1981 - 1983 

by Virginia McCullough © 4/5/10

There are two different versions told of what transpired at the Cabazon Reservation between the years of 1981 and 1983.   

One story involved a joint venture between Wackenhut, Cabazon Reservation and a company called Inslaw.  Inslaw had a program called PROMIS (Prosecutor Management Information System).  This PROMIS system was allegedly modified to include a Trojan horse back door.  Soon the PROMIS system was claimed to be "Cadillac" of software able to search out anything anywhere used by case management systems, bankers, troops in the field and to destroy incoming missiles. These claims and others were made by Michael J. Riconosciuto who is currently in prison in Terminal Island, California. 

The most recent major event involving what happened at the Cabazon Reservation was the arrest of James G. "Jimmy" Hughes as the "hit man" in the triple execution of Fred Alvarez, Ralph Boger, and Patricia Castro in July 1, 1981.  Jimmy Hughes was arrested September 26, 2010 and held without bail until July 1, 2010 when all charges were dismissed on Prosecutor Michael Murphy's motion to dismiss. 

There are four documents that might or might not link Jimmy Hughes to Michael James Riconosciuto in the years 1981 through 1983 at the Cabazon Reservation. 

The bodies in the triple execution were found July 1, 1981 and on September 25, 1981, and less than two months later, Jimmy Hughes found himself at a fingerprint facility at the Riverside County Sheriff's office.   The first document is the fingerprint card that was submitted to Governor Charlie Crist's office in the fall of September 2009 when California sought extradition for Jimmy Hughes.   The alleged signature of James G. Hughes Jr. is noted on the card:

Jimmy Hughes

James (Jimmy) HughesThe second document is a purported contract. On the 27th day of September 1981 an eight page "Service Contract" with the alleged signatures of Michael Riconosciuto with witnesses called James G. Hughes Jr., Dr. John Philip Nichols and Charles A. Johnson. The two pages detailing the agreements state as follows: 

      Michael Riconosciuto, personally and individually, is retaining Dr. John Philip Nichols,  personally and confidentially, to perform for him services of a very secretive and  confidential nature in the following areas: 

      1) Investigate and develop a plan to help Michael Riconosciuto eliminate personal  pressures on his life which have limited his ability to function as a research scientist because  of problems which have occurred during his post-university past.  In addition, Dr. Nichols  will help Michael Riconosciuto gain access to the type of people contacts with whom he can  carry out his scientific work.  The plan of action is for Dr. Nichols to select a committee to   to evaluate the work and life history of Mr. Riconosciuto, including judicial events to date in his life by reviewing the contributions made by him to our free democratic society to date  and the potential contributions of his scientific know-how. 

      2) The second area in which Dr. Nichols will be of assistance is through helping Michael Riconosciuto resolve interpersonal relationships with pears, family etc.  Michael  Riconosciuto understands and accepts that he has to give materials and provide finances to Dr. Nichols to help resolve these problems.  Required are examples of Mr. Riconosciuto's  technical ability around the age of twenty-four (24) prior to involvement with the Federal  Court system, transcripts of the specified trial and a file of clippings from that period, fifteen  (15) current letters of reference from people acquainted with his technical ability and who  can testify to his stability.  In connection with the area of stability, Dr. Nichols has arranged for two (2) Board certified psychiatrists who are well known for working with scientists and certification/clearance problems to work with Michael Riconosciuto.  Since the nature of the  service to be rendered in secretive, Mr. Riconosciuto's file and information therein will be  held as a medical record to avoid any disclosure except to authorized parties, authorized by  the signatories to this Contract.  In the event that there is a question related to the services rendered to cooperation of the client, the parties to this Contract shall use the services of the  American Arbitration Association for arbitration of the dispute.  The representative for Michael Riconosciuto shall be Paul Morasca, Discovery Technology Inc., 827 Pacific  Avenue, Suite 174, San Francisco, California 94133.  The representative for Dr. John Philip  Nichols shall be Peter Zokosky (81980 Tournament Way, Indio, California 92201).  The third  administrator either will be chosen by Robert Frye of Miami, Florida or by the above  mentioned two arbitrators by mutual agreement. 

      Following is the related fee schedule for the services of Dr. John Philip Nichols.  On-going  travel and other expenses will be reimbursed against billing.  These expenses include but are not limited to trips to Kansas; Seattle, Washington; Dover, New Jersey (2 trips); Rock  Island, Illinois (2 trips); Miami, Florida (2 trips); Washington, D.C. (2 trips).  Mr. Riconosciuto will need to accompany Dr. Nichols to Dover, New Jersey, Washington, D.C.  and Rock Island, Illinois. 

The remainder of the pages detail the monetary expenditures of both Michael Riconsciuto and Marshall Riconosciuto to Dr. John Philip Nichols.  The amount of monies exchanging hands was $146,558.10 with an ending date of May 12, 1982. 
 The third document is a letter dated April 13, 1982 addressed to Mr. Jim Hughes at the Cabazon Security Corp., 83-180 Requa Ave., #9, Indio, CA 92201.  This letter stated: 

      Dear Jim: 

      Michael Riconosciuto and his wife Phyllis want to retain your professional services along with those of Mr. Steven Bates for the period of April 14, 15 and 16, 1982, to fly to Fresno,
      California to help Michael Riconosciuto to get his affairs in order and to protect Michael
during this period until he goes into protective custody with the F.B.I. at the Oakland office. 

