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attorney in Brooklyn what he was doing, and he forewarned the District Director in New York what he was doing.
As a result things started to move. The file was, in fact, produced. The District Director, in order to save face, told the press, “We are giving it to the famous Nazi investigator in this female case, Tony DeVito, and he is going to pursue it from that point on.
I went through the file, upon recovery I went through the file, and I did not see this investigator's memo on file in there. I did see that the file had been somewhat disturbed and rearranged. I did not see that notation in the file ordering that investigation closed out. This has reference to the investigation "memo for file" authorizing him to close that case out 642 years ago. That was gone.
There was a great desire to have me removed from the Ryan case starting from 2 weeks after my assignment to it. I am sorry, let's substitute the female Nazi case in place of Ryan. There was a great desire to have me removed from it, and we certainly didn't get the cooperation from our superiors. That is putting it too light. Periodically, 2 weeks, 3 weeks, 1 month the tune was repeated, “Tony, your subversive caseload is falling behind, we need you back there, when are you going to finish with them?''
Here is a worldwide probe, and they want me to get a case out in 2 and 3 weeks; how silly.
Once Judge Mishler in Brooklyn ruled in the extradition case the documents were hardly cooled off. The decision was hardly off the press and the trial attorney was out sick or burying his brother or something. Incidentally, the trial attorney for an extended period of time during that case was out 90 percent of the time either sick, on vacation, or other. As you know, great pressures were put upon him from other sources and he absented himself I would say for 90 percent of the time.
So that when Judge Mishler ruled in the case, how quickly the District Director called me in and, incidentally, when Judge Mishler ruled on that case, ruled that that party be extradited, I noted the saddest faces in Immigration in my life. The chief of investigation in New York and the District Director. Real sad face, real sad faces.
Anyway, no sooner had Mishler ruled than I was ordered back to subversive.
Now, when you work an extended case of that nature, there is a lot of clean-up to do. You have to return property you borrowed, books, maps, charts, et cetera. I didn't get that sort of an opportunity. In being ordered back to subversive cases, I was told to take the other Nazi case with me. In so doing they assigned me a subversive caseload, and your work is controlled through the priority system; namely, a three by five card form is attached to each opening investigation, and through that form it will govern the time that you are alloted to complete an investigation.
It could be 30 days, 60 days, or 90 days. When they hit me with this caseload of subversives, all of the cases had a priority date on them except the Nazi probe. The Nazi probe did not have no priority, which, in effect, meant you worked that when you get time. The trouble is there is no time, because as you finish these cases you are assigned another one and another one and another one in its place. So, in effect, by assigning me the subversive caseload, it was a way of directing my energies elsewhere.
So we have the female Nazi obstructionism galore, we have this other, second case where we experience obstruction and in a legal way, by the way. This is quite legal.
But I think in another matter we have a different kind of a situation. In January 1973, thereabouts, I was contacted by a social security investigator who told me he was investigating a case in Jersey for his office.
During the course of that investigation, he had run into Nazi allegations which led him to review the file at the Newark immigration office. In so doing, he was puzzled and amazed why the Nazi allegations had not been fully investigated.
During our first initial contact by telephone, I was not able to answer his questions, I told him I would obtain the file and to keep in touch with me.
After several conversations by phone, he visited me in New York. He did something which every decent law enforcement officer should do on his own initiative. He directed an inquiry to the Berlin document center. Lo and behold, the check came back positive; first lieutenant, first SS lieutenant.
So, with this information, he hurried up to New York; we had a long meeting. I commended him on his efforts. He practically presented me with a closed case. I immediately sent the file, together with documents, plus an extensive bit of data to the Newark Immigration Office urging them to open up an investigation.
I didn't trust the Newark office. The Newark office was never to be trusted in my career. I provided the committee with copies of the Washington Monthly, which has quite an interesting story in it dealing with Newark, with Immigration and Newark, and you can see the obvious infiltration of organized crime at the Newark office.
In short, I did not trust it, I waited several weeks then I recalled the file to see if an investigation was, in fact, underway. When I reviewed it, that Berlin document center check was gone, together with a number of other documentation which I did not list. This social security investigator had provided me with quite a sizable packet of documents.
