing month-and-a-half delay in mailing these documents, let me remind you of our accord that they would not be typed up since they were not to be filed in court. This, by itself, makes your explanation sound rather empty, to say the least.

Concerning the letter reference, that is, your pious declaration of my "presumptuous nonsense," - if you are indeed referring to the balance of the letter I wrote you on July 16, then I can but say I'm sure you would not have judged the legal steps I contemplated to be either presumptuous or nonsense, had they been initiated. However, if you are referring to the communication sent your associate, also dated July 16, then I would at this time offer an apology. For I have since been apprised of information which not only convinces me there was no valid basis for the conjecture cited therein, but also that you have never acted in an operational capacity with that particular company.

Still, it is unfortunate that you could not actually exercise the restraint to which you alluded in the closing paragraph of your letter, and appreciate that any individual might jump to an erroneous conclusion when he is restricted to a minimum of data and a maximum of suspicion in evaluating a given situation. I say "unfortunate", because had you displayed more tolerance in this matter, especially in view of your own shortcomings, I'm sure I would have eventually cooled off and seen to it that the physical evidence you sought at Los Angeles was delivered to your hands personally, possibly within a period of weeks. I would have done this to show that I too can be trusted to keep my part of a bargain, not that you have done so in all respects.

Finally, in terminating our business and knotty association, I am going to venture that the future will show you people need me much more then I need you; that D.F. and his friends were nothing but peripheral characters, always expendable; who didn't really know the scheme of things, and couldn't tell you anything even if they were around to do so, which they are not; and that while you people may have set sail in the right direction you are now (from what I hear) about 180 degrees off course . . . but then, that is how it was meant to be.

Thanks for nothing,

Richard C. Nagell

Interesting that Nagell says that "D.F. [David Ferrie} and his friends were nothing but peripheral characters, always expendable; who didn't really know the scheme of things ..." The Garrison investigation was "180 degrees off course," and only Nagell could right the ship.

Martin wrote Nagell on August 7, 1967:

Here is a letter from Nagell to Martin dated August 30, 1967:

Here is the text of the letter:

Dear Mr. Martin:

If you recall, in my letter dated July 13, I asked that you send the correspondence related to Senator Russell and Kennedy to my sister. She received all but the original of Senator Russell's letter, to me, dated January 20, and I note by the applicable enclosure to your letter to July 25 that it was not included in the list of documents mailed to her.

Hence, I would again request that you send this particular item to her, at your earliest convenience. Thank you.

In answer to your letter, aforementioned, which I feel warranted a clear reply, first, let me say that if you had informed me that security considerations were partially responsible for the delay in mailing the carbon copies of the drafts of my petition and supporting memorandum, instead of the reason you did cite, such explanation would have been quite acceptable to me.

As for the communication sent your associate (?) which was forwarded through privileged channels (ostensibly, at least) it is of some concern to me that you were not apprised, in any manner, of this. I did not intend for it to be -- nor do I think it should have been - kept from your [ ]

It is of greater concern, however, that you are unaware of to whom I referred. The only cryptic part of my entire reference was the word "company" and I used the term as instructed with the assurance given that you would understand it.

Now, I wonder about what the recipient of that communication, and several others which were forwarded to the same source through the same "privileged" channels, explaining in further detail my relationship to the subject discussed at Springfield and knowing the identify and last known whereabouts of some of the gusanos involved.

I am utterly pissed off at what has, apparently, happened through what can best be called my own stupidity.

Anyway; as a result of the foregoing, and for other, somewhat more practical reasons, I want you to know that I am closely reserving any and all rights of privileged communications that you may consider as having been legally in effect at the time we had our discussion. This, of course, may appear unnecessary and even academic from your standpoint and position. Nonetheless, you have it in writing for whatever purpose, if any, the future may dictate.

Richard C. Nagell

Here is a letter that Martin sent Nagell on September 11, 1967:

On the same date, Martin sent a letter to Richard Popkin:


Discussion of the above documents

I have to feel for William Martin. He did everything he could to get the supposed tape recording of the conspirators. He was walking a tightrope since the slightest comment could set off Nagell. In the end, there was no tape, and no tape has ever shown up.

Conspiracy theorists believe that Martin told Nagell he was a former employee of the CIA. Dick Russell claims that Nagell wrote his sister on June 12, 1967, that "one major cause of the recent setback in my dealing with Mr. Martin stems directly from his advisement that he is a former employee of the Central Intelligence Agency. He could have done no worse by telling me he was an ex-F.B.I. man. Regardless of his reasons for such advisement, I can only say it had the effect of making me extremely cautious and suspicious ... I intend to take whatever steps I deem appropriate to protect my interests in the matter at hand."

I can't tell if this is a real letter that Nagell sent at the time, or something put together at a later date. Russell then says that, according to "Nagell's later correspondence" Martin was "an officer of the CIA assigned in an operational capacity to the Latin American directorate and ... a past associate of Tracy Barnes [and] Desmond Fitzgerald ..."

Indeed, there are two references to the company in Nagell's letters to Martin. In the July 30, 1967 letter, Nagell writes:

"For I have since been apprised of information which not only convince me there were no valid basis for the conjecture cited therein, but also that you have never acted in an operational capacity with that particular company."

