U.S. nears end of Bridges case (4-29-41)

The Pittsburgh Press (April 29, 1941)


Witness may be prosecuted on perjury charge

San Francisco, April 29 (UP) –
The government plans to complete today its case for deportation against Harry R. Bridges, and prosecute on charges of perjury a witness who delayed proceedings.

Government Attorney Albert Del Guercio said he had one more witness. He had intended to finish his case last week, but James O’Neil, former publicity man for the Congress of Industrial Organizations, did not appear as a witness.

He was brought to court yesterday, but he was reluctant to testify.

Mr. Del Guercio read a statement O’Neil allegedly made to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It said O’Neil had seen Bridges pasting assessment stamps in a Communist Party book; that “Bridges never told me he was a member of the Communist Party, it was always tacitly assumed such was the case,” and that he [O’Neil] had joined the Communist Party through Dave Craig, former director of a federal writers’ project.

O’Neil denied the statement, and accused the FBI of “more or less” intimidating him, and making him lose his job as a news broadcaster at a Marysville, Cal., radio station because of the Bridges case.

Mr. Del Guercio said he would give the U.S. Attorney’s Office a transcript of O’Neil’s statement “as the basis for perjury charges.”

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