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17091 SANW Washington DC Phone 295-6200
DO TO PERSONAL ARRANGEMENT FOR CHILD AND OTHERS MATTERS
REINALDO PANIAGUA DIEZ GONZALO DIAGO BETANCOURT
(The above-referred to document was marked "Langston exhibit 16” and received in evidence.)
By Mr. TAYLER: Q. Did there come a time on the 29th when the committee received a further cablegram from Mrs. Powell's attorneys ?
A. Yes, sir; a message was received from her attorneys dated December 29, 1966, the time, 11:17 a.m., addressed to C. William Tayler, counsel, House Administration Committee, House of Representatives, Washington, D.C.
Due to personal arrangement for child and other matters, impossible to appear at hearing before January 5. She does not want to bring child to controversion atmosphere, stop, please confirm tickets for Mrs. Powell alone on fourth or fifth as desired.
It is signed Reinaldo Paniagua Diez and Gonzalo Diago Betancourt, attorneys for Mrs. Adam C. Powell.
By Mr. TAYLER: Q. You read the word “controversion” in that cablegram. Is that the way it is spelled in the cablegram?
A. Yes, sir; that is the spelling of the word in the cablegram.
Mr. Hays. I would interject here that the word is probably meant to be “controversial.”
By Mr. TAYLER: Q. Did there come a time on the 29th of December when you prepared and sent a cablegram to Mrs. Powell's attorneys in reply to the one you just read?
A. Yes, sir. There was another message that went out on December 29 at 12:59 p.m. It is addressed to the two attorneys we have been mentioning here. The message reads:
This committee has given Mrs. Powell ample and final notice of its interest in her appearance. She remains under subpoena. Mrs. Powell is expected to appear at the committee hearing scheduled for 10:00 a.m. December 30, 1966, Room 2255 of the Rayburn Building, Washington, D.C. Airline reservation, round trip, is available to her at Eastern Airlines Reservation Desk, San Juan, for Pan Am flight 216 departing San Juan 4:30 p.m., December 29, and arriving Friendship Airport, Baltimore, at 7:00 p.m. Return trip scheduled to depart Dulles Airport, December 30 at 4:30 p.m. on Pan Am flight 283.
It is signed “C. William Tayler, counsel, Committee on House Administration."
Mr. TAYLER. Will you mark that "No. 17”?
(The above-referred to document was marked "Longston Exhibit 17” and received in evidence.)
Mr. TAYLER. The previous cablegram from Mrs. Powell's attorney is No. 16.
By Mr. TAYLER: Q. Mr. Langston, did you receive a further telegram from Mrs. Powell's attorneys on December 29?
A. Yes, sir. Another cablegram was received from Mrs. Powell's attorneys on December 29 at 1:26 p.m.
Q. Will you read that?
A. It is addressed to C. William Tayler, counsel, House Administration Commitee, House of Representatives, Washington, D.C.:
It is physically impossible to fly today for reasons explained in prior telegram, stop. Arrangements cannot be made with so short notice. Please satisfy as to Mrs. Powell's request to appear on or after the 5th of January.
It is signed “Reinaldo Paniagua Diez and Gonzalo Diago Betancourt, attorneys for Mrs. Adam C. Powell.”
Q. Does that complete your presentation of the file of communications exchanged between the committee and Mrs. Powell or her attorneys?
A. Yes, sir; that is everything in the way of communications.
C WILLIAM TAYLOR COUNSEL HOUSE ADMINISTRATION COMMITTEE HOUSE OF
1709 / St. NW. Washington DC Phone 298-6200
1709 / SE, NW Washington D.C. Phone 296-6200
IT IS PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE TO FLY TODAY FOR REASONS EXPLAINED IN
REINALDO PANIAGUA DIEZ GONZALO DIAGO BETANCOURT ATTORNEYS FOR
(The above-referred-to document was marked "Langston Exhibit 18” and received in evidence.)
The WITNESS. Mr. Counsel, may I amplify my statement by saying that it does complete the communications, although there is one further item that you may wish to have at this time and that is a confirmation from Eastern Airlines that the reservation was canceled and the ticket was not picked up by the time the flight that we had scheduled for Mrs. Powell departed San Juan.
By Mr. TAYLER: Q. That is the flight that was scheduled to leave on the afternoon of the 29th?
A. That is right.
The WITNESS. I was unable to find out. It was a telephonic cancellation.
Mr. DEVINE. By anyone from our committee?
By Mr. TAYLER: Q. Now, Mr. Langston, I am going to show you a copy of a letter from David C. Acheson, special assistant to the Secretary of the Treasury, addressed to Mr. Burleson, chairman, Committee on House Administration, dated October 19, 1966, with an attached report of a Secret Service interview of Mrs. Powell on October 5, 1966, in Puerto Rico. I ask you if that is a copy of the report that you have in your files here.
A. Yes, sir; it is. This is a copy of the original report that we have. Q. Are you familiar with the contents of that report, Mr. Langston? A. Yes, sir.
Q. Is that a report of an interview of Mrs. Powell by Secret Service agents relative to her salary checks?
A. Yes, sir; it is.
Q. And the endorsements that appear on the checks which are already in the record of these hearings?
A. Yes, sir; that is correct.
Q. I direct your attention to page 2 of the report. Will you read the first two paragraphs only, please?
On the morning of October 5, 1966, a third trip was made to Cerro Gordo where Mrs. Powell was interviewed in her home by SAIC Gittens and SA Gonzalez.
When advised of the nature of our business and shown photostatic copies of the checks in question, Mrs. Powell said that the checks did not bear her genuine endorsement, that she had not authorized the endorsements, that to the best of her knowledge she at no time had given her husband, Representative Adam Clayton Powell, expressed or implied authority to negotiate the checks.
Concerning the question of whether she had received funds and/or benefits from those checks, Mrs. Powell said that she really did not know. She said that she has neither seen nor heard from her husband in more than a year, that the question of support is now being handled by her attorney, Mr. Gonzalo Diago Betancourt, First National City Bank Building, Suite 702, Hato Rey, Puerto Rico. She further explained that Mr. Diago is her cousin.
That is the end of the second paragraph.
Reference is made to your letter of September 26 and to my reply of September 29, regarding the endorsement on various Treasury checks issued to Y. Marjorie Flores.
Attached, for your confidential information, is a copy of the investigation report of Charles L. Gittens, Special Agent in Charge, U. S. Secret Service, San Juan, giving the results of his inquiries with the payee and her attorney in Puerto Rico during the period October 3 to 13, 1966.
If we can further assist you, we shall be glad to do so.
David C. Acheson
Tomas Buang contesent. 2051
Chairman, Committee on House Administration