Minnesota man appears in newly declassified JFK assassination files

October 27, 2017 GMT

A man living in Crystal in 1965 was repeatedly named as an FBI informant in the trove of documents related to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy released by the National Archives on Thursday.

In an FBI memorandum dated March 29, 1965, that was sent to the FBI director’s office from the agency’s special agent in charge (SAC) in Minneapolis, James A. Kraker of Crystal is named as a Cuban source of information who was active in an anti-Castro Cuban exile group known as Movimiento Recuperacion Revolucionario, or MRR, prior to its inactivity in the Twin Cities area.

A second memo dated Oct. 14, 1965, noted Kraker was the source of information about an MRR member, Abel Thomas Mesa, who moved to Chicago from Minneapolis.


It is unclear from the documents what additional information Kraker may have provided to the FBI or how he came to be a source on Cuban exile groups. Some researchers have speculated that Cuban exiles, organized crime figures and disgruntled CIA hardliners angry about Kennedy’s failure to depose Cuban President Fidel Castro in the disastrous 1961 Bay of Pigs invasion may have played a role in the assassination.

Kraker still lived in Crystal at the time of his death in 2002. His death certificate indicates he worked a material handling engineer. National cemetery records show he served in the U.S. Navy during World War II, and attained the rank of Lieutenant Commander.

You can read the memos below.

March 29, 1965 memo:

Oct. 14, 1965 memo: