Document Type: 
Document Number (FOIA) /ESDN (CREST): 
Release Decision: 
Original Classification: 
Document Page Count: 
Document Creation Date: 
December 22, 2016
Document Release Date: 
July 23, 2010
Sequence Number: 
Case Number: 
Publication Date: 
February 3, 1982
Content Type: 
PDF icon CIA-RDP90-00552R000303520012-7.pdf54.8 KB
Sanitized Copy Approved for Release 2010/07/23: CIA-RDP90-00552R000303520012-7 NEWPORT NEWS DAILY PRESS (VA) 3 February 1982 RICHMOND (UPI) A former Richmond city councilman 'operated a phony research firm beginning in the late 1950s that was spme- times used by the CIA to train spies, The, Rich mond News' Leader reported Tuesday. "I did it as a patriotic citizen." John E. Lawler told the paper. Lawler said he began accepting CIA assign- ments when he retired in 1950 as special agent in charge of the Richmond FBI office. He was on the council from 1956 to 1960. Lawler. 73. said he ran a phony research or- ?ani:atior, dubbed the Old Dominion Research Co. that was a front for 2 CIA training and pay- roll operation: The newspaper said the firm, which Lawler operated between 195E and 2960. fit the patt- ternT of other CIA-backed --An~ui.:a;ions that po ed as foundations to. pay students and olars ab-ci4, to eali-ect inteil:eenee. Lawler agreed to the interriex? after`he do- Hated a large collection of personal papers and documents to Virginia Commonwealth Univer- sity. One folder in the collection includes eppli cations for overseas research grants or letters from Lawler approving research projects in the Middle East and, Europe, the paper said. --- Lawler maintained he never *knew moth about what went on in the research corporation and v.-`:at he did knew he has since forgotten:- - _' "It just vanishes in time" he said- The CIA declined to confirm or deny the News Leader's report An initial inquiry from the paper in Atril brought a letter saying -there was no record" of the undercover organization. But the News-. Leader said a subsequent December acknowledged 'five 'should have said that -a records. search failed to. locate any' overt , records, . _. .~ ! -"Further;-we should have-stated that'the fact pf the existence or non-existence of any_'-..: documents which would reveal a confidential or - covert CIA connection with.or interest in mat- ?ters relating to those set forth in your request is classified::"" By this statment,"*the letter went on to- say, "we are neither confirming nor denying that any.such documents exist" Sanitized Copy Approved for Release 2010/07/23: CIA-RDP90-00552R000303520012-7