The Mexico City Tapes

Some of the Mexico City tapes relating to the JFK assassination dating to the fall of 1963 have become available. Thirteen of fourteen, numbered 2 through 14 are now in the public domain. The first tape is missing. Having posted here extensively about the Mexico City fiasco, these recordings are a welcome addition and it has become imperative that these be thoroughly re-translated, studied and analyzed, perhaps even matched to the remaining transcripts. This post starts with tape number 2 and more will continue throughout the collection.

The audio file is 1:20:37 long and presents a remarkable insight into Cuban Embassy operations in Mexico City during the crucial months before and after the assassination. For anyone familiar with and the work of Bill Simpich, (State Secret) it offers a feeling of depth and understanding of the documents that have become available. It also matches voices to the people who were under surveillance by the CIA, as they implemented the LIENVOY wiretap operation in Mexico City in conjunction with three corrupt Mexican Presidents who worked for the CIA, where Lee Oswald was supposedly caught on tape making calls to both Cuban and Soviet embassies, during his alleged visit to Mexico City from 27 September to 3 October 1963. Here is a short chronology.

Guillermo Ruíz
Rogelio Rodríguez

The tape reveals the activities of noted Cuban agents working in Mexico City such as Rogelio Rodríguez, Guillermo Ruíz, Luisa Calderón, Francisco Llagostera, el “Mayordomo”, Raúl Aparicio, Herberto Jorrín — who probably had the most colorful cover of all — as doorman and gardener, yet a good amount of the telephone action revolves around him! All of the above are either mentioned prominently or are heard in the recordings.

Of course, the first order of business for any serious researcher would be to identify any references to Sylvia Durán and her supposed interactions with the man who played the Oswald impostor. Indeed, calls come in for her at 7:15, 9:09, and 1:11:20, with the third one asking for her home address as well as that of Raúl Aparicio. The first call at 7:15 extends to the 8:32 mark, and is from an operator calling on behalf of an American speaking perfect English in the background. This short audio clip reproduces the call from Acapulco. English translations below are bracketed:

Cuban man answering: Embjada de Cuba. Operator: Embjada de Cuba? [Cuban Embassy?} Si. [Yes] Operator: De Acapulco llamando a la Señorita Sylvia Duran. [From Acapulco calling for Señorita Sylvia Durán]. Cuban man answering: No ella no se encuentra aqui, que si quiere hablar con otra persona? [No she is not here at the moment, does he want to speak to someone else?] Operator asks: Que ella no se encuentra alli la Señorita Durán? Ya no trabaja ahi ella? [That Señorita Durán is not there? Does she not work there anymore?] Cuban: …no, pero no se encuentra en estos momentos [….no, but she is not here at the moment]. Operator to American: She is not there now, do you want to talk with someone now? [American: She’s not working now, or…? Operator answers: No, today] American: Today she’s not working there. [[Cuban man comments to someone next to him: Están llamando a Sylvia de Veracruz.]] [Someone is calling Sylvia from Veracruz] American: Who are we talking to now ? Operator: Well I think the… American: They just left? Operator: They just left. American: Will she be back later on today? Operator: Let me check, Regresa ahora? [Is she coming back now?] Cuban man: Digame? [Come again?] Operator: Ya no sabe si regresa mas tarde? [Do you not know if she is coming back later?] Cuban man: No, no, es que mire los sábados no se trabaja, no hay oficina. [No, no, look, the thing is that they don’t work on Saturdays, there is no office]. Operator repeats in Spanish, ah, es que los sabados no se trabaja porque no hay oficina. Operator in English: They will be closed today or tomorrow they open at __ OK gracias por la llamada. Gracias, Cuban man: De nada. [Your’e welcome]

The second clip is even more compelling and provocative. Besides the “Americano” calling for her above, the last call that day to Sylvia from an unidentified Spanish-speaking man yields definite proof that Durán was still working there at the time of this recording.