      Michael Riconosciuto is to meet with special agent Robert Barnes.  After Mr. Barnes has assumed the protection for Mr. Riconosciuto you and Mr. Bares can return to Palm Springs. 

      The agreed upon flat fee for rendering this service shall be $1,300.00 including air fare, hotel  costs and meals.  Incidentals will be paid in addition to the $1,300.00 flat fee. 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Sincerely, (allegedly by)  

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Phyllis Riconosciuto 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Agreed and accepted by (allegedly by) 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Jimmy Hughes 

The fourth and final document is a letter dated April 4, 1983 on Cabazon Arms, a CSC/WSI Joint Venture, letterhead addressed to: Army Discharge Review Board.  It states as follows:


Another story of how the "hookup with Wackenhut" came about is supplied by John Philip Nichols on Pages 76 and 77 of Return of the Buffalo by Ambrose I. Lane Sr.   Nichols said that because of "the uncertainty of adequate income to meet the increasing expenses of the Tribe, he was pushed to concentrate of seeking new business opportunities."           

When I was told to go out and look for new business, that's when I did, Wackenhut -- I was very proud of this and the way that came about -- Mr. Wackenhut's mother was a friend of a guy named Charles Emmert, and Emmert was a friend of Mike Riconosciuto's father Marshal Riconosciuito. He was also a friend of Beryl Barber and Beryl Barber had repeatedly developed a lot of the hardware for the AWAC's airplane. This Charles Emmert was the head of the group calling itself something like "We Won't Pay Income Tax."They refused to pay income tax because of wars and all that stuff, and he [Emmert] wouldn't pay it. So of course the federal government was really hot on his tail. But he was also a conservative.           

Apparently Emmert was also a friend of a fellow named Pat Moriarty who owned Red Devil Fireworks Company. Moriarty, allegedly a former CIA agent who had worked overseas and Northern Japan, was an acquaintance of Robert Meskunas who knew me. Meskunas supposedly told some of them I as a social worker who often successfully treated people with severe mental and emotional problems, citing for example my work in Kentucky and Michigan. Apparently they had been discussing Mike Riconosciuto.

So what happened, Charles Emmert called me and said, "Look, I have a problem. We have a genius named Michael Riconosciuto." He said Michael had shot down an RCA satellite in Mozambique where he had gone when he had gotten mad at RCA. Now Mike was hanging around the Stanford Research /Institute and he knew all the scientists there. Mike had lived with Janis Joplin in the past and it was stated he was a cook for the Hell's Angels for making amphetamines. I said, "He sounds pretty sick to me."

Emmert felt I could help get Mike cleaned up for Wackenhut. Emmert felt Wackenhut would like to have him mentally and emotionally straight to use his genius. I went to Pinole, California accompanied by Peter Zokosky and my wife and his wife. Hercules Powder Company which has been owned by DuPont. It had been sold, and his son Mike was manufacturing amphetamines, apparently unknown by his dad. Mike wanted to hire me. He brought with him to the meeting $100,000 in street money. was disheveled, dirty looking and smelled like he needed a bath. He said, "I would like to work with Wackenhut," as Emmert had been president of Armtec, which made caseless ammunition that was used in the Vietnam War. They made artillery ammunition out of nitrocellulose, with a metal cap and a traditional nose of each shell. The case, when fired would, would disintegrate. After disintegration, only the bottom of the shell would be left. Before this invention, the entire hot shell would be left, burning the legs of the soldiers. Zokosky had been president of this company which was the sole source for these shells, located in Coachella.   

Zokosky, Riconosciuto, Bob Frye, and myself went to two U.S. Arsenals, one was Dover Arsenal in New Jersey, and I forgot the name of the second in Indiana.  We sat there with absolute top brass in the United States in military physics talking about particle beams. 

Riconosciuto held his own all the way through.  I didn't know a particle beam from a  sunbeam.  I gave Wackenhut a lot of help with Mike because he was sent to me.  That's how we met Riconosciuto.  The bottom line was Riconosciuto was nuts.  He brought with him a young man named Victor (Petrucci).  They said they were running teenage prostitutes to service L.A. cops.  They brought some of their prostitutes with them.  Mike said he owned  that business.  Of course, he had all this money from manufacturing and selling drugs.  He  had been busted because to escape detection he had built an under-the-water laboratory to make drugs.  This way the lab couldn't be detected by Seattle Police helicopters.  This way the lab couldn't be detected by Seattle Police helicopters.  The guy is the closest to, if you ever read comic books, [Lex] Luther in Superman.  He is one of the most even people I ever met. My diagnosis was he suffered from a combination character defect and was a sociopath.

The four documents referenced in this article, came into my possession in the following manners:           

1)   Fingerprint Card dated 9-25-1981: Received from Governor Charlie Crist's office on October 16, 2009 by Virginia McCullough.

2)   Letter dated April 13, 1982 to Mr. Jim Hughes: Received from Ray Lavas by Virginia McCullough in May 1991.

3)   Service Contract dated September 27, 1981 and May 12, 1982: Received from Bobbi Riconosciuto in May 1991 by Virginia McCullough.           

4)   Letter to Army Discharge Review Board from April 4, 1983: Received from Desert Sun Publishing April 3, 1991 by Virginia McCullough.

There has never been any opportunity to establish the chain of custody and authenticity of these four documents in a court of law.  Therefore their historical value in assessing the history of the Cabazon Reservation must be evaluated using factors such as content, context and the character of the persons involved.

These documents might or might not have possible value in any court cases regarding the Cabazon Reservation.

Virginia McCullough © 8/5/10