And, on August 30, 1967 Nagell writes:

"It is of greater concern, however, that you are unaware of to whom I referred. The only cryptic part of my entire reference was the word "company" and I used the term as instructed with the assurance given that you would understand it."

Nagell was definitely referring to the CIA. Here is an excerpt from a letter he sent to his sister dated June 12, 1967:

Note that Martin was the one who told Nagell that he had a CIA connection. And note that Nagell's correspondence with Martin continued well after he knew of the connection.

Conspiracy theorist James DiEugenio can't quite be sure if Martin is to blame for the failure to retrieve the supposed tape. He writes in Destiny Betrayed: (page 183)

"Garrison arranged to have one of the many volunteers that had flocked to his office interview Nagell. This was a lawyer named William Martin. This turned out to be one of the many errors Garrison made. For it later turned out that Martin was suspected of being one of several CIA plants in Garrison's office. And his practice was located at Shaw's International Trade Mart. Neither Nagell nor Garrison had suspicions about the man at the time of Martin's first interview with Nagell."

He then writes: (page 184)

"Due to the handling of certain other documents between the two, and their future filing, by July of 1967, Nagell became quite estranged from Martin, and terminated any further discussions with him."

So, what was really going on?

Richard Case Nagell wanted help on his appeal. He realized that Garrison could possibly help. But the only way to get that help was to entice them with something related to their case. It's interesting that Nagell was not only following Garrison's case but that he wanted Martin to tell him about their theories. That way he could make everything fit.

Martin did help Nagell. He forwarded documents and he had Nagell's writ of habeas corpus typed up. You can see some of this document here. Once Martin realized the tape was not going to materialize there was no further need to help Nagell. And Nagell knew he had nothing else to keep Martin helping him. Even so, Nagell kept on writing.

Many prisoners contacted Jim Garrison. Edward Whalen and Edward Girnus were two other prisoners who claimed they had important information. James Alcock, Garrison's second-in-command, went down to interview Whalen. After he returned to New Orleans, Whalen wrote him a letter saying, well, come back because I have more information. Alcock did not go back, although Garrison sent the Whalen 'lead' to the HSCA.

When Nagell died in 1995, the ARRB searched his belongings. There was no tape, and no documents relevant to the JFK assassination.

But no matter. The mythical tape lives on.


The Martin-Nagell correspondence continued in 1968:

Martin replied:

William Martin developed a fondness for Richard Case Nagell.

Richard Case Nagell Blog Posts

The Importance of Richard Case Nagell to Some Conspiracy Theorists

Jim Garrison and a few conspiracy theorists think Nagell is a very important witness. But is he really?

Genesis of the Richard Case Nagell story

David Kroman met Richard Case Nagell at the Springfield Medical Center for Federal Prisoners. Stephen Jaffe, a Garrison volunteer, wrote a memo, relating Nagell's story through the eyes and ears of David Kroman.

Nagell was convicted of armed robbery and was sentenced to ten years, but his conviction was overturned because of startling new evidence.

Richard Case Nagell and the JFK Assassination

There is no credible evidence that Nagell had any foreknowledge of either Lee Harvey Oswald or the JFK assassination.

Nagell claims he met Oswald in Japan, Texas, Mexico City, and New Orleans. There is no credible evidence that he ever met Oswald.

Nagell went to Cuba and met with Fidel Castro and even played ping-pong with the man.

Insane Conspiracy Theories about Richard Case Nagell

Richard Case Nagell said that he knew the two Oswalds - Lee Harvey and Leon. Some conspiracy theorists believe this madness.

Combine one part crazy and one part ridiculous and what do you come up with? An early attempt at a unified conspiracy theory of the JFK assassination.

Two Smoking Guns of the Richard Case Nagell Story

Nagell sent conspiracy theorist Dick Russell one page of a military intelligence file which seemed to indicate that he was monitoring Oswald and his wife on behalf of the CIA. But does the whole document really show that?

Did Richard Case Nagell had an Oswald Military ID in his possession when he was arrested in September 1963?

Richard Case Nagell and Jim Garrison

Richard Case Nagell believes that he wasn't called to testify at Clay Shaw's trial because his testimony would have blown up Jim Garrison's case.

At a conference in September 1968, Garrison and his investigators discuss his face-to-face meeting with Nagell in New York City.

William Martin, an Assistant District Attorney working for Jim Garrison, tried to retrieve a tape that Nagell said contained the voices of three JFK assassination conspirators.

Richard Popkin, author of "The Second Oswald," writes Jim Garrison about Richard Case Nagell. Garrison staffer Tom Bethell thought the Nagell lead was useless.

Richard Case Nagell's Mental Health

Nagell won a full disability pension in 1982 and the 60+ page court case provides complete details on his mental problems.

Richard Case Nagell told a psychiatrist why he shot up the bank in El Paso in 1963.

The FBI spoke to Nagell's ex-wife, his mother, his sister, and one of his friends. They all agreed that Nagell had significant mental health problems.

Nagell visited the American consulates in Zurich and Barcelona in 1969. He was a deeply disturbed man.

Richard Case Nagell's Evidence

None of the so-called evidence that Nagell promised would materialize on his death has shown up. Did this evidence ever exist?


Recent Posts

See All


Mark O'Blazney
Mark O'Blazney

amazing stuff. just......... wow

Post: Blog2_Post
bottom of page