He begins by asking for her address: “Podria decirme por favor, la Señorita Sylvia Durán, qué dirección tendrá? [Could you please tell me, Señorita Sylvia Durán, what is her address?] The Cuban man who answered says: “No yo no la conozco la direccion de ella.” [No, I don’t know her address].

The caller presses on, “Es la señorita que trabaja en el Consulado” [It’s the señorita that works at the Consulate.] Si, si, yo se que es la que trabaja en el consulado pero you no… [Yes, yes, I know it’s the girl that works at the Consulate but I don’t….] Again he presses, No sabe a quien le podría preguntar? [Do you know anyone there you could ask?] No, no, lo ignoro. [No, no, I don’t know]. Then he does a 180 and blurts: Dígame, el Sr. Aparicio, que direccion tiene? [Tell me, Mr. Aparicio what is his address?]

The impact of just these two specially enhanced and selected clips is huge, and begins to clarify dark aspects of the Mexico City scenario from the Cuban point of view. These clips, of course, would date Tape number 2 prior to 22 November 1963. Also, and needless to say, the American’s voice in the first clip is not even close to being that of Lee Oswald. He sounds highly educated, possibly Ivy league. What was the purpose of his call from Acapulco on a Saturday for Sylvia Durán when she was off from work? Page 9 of Durán’s 1978 HSCA secret interview tells us that she left the Consulate two days after the assassination.

At 34:48 a call comes in asking for Jorrín. The woman is told he stepped out for lunch.

At 36:41 Guillermo Ruíz comes to the phone to answer a call from his wife, Nilda, who appears to be annoyed that he has not come home as he is working overtime on a Saturday. Nilda happens to be Antonio Veciana’s sister. A story peddled by the CIA involved Ruíz who, was the subject of a supposed move by Cuba to exfiltrate an agent out of Mexico City via Cubana Airlines on 22 November 1963 that was supposedly involved in the JFK assassination. He returned to Mexico on 29 November.

How we can date Tape number 2.

The website that has posted these tapes assumes tape number 2 is dated Sunday, 1 December 1963. That is wrong. The information stated above with audio clips regarding calls to Sylvia Durán alone dates the recording prior to November 22. On four separate occasions we discern that it is a Saturday, at the 7:15, 9:09, 44:20 and 1:12:13 marks.

Judging by the apparent secretiveness and discreet veil of conversations it can be safely inferred that clandestine business was being conducted there on Saturdays. For example there’s a call that comes in at 1:06:33 where the man who answers informs the caller that it is “un compañero” answering the call, avoiding to give his name. Also, calls appear to be screened when the person answering says yes, the subject is there, but then all of a sudden he or she has just stepped out and to call later. This happens many times.

At 41:19 a call comes in and it is “Secretario Rodríguez” who answers the phone. This is Rogelio who states he was just about to leave but the person insists he wants an urgent meeting and if he can swing by the Embassy. He gets into a taxi and is on his way. Rogelio agrees to wait for him.

At 42:13 Llagostera answers a call from a Srta. Peña asking for Luisa Calderón who is unavailable and asks to call her back in an hour.

At 44:20, one Jaime de León calls asking for payment from Rogelio Rodríguez, whose dossier is linked above.

46:16 Jorrín calls out to unidentified party about “coffee” having arrived. The gist of the conversation suggests that it has nothing to do with the popular Cuban beverage.

Srta. Peña calls again at 51:20 for Luisa, she is told she is still not there, Peña makes comment about Luisa being a “parrandera” and to please have her return her call if she comes back before 5PM

For the third time, at 1:02:46 Srta. Peña calls for Luisa who is still not there.

At 1:104:45 a Dr. Córdova calls for Herberto Jorrín asking if there is any communication for him.

