Was Sergio Arcacha Smith Involved in the JFK Assassination?
Updated: Oct 25, 2021
Sergio Arcacha Smith, an anti-Castro Cuban, was sent to New Orleans from Miami as a delegate to the Cuban Democratic Revolutionary Front. In the 1950s, he had been a Consul for Cuba in Madrid, Rome, Mexico City and Bombay (now Mumbai).
New Orleans States-Item, December 22, 1960
Arcacha then started the Crusade to Free Cuba (New Orleans States-Item of December 1, 1961).
For the last three months in 1961, he had an office at 544 Camp Street in New Orleans. Here is an excerpt from the statement of Sam Newman (who owned the building) to Garrison on January 18, 1967:
Arcacha Smith left New Orleans in 1962 after being suspected of stealing money from the organization. He moved to Miami, and then Houston (where he sold advertising), and ultimately settled in Dallas, where he was selling air conditioners.
He was not in Dallas then JFK was assassinated.
Here is a letter form his employer in Dallas.
However, Arcacha Smith was a person of interest to Jim Garrison who suspected a connection with Lee Harvey Oswald. After all, a few of Oswald's pro-Castro pamphlets (from the Fair Play for Cuba Committee) handed out in August 1963, bore the same address, 544 Camp Street, that Arcacha's organization had back in 1962. And Garrison had two witnesses, Jack Martin and David Lewis, who had seen Oswald and Arcacha together in 1963 at Mancuso's restaurant at the corner of the building.
There were two problems with that theory - first, Martin and Lewis were crackpots, and second, as we have shown above, Arcacha had left New Orleans and was living elsewhere.
This hasn't stopped conspiracy theorists from believing that Arcacha was involved in the assassination. James DiEugenio, in an essay entitled "Rose Cheramie: How She Predicted the JFK Assassination," makes the case that "Arcacha's involvement [in the assassination] was likely operational" (page 237 in The Assassinations, edited by James DiEugenio and Lisa Pease).
Here is his evidence (page 235):
My head hurts from reading that paragraph - all sourced from other conspiracy books - but, as DiEugenio says, "If this is true, it provides a nexus point between Dallas and New Orleans, not just for the Cheramie story, but also for the assassination itself."
What is the evidence that "Smith got into the lucrative drug and prostitution business that ran interstate from Miami to Dallas"?
But, given his involvement in drugs and prostitution, it would have been "natural" for Smith to hook up with Jack Ruby, right?
As they in the television ads, but wait, there's more!
Emilio Santana was a burglar in New Orleans who was of interest to Garrison because he was friends with Miguel Torres, his partner in crime. Torres was of interest because he once had dinner with Sergio Arcacha Smith - and well, propinquity comes into play.
Here is an excerpt of Garrison's first memo on propinquity dated February 10, 1967.
Garrison questioned Santana who told him he was a CIA agent.
But, as DiEugenio tells the story, Santana moved to Miami. And in Miami lived Bernardo de Torres, who helped Garrison in the initial stages of his investigation. DiEugenio believes de Torres was an infiltrator, and that he "has pictures of Dealey Plaza in a safe deposit box. These pictures were taken during the assassination of JFK." DiEugenio says that quote comes from an HSCA report, but no further details are provided, and I cannot find that report.
DiEugenio has two more pieces of incriminating evidence against Arcacha Smith.
The first comes from Richard Case Nagell, who was a patient at the Medical Center for Federal Prisoners in Springfield Missouri. He told a Garrison investigator that he had a secret tape. Here is an excerpt of William Martin's report to Jim Garrison (memo dated April 18, 1967):
That tape has never been found. But to DiEugenio, the fact that Nagell said Arcacha was part of the plot is enough to incriminate him. DiEugenio also believes that "Q" refers to Carlos Quiroga, another anti-Castro Cuban living in New Orleans.
The last piece of incriminating evidence comes from an HSCA interview of State of Louisiana police officer Francis Fruge. Here is an excerpt from his interview on April 7, 1978:
When I first read this, I thought well, clearly Fruge has no direct knowledge of any of this, he's just repeating a rumor. But, to DiEugenio this is important information (page 237):
So, there you have it - the sewer map, the never-ever-seen De Torres photos, and the never-before-heard Nagell tape, are all the evidence you need to incriminate Sergio Arcacha Smith in the assassination of JFK.
But wait, there's more.
Why are the maps of the Dallas sewer system important? It's because DiEugenio wants to support the Garrison theory that there was a shot from the sewer on Elm Street.