Bernard Leon Barker (Bernard Leon Barker)

Bernard Leon Barker

Watergate Figure. A man who lived much of his life in the shadows, he was one of the five arrested for the June 17, 1972 break-in at Democratic National Committee (DNC) headquarters in Washington. Raised in Havana by his American father and Cuban mother, Barker, who held dual citizenship, came to the United States in his early teens, but returned to attend the University of Havana. He joined the US Army in 1942, serving in Europe before returning to Cuba where he worked with the secret police during the Batista years. Barker came to America when Castro took power, worked for both the FBI and the CIA, was part of the CIA’s Operation 40, which ran the 1961 Bay-of-Pigs invasion, and was reputed to have been, along with some other future Watergate men, in Dealey Plaza on November 22, 1963. He was recruited around 1971 by fellow operative E. Howard Hunt to be part of the “White House Plumbers”, assigned to stop the leak of classified information. The Committee to Reelect the President (CRP), which was paying the group, desired a wiretap to be placed at DNC headquarters; the men were caught and convicted on various charges. Barker served 13 months of a two-and-a-half year prison term, then returned to Miami where he worked as a city building inspector and was a hero within the anti-Castro Cuban community. He remained opposed to the Castro regime, never repented of his activities, and regretted that he did not get to return to a free Cuba. He died of cancer; no proof of his alleged ties to the JFK Assassination was ever offered. Of Watergate he said: “I think it’s time for people to forget the whole damn thing. It was a sad time”. (bio by: Bob Hufford)


  • March, 17, 1917
  • Cuba


  • June, 06, 2009
  • USA


  • Graceland Memorial Park
  • Florida
  • USA

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