Serial 2120

April 12, 1979

Honorable Clement J. Zablocki
Chairman
Committee on Foreign Affairs
US House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Mr. Chairman:

I received a copy of your letter of March 30, 1978 [1979], to Deputy Attorney General Benjamin R. Civiletti requesting information and materials concerning the death of Representative Leo J. Ryan and activities relating to the People’s Temple.

A response to your request is being prepared and will consist of those materials agreed upon during a meeting of your staff with Mr. Robert L. Keuch, Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Department of Justice, members of Mr. Keuch’s staff, and FBI representatives on March 29, 1979.

Sincerely yours,
William H. Webster
Director

Note: Attached for recipients are one copy of income letter from Chairman Zablocki and one copy of memorandum in 4/4/79 from Mr. Gow to Mr. Moore detailing results of meeting of Committee staff with Mr. Keuch and staff of SAs [names deleted].

[Editor’s note: Page 2 is a copy of Serial 2138, the March 30 letter from Clement Zablocki, Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.]

[Page 3]

4/4/79

[To:] Mr. Moore
[From:] W.D. Gow
RYMUR

Purpose: To report the results of a meeting at the Department with members of the staff of the Committee on International Relations, US House of Representatives on 3/29/79.

Recommendation: None. For information.

Details: On 3/29/79 ameeting was held in the office of Robert Keuch, Criminal Division, at the request of representatives on the Committee on International Relations, US House of Representatives. Present at the meeting were Mr. Keuch; Departmental Attorneys Art Norton and Al Hantman; committee representatives Ivo Spalatin and Tom Smeeton; and SAs [name deleted], Legal Counsel Division, and [name], Criminal Investigative Division. The purpose of the meeting was to respond to an official committee request for certain information and documents regarding the RYMUR Investigation. The following items were resolved at the meeting:

1. “Death tape.” A 43-minute tape recording of the final hour of Jonestown was made available to the committee by Mr. Keuch in the form of a transcript. Keuch made a commitment to the staff that a copy of the actual tape would be made available by the FBI to the committee. [Editorial note: handwritten notation, “being duplicated by Div. 8”]

2. Internal People’s Temple (PT) memoranda regarding State Department employees Richard McCoy, George [Douglas] Ellice,

[Page 4 of serial; page 2 of memo]

Richard Dwyer, (FNU) [First Name Unknown] [Dennis] Reece, John Blacken, and Frank Tumminia. This request was denied the committee as pertinent to an ongoing investigation.

3. Internal PT memoranda regarding Mark Lane, Joseph Mazor, Charles Garry, and Walter Thain.

These documents were denied the committee for the same reasons as above.

4. Internal PT memoranda or correspondence between Jim Jones and Tim Carter and Terri Buford.

These items were denied the committee for the above reasons.

5. Information pertaining to PT acquisition of cyanide.

This information was denied to the committee on the basis that the origin of the cyanide is currently under investigation and unknown to the FBI at this time.

6. PT code book.

This information was denied to the committee due to the fact that it represented physical evidence of an ongoing criminal investigation.

7. FBI pre-tragedy knowledge of our investigation of the PT. [Handwritten note: “Division 6 will furnish info”]

Mr. Keuch made a commitment that the FBI would furnish this information to the committee which consists of one allegation of kidnapping which had no basis in fact. The identity of the complainant in this matter will be withheld from the committee.

8. FBI assistance in locating appropriate persons for committee contact. [Handwritten note: “Division 6 will furnish info”]

The committee represented to those present at the meeting that the only individuals that they had desired to contact were Stanley Clayton and Odell Rhodes. Mr. Keuch made a commitment to the committee and the FBI that reasonable efforts would be undertaken to contact Clayton and Rhodes and advise them of the committee’s interest in them. Permission of Clayton and Rhodes would be sought to furnish the committee with their locations.

[Page 5 of serial; page 3 of memo]

Memo Gow to Moore
Re: RYMUR

9. The Jonestown Guest Book. [Handwritten notation: “Committee can view only at FBIHQ.”]

Mr. Keuch compromised with members of the committee and asked that the FBI allow committee members to review the Jonestown guest book without being afforded a copy.

10. NBC videotape film footage of the Jonestown incident. Mr. Keuch advised the committee that the only film footage that would be released is that footage which has already been made public. Accordingly, Mr. Keuch requested the FBI to provide the committee with copies of the videotape as outlined above. [Handwritten notation: “SF pending.”]

It is noted that all decisions in this matter were made by Robert Keuch, Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division, after consultation with US Attorney William Hunter, San Francisco, and FBI representatives who were present at the meeting. The items agreed to be released to the committee will be made available by Criminal Investigative Division.

Originally posted on August 7th, 2020.

Last modified on November 20th, 2020.
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