At 1:06:37 Call asking for Jorrín. He offers to speak to Llagoterra but he would rather talk to Rogelio. After checking, he is advised that Rogelio is gone for the day. He wants to know if there’s an urgent message for one “Trejo Oviedo” from Guatemalan news outlet Prensa Libre. The man says he doesn’t know anything about that.

At 1:07:25 a woman calls asking for Guillermo Ruíz. She is told he’s been gone for awhile and hasn’t been seen since lunch time.

Again, at 1:07:33 a call comes in for Jorrín.

One of the funniest exchanges occurs when for a fourth time, Srta. Peña calls in asking for Luisa Calderón at 1:08:24. Peña says she and Luisa were supposed to go to the movies around 4PM. She declined a wedding invitation that Saturday in favor of hanging out with Luisa and was now left high and dry, “without the rope or the goat”.

At 1:09:30 Trejo Oviedo again calls for Jorrín, and finally at 1:09:57 it’s Llagoterra who speaks to Oviedo from Prensa Libre.

At 1:12:13, again we get a timestamp confirming the day is Saturday on a call asking for Rogelio (mañana es Domingo — tomorrow is Sunday)

Mexico City Consul Alfredo Mirabal

1:12:33 (at siete y treinta y cuatro pm 7:34PM) Operator asking for Jorrín call from Veracruz from Sr. Ovilio Samás. Llagostera answers. He wants to speak to Rogelio Rodriguez who is not there at the time. Llagostera informs Samá that Mirabal is present as well as the ambassador. At 1:14:32 Consul Alfredo Mirabal comes to the phone. “Dígame Consul” (Mirabal succeeded Eusebio Azcue and witnessed the belligerent Oswald imposter in an angry rant at the Consulate when he was told he could not get to Cuba as fast as he wanted) They are concerned about Buenaventuera Reyes having arrived. The answer is yes and he is in place “funcionando” — working, like “un volador de a peso” which literally means “a one buck firecracker” identifying with the rapid and fast movements of one or more people when walking. Samá feels disheartened (me han dejado descorazonado), to which Mirabal replies, que va, tu sabes el problema que habia aqui, vés? no way, you know the problem we had here, see?, where Samás says he knows and is not complaining, just commenting… Mirabal then says “si ya el problema era serio antesahora despues de tó eso… puso grave de verdad” — “you know the problem we had here, if it was bad then imagine how it is now”. Samá comments “ese chiquito es de oro”. Mirabal sarcastically asks if Buenaventura no sirve — he’s no good — to which Samá answers he is as good as gold, and one takes affection to the man – uno le coje cariño, es buena gente. Today three Dominican exiles showed up allegedly sent by Rogelio with the intention of traveling to Cuba. Mirabal expresses doubt about the intent and shows concern this is a ruse, “un paquete de ellos” and to be very careful, had this been legitimate, he would have gotten personally involved and called, so just get rid of them, either they are mistaken or are trying to “cojerte de mingo” which means “dummy”. At 1:17:30 Yugoslavian vessel (sounds like “Barre”) has arrived at Veracruz containing “important cargo” to be forwarded to Cuba. If someone in Mexico City wants to send something to Cuba this is the time to coordinate such action.

The September 28 problem

With the information gleaned from this tape recording we can assume that Durán was still working at the Consulate, and was not there on Saturdays because the offices were closed when it appears that spook business was being conducted outside the reach of peering eyes and ears and into late hours. Also, in this recording the assassination was not discussed at all.

What little is left of the September 28 LIENVOY take is in this file. The following portion of the transcript tells us that it is Sylvia Durán who is logged calling on a Saturday about a north American man speaking English, who has been to the Russian Embassy but speaks terrible Russian, so they must continue speaking in English. This transcript is obviously fake. It’s also possible this passage is contained in missing tape number 1.

The real Lee Oswald never set foot in Mexico City in the fall of 1963. Recent discoveries locating the passport he renewed on 24 June 1963, which was quietly suppressed by the FBI, have been located and reported in these posts here: , and .