I held onto the file, not satisfied what was going to happen to it. I had lists of Nazis in my possession as a result of the female Nazi publicity, organizations and individuals who were providing me with names of other Nazis. So that when I was returned back to my subversive caseload, a new picture emerged.
They wanted the Nazi lists. They wanted to know what I had done on it, who gave it to me, and so forth and so on. It has been published before and I will confirm it. I felt as if I was returning to an enemy camp.
I didn't get greeted as a hero, but instead as an enemy, believe me. As if they let Tony DeVito loose, and they weren't going to allow him to get loose on any other matter.
Well, one word led to another and I did my best to preserve those Nazi lists. I had no alternative but to go to see my friend, Robert Morse, U.S. attorney in Brooklyn. I told him what was going on at Immigration in New York and that if no one interceded, we can forget about any further Nazis being removed from this country. He got disturbed, dictated a letter in my presence to Deputy Attorney General Sneed. It was a good letter requesting an investigation of the New York office.
He provided copies of that letter to the individuals involved; namely, the chief of investigations in New York and to the District Director in New York, and actually provided me with a copy of it, after he had requested and gotten my approval. He asked if it was all right if we present these people with copies. I said, “Fine, let's get everybody up on board.” So that the ground rules were set and established, and I waited and I waited and waited for something to happen.
I waited for the FBI to look into the matter of the witnesses and my wife being threatened. I expected some sort of a response.
In short, nothing happened, not much, anyway. Having exposed myself, put myself out on a limb, put my career on the line, the time came for me to retire prematurely, and I did just that. So that when I left that case that I sent to Newark, I wrote it out, I remember the date, June 28, 1973, “Attention invited to the attached serious Nazi allegations concerning this individual, urged investigation be undertaken, and so forth and so on.”
I sent the whole file to Newark. Once I retired, the press picked up certain stories. The press media got into the act. Thanks to Ms. Holtzman, she got into the act, and thanks to the chairman, you certainly made a valuable contribution. I congratulate both of you.
Little by little we are assembled here today, still trying to determine what happened with Immigration throughout the years.
Now, these are merely three cases. I am not a genius. I may be handsome, but I am not a genius. These are three cases that came to my attention through natural events. I did not look for these cases and I am telling you what happened to them.
Now, God knows what happened to a number of others. I don't know. But we certainly, or Immigration certainly deserved a thorough investigation throughout the years, and the trouble is it has not been forthcoming. The present GAO study is a sad report, which I will go into, if I may.
Mr. EILBERG. You are referring to the GAO report?
Mr. DEVIto. Yes, sir, I am going to lead right into it at this point. You can feel free to interrupt me at any time for any questions, incidentally.
Now, I just wanted to describe the atmosphere and how these irregularities could have taken place throughout the years. Let me describe the atmosphere.
I joined Immigration in 1951; I came off the U.S. Treasury enforcement agents list. It was a sad day when I accepted that appointment. I should have stayed on the list and demanded an appointment with the Treasury Department but, nevertheless, I hooked up with Immigration.
Throughout my career, I kept hearing stories about this fellow being indicted, that fellow under investigation, this guy landed up in prison, and these are all Immigration officials, by the way. Somebody was always winding up dealing with the law in some way or other, or this fellow got fired for this or that. And that was the theme.
Now, you have heard of Operation Clean Sweep. That is the dandy of them all, prostitution, immigration selling documentation, infiltration of organized crime. You name the irregularity, and it happened in Clean Sweep.
We have a situation here that was coming apart at the seams during the Watergate case. The then Justice Department refused to cooperate with the congressional subcommittee looking into the matter. Finally, the counsel for the panel charged the Justice Department with coverup of corruption in Immigration, here it is right here, I provided the members with copies of it.
Here it is right here.
That case was never resolved satisfactorily. It was kept in midair. There should have been a lot of people going to prison on this one. So we had an open affair during the Watergate era and what did Commissioner Chapman do? He pulled a shrewd move. He rounded up 50 subservient investigators, sent them down to the border to sweep up Operation Clean Sweep.
