July 18, 1979 • 1232 • Georgetown-State • 3180

[Editor’s note: This document was released both as a State Department cable as part of its 1981 FOIA release, and as Serial 2250 of the FBI’s RYMUR release. The full text was taken from https://wikileaks.org/plusd/cables/1979GEORGE03180_e.html.]

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GEORGE 03180 181308Z
ACTION L-03
INFO OCT-01 ARA-11 ADS-00 JUSE-00 OCS-06 CA-01 FBIE-00 /022 W
——————085382 181317Z /20

P 181232Z JUL 79
FM AMEMBASSY GEORGETOWN
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 106
LIMITED OFFICIAL USE GORGETOWN 3180
PASS DEPT JUSTICE
FOR OFFICE FOREIGN LITIGATION FOR HERGEN FOR L/ARA – FORTUNE
EO 12065: NA
TAGS: CGEN, CDES, GY
SUBJ: PEOPLE’S TEMPLE LITIGATION
REF: DEPT JUSTICE CABLE JUNE 7

1. DCM [RICHARD] DWYER RECEIVED HERGEN LETTER UPON RETURN FROM TESTIFYING BEFORE SF GRAND JURY AND ANNUAL LEAVE.

2. [ANNIE] MCGOWAN’S LETTERS WERE RECOVERED FROM TIM AND MIKE CARTER AND MIKE PROKES AT PORT KAITUMA BY LOCAL POLICE DURING NIGHT OF NOVEMBER 18-19, AFTER FLIGHT FROM JONESTOWN. EMBASSY NOT AT PRESENT CERTAIN OF NUMBER OF LETTERS INVOLVED. ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER OF POLICE [SKIP] ROBERTS STATES LETTERS ARE IN HIS POSSESSION. CHARGE WILL DISCUSS FURTHER WITH ROBERTS (CURRENTLY LEADING POLICE INVESTIGATION INTO SERIOUS LOCAL DISTURBANCES) ASAP. NO INDICATION THAT LETTERS EVER IN HANDS OF SOVIETS. SHOULD BE RECALLED THAT GEORGETOWN HEADQUARTERS OF PEOPLES’ TEMPLE DELIVERED CASH AND QUITE POSSIBLY OTHER DOCUMENTS TO SOVIET EMBASSY IN GEORGETOWN NIGHT OF NOVEMBER 18. SOVIETS REPORTEDLY RETURNED CASH TO MINISTRY FOREIGN AFFAIRS SEVERAL WEEKS LATER, BUT STATUS

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OF DOCUMENTS, IF ANY, NOT KNOWN. AS FALLBACK POSITION, COULD PANAMANIAN COURTS USE COPIES OF MCGOWN [MCGOWAN] LETTERS CERTIFIED AS TRUE BY APPROPRIATE GOG [GOVERNMENT OF GUYANA]AUTHORITY? SECONDLY, IT SEEMS POSSIBLE THAT PEOPLES’ TEMPLE MAY HAVE HAD BLANK PAGES ON HAND WITH MCGOWAN SIGNATURE. WHETHER ANY SUCH FOUND IN DOCUMENTS IN POSSESSION OF FBI MIGHT BE RELEVANT TO JUSTICE CASE.

3. SECOND BATCH OF USG [U.S. GOVERNMENT] CHECKS WERE TURNED OVER TO EMBASSY ON APRIL 5 AS REPORTED GEORGETOWN 1585. EMBASSY AWAITING INSTRUCTIONS ON DISPOSITION ALL CHECKS FROM DEPARTMENT.

4. TWO PT VESSELS, CUDJOE AND ALBATROSS, REMAIN IN GUYANA. ACCORDING INFORMED SOURCES, STATUS OF CUDJOE FAIRLY CLEAR AS ASSET OF LOCAL PT, BUT THAT OF ALBATROSS NOT YET DETERMINED. TWO REMAINING PT MEMBERS GEORGETOWN, PHILIP BLAKEY AND CHARLES TOUCHETTE, ACCORDING TO ANOTHER SOURCE, HAVE CONTRACT FINANCED BY UNNAMED TRINIDADIAN BUSINESSMAN TO USE ALBATROSS TO HAUL CARGO OF GUYANESE WOOD TO GRENADA. POLICE SOURCE CONFIRMS THAT ALBATROSS REMAINS IN GUYANA AND STATE THAT PERMISSION TO DEPART COUNTRY HAS NOT BEEN GRANTED ALTHOUGH SOURCE PROFESSES IGNORANCE AS TO WHO HAS FORBIDDEN DEPARTURE AND WHY. (ALBATROSS IS BELIEVED TO ALSO BE ENGAGED IN IN-COUNTRY COMMERCE.)

5. THERE ARE REPORTS THAT PT SURVIVORS IN GEORGETOWN WERE PERMITTED TO DRAWDOWN LIMITED AMOUNTS OF FUNDS FROM GUYANA COOPERATIVE BANK FOR SUBSISTENCE, ALTHOUGH EMBASSY HAS NO EVIDENCE OF THIS NOR OF ANY SUBSTANTIAL AMOUNTS OF CASH BROUGHT INTO GUYANA BY PT AFTER NOVEMBER 18. EMBASSY DOES NOT KNOW HOW PT SURVIVORS, IN THEIR SUIT TO BE AWARDED PT ASSETS IN GUYANA, ARE FUNDING LEGAL EXPENSES, BUT SUSPECTS LAWYER ASSUMED CASE ON CONTINGENCY BASIS.

6. WHEREABOUTS OF PT SURVIVORS: PHILIP BLAKEY AND CHARLES

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TOUCHETTE REMAIN IN GEORGETOWN AS INDICATED PARA 4. DEBROAH [DEBORAH] TOUCHETTE, MIKE TOUCHETTE, AND PAUL MCCANN ARE REPORTED BY INFORMED SOURCE TO BE AT ST. ANNE’S GUEST HOUSE, ST. MICHAEL’S BEACH, GRENADA. PAULA ADAMS BELIEVED TO BE IN US, ACCORDING SAME SOURCE, BUT IS SAID TO BE PLANNING VISIT OTHERS IN GRENADA IN NEXT TWO WEEKS.

7. SIR LIONEL LUCKHOO, REPRESENTING INTERESTS OF CALIFORNIA RECEIVER FABIAN, JUST RETURNED TO COUNTRY FROM PANAM GAMES IN PUERTO RICO. CHARGE WILL CONFER WITH LUCKHOO ON STATUS OF CASES LATER THIS WEEK. LUCKHOO DID SAY, HOWEVER, THAT HE DID NOT HAVE TIME TO VISIT CALIFORNIA ON PREVIOUS TRIP TO US, AND THUS DID NOT HAVE OPPORTUNITY CONFER WITH FABIAN. IN MEETING JULY 17 WITH SOLICITOR M. ERIC CLARKE, CHARGE ENQUIRED ABOUT PROGRESS OF CIVIL LITIGATION (CLARKE REPRESENTS BANKS AND GUYANA AIRWAYS). CLARKE STATED THAT GOG CONTINUES ASK POSTPONEMENT OF CASE, BUT WOULD HAZARD NO OPINION AS TO REASON WHY.

8. ACTION REQUESTED: FOR JUSTICE: PLEASE PASS INFO PARA 6 TO FBI SA DON HALE IN SAN FRANCISCO.

DWYER [RICHARD DWYER, DEPUTY CHIEF OF MISSION, AMERICAN EMBASSY, GEORGETOWN]

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Originally posted on October 25th, 2020.

Last modified on July 19th, 2022.
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