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Warren Commission Hearings: Vol. X - Page 55« Previous | Next »

(Testimony of Francis L Martello)

Mr. Liebeler.
"When OSWALD stated that meetings of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee had been held on Pine Street, the name of Dr. REISSMAN came to mind. I asked OSWALD if he knew Dr. REISSMAN or if he held meetings at Dr. REISSMAN's house. OSWALD did not give me a direct answer to this question, however I gathered from the expression on his face and what appeared to be an immediate nervous reaction that there was possibly a connection between Dr. REISSMAN and OSWALD; this, however, is purely an assumption on my own part and I have nothing on which to base this. I also asked OSWALD if he knew a Dr. FORREST E. LA VIOLETTE, a professor at Tulane University. I asked him this question because I remembered that LA VIOLETTE allegedly had possession of Fair Play for Cuba literature during the year 1962.
I cannot remember any further details about this nor do I have any information that he is or was connected with the Fair Play for Cuba Committee in New Orleans. OSWALD became very evasive in his answers and would not divulge any information concerning the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, where the group met, or the identities of the members.
"OSWALD was then asked what religion he practiced and he stated he was a Lutheran and also that he was presently unemployed but had worked at William B. Reily Coffee Company, New Orleans, about three months, working on heavy machinery and earned $60 per week. He worked from May to July 17, 1963 at that company. He further stated that he had worked for Jax Brewery approximately 1 1/2 months ago.
"I asked him again about the members of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee in New Orleans and why the information was such a big secret; that if had nothing to hide, he would give me the information. OSWALD said one of the members of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee in New Orleans was named 'John' and that this individual went to Tulane University. He refused to give any more information concerning the Fair Play for Cuba Committee in New Orleans.
"Since he did not appear to be particularly receptive at this time, the interview was concluded and he was returned to the cell block. Prior to entering the cell block, OSWALD was again allowed to use the telephone.
"Several hours later after OSWALD was interviewed by a Special Agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, a white female came to the station and identified herself as Mrs. MURAT, who stated she was a relative of OSWALD and lived on France Street. She stated she wanted to know the charge against OSWALD and I told her, explaining to her the procedure whereby OSWALD could be released. She became very reluctant to become involved in the release of OSWALD as she stated since he was involved with the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, she did not want to get mixed up with it in any way. I spoke to her concerning OSWALD's background and she stated OSWALD had a hard time coming up insofar as his family life was concerned and she felt that this had a direct bearing on his actions and that he had gone to Russia and stayed over there for a few years; he married while in Russia and came back to the United States with his wife. She stated OSWALD did not allow anything but Russian to be spoken in his home. She was asked why he did not allow English to be spoken and she related she had spoken to OSWALD's wife about this and she said this was his desire. She further stated she had asked OSWALD's wife if she liked America and the wife answered 'Yes I do' but said her husband (OSWALD) did not like America. I did not question her any further.
"After Mrs. MURAT left, I decided to further question OSWALD and had him again brought out of the cell to me. I then asked if he had given me all of the needed information about his background and he said he had. I asked him if he lived in Russia and he stated that somebody had told me this. He then admitted he had lived in Russia for 2 1/2 years, going there by 'slow boat to Europe.'I asked him how he got over there and he related he left Fort Worth, Texas, stayed in New Orleans a few days and then took the 'slow boat to Europe.' He took a tour of Europe and wound up in Russia. He lived in Moscow and Minsk, Russia and told me he lived there from October, 1959 to July, 1962. I asked him if his wife was Russian and he said yes. He said her true name was MARINO PROSSA and that it was an abbreviation of her name, MARINO PROSSAKAYA; he said she was an alien M-1. I then asked him if he was a communist and he
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