Juanita Castro was recruited by the CIA in 1961 through her friend Virginia Leitao de Cunha, wife of the Brazilian ambassador in Havana, but refused to conspire in any attempts on the lives of her brothers Fidel and Raul Castro.
According to Juanita's revelations in her book, Fidel y Raúl, mis hermanos. La historia secreta -- Fidel and Raúl, My Brothers. The Secret History -- which hit the book stores Monday, Virginia Leitao called her to a meeting at the Brazilian ambassador's residence in Havana and proposed she collaborate with "some friends who know of your [anti-government] work and want to help you."
The meeting took place shortly after the failed Bay of Pigs invasion in April of 1961, and Juanita would quickly begin operating inside Cuba as agent "Donna." For almost three years she protected in her home several opponents of her brothers' revolution.
The 432-page book was written in collaboration with Mexican journalist María Antonieta Collins and published by Santillana USA.
It was the first time that Juanita has directly confirmed her links to the CIA, although they have been mentioned in public in the past.
Shortly after she went into exile in 1964, The Times-Picayune newspaper in New Orleans published an Associated Press story under the headline "Juanita Castro informed the CIA; Handed over informations during four years in Cuba."
In 1975, renegade CIA agent Phillip Agee branded her as a CIA "propaganda agent'' in his book Inside the Company.
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