862.20233/1–545: Telegram

The Ambassador in Uruguay (Dawson) to the Secretary of State

11. Uruguayan police arrested early this morning and are holding dozen or more persons suspected of being implicated in Nazi espionage and propaganda activities. Arrests were made as result of confession of one Frova69 who was questioned on basis of mail intercepted from Buenos Aires. Both Naval and Legal Attachés had advance information and have cabled names of all persons implicated to Navy Department and FBI.70 Among those detained are two Brazilian Integralistas and also Romeo Maeso of Uruguayan Foreign Office and Juan Alberto Bove Trabal, concerning both of whom Department’s files contain information.

Chief of Police has given story to press and it is being played up sensationally with revolutionary implications which appear unwarranted. On other hand there is reason to believe that several of those arrested have been working with Nazi propaganda and intelligence services in Argentina.71

Repeated to Rio and Buenos Aires.

  1. Antonio Domingo Frova Mazzoni, Italian-born naturalized Uruguayan, employed in the Ministry of Public Works.
  2. Federal Bureau of Investigation.
  3. According to telegram 13, January 8, 1945, 4 p.m., from Montevideo, all except six, including the Brazilians, were released.