Now, could you just imagine sending down a load of juniors along the border to investigate where the corruption lay; namely, in the top and middle level, middle management level and sending down all of the juniors to investigate their potential superiors. That is what happened, and Commissioner Chapman got away with it.
He did that, closed it out, and we heard nothing else from Clean Sweep except some squawks subsequently thereafter.
Now, what happened during the Nazi probe when Immigration's lack of activity started to come to the surface? Chapman pulled another deal. He had an investigation unit at the New York office which they called the Internal Investigation Unit, to conduct an investigation, nice, quiet investigation. And they looked into it, and you must recall Immigration was under fire then, not only through members of this committee, but through the press, media, and the public as well.
Having conducted an investigation they found a clean shop, no, nothing wrong with Immigration, they have been pursuing, no obstruction, they have been pursuing Nazis throughout the years. Another in-house investigation.
Then I notice, Mr. Chairman, that you requested the GAO to look into the Immigration picture, and right after you did, another investigation takes place, indeed, this is known as the Carey report. Another in-house job, and another whitewash. I don't know what brother Carey's expertise is, but I assure you it is not on Nazis. In all of these investigations, nobody came to Tony DeVito. I was their main catalyst, wasn't I? Nobody came to me to ask me questions, hey, where did the difficulties lie, what happened, nothing, nobody. So what kind of investigations have we got here?
We have investigations that were conducted for a purpose and nothing else.
Mr. ĒILBERG. Mr. DeVito, I think we better recess to go over and vote and we will be back in just a few minutes.
Mr. DEVITO. Sure.
Mr. DeVito, would you proceed, and to the extent you can, try to summarize as much as you can.
Mr. DEVITO. Mention was made of our three whitewash reports, namely the one that closed out, Operation Clean Sweep, the Carey report, the 1975 Immigration in-house investigation, and there is just one other report I want to mention, which went into the composition of the GAO report itself.
Now, when Robert Morse requested that investigation it took some time to get going. I had retired, feeling that nothing would occur. After I retired I was called by an FBI agent at the New York office. I live in Westbury, Long Island, N.Y., which is quite a distance from New York City proper. I was called by the agent and told he is doing an investigation for the Deputy Attorney General. I said, yes, I knew about it. Finally we are moving. He asked, can I interview you? Fine, I said. When do you want to come out here?
He asked, “Don't you ever come into New York?” There was no great desire for him to get off his butt and come to my house, which is a proper procedure for any law enforcement officer to do. You don't have the individual make an appointment when he comes into New York. He won't move. Well, I was anxious to get this thing going. So I volunteered to come to New York, spent the whole day down there. I also volunteered to bring in witnesses and my wife, those witnesses who were threatened during the Nazi female's case, but he wouldn't have it.
He says, no, no, I haven't got time, some other time we will do that. So I went down there and spent the whole, something like 7 or 8 hours at his office, and needless to say, I gave him an earful which included information about the female lawyer's attorney who was getting data from inside Immigration, and that's a sore issue because we have in this case the CIA working with a reverse twist. When the story broke in the United States on that female Nazi case, Immigration was caught off guard.
The public became aroused. The press had a heyday. How could this "wardress", SS wardress wind up in America? So that at the beginning the public clamoured for action. Then somebody at Immigration apparently called on the CIA saying, look, we are stuck, we need this conviction record in Austria in order to get going. We have not got it, the Austrian Government refuses to relinquish it, and the female refuses to grant us a waiver. In short, the CIA was called upon to obtain Mrs. Ryan's Nazi criminal record, a conviction record in Austria and so they did it.
How they did it, I don't know.
This was not known outside of the Service. This was not known to Robert Morse who processed the denaturalization phase of that case. So it was kept secret. The deportation case got under way after she consented to denaturalization. It was introduced as evidence and nobody knew about it.
Finally, when the foreign witnesses started to come in and tore this case apart and really exposed the female Nazi's background during World War II, defense counsel got a little concerned, I imagine. In short, he was fed the lone possibility to save his client from being removed from the United States; namely, that the CIA had procured her record and, therefore, the fourth amendment