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Unread postPosted: Tue Jan 23, 2007 8:59 pm 
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Watergate plotter dies at age 88
From correspondents in Miami
January 24, 2007


HOWARD Hunt, the veteran CIA spy who helped plan the break-in at Washington's Watergate complex which brought down president Richard Nixon in the most notorious political scandal in US history, has died at 88. Hunt, who reportedly had battled pneumonia, plotted the night-time burglary on June 17, 1972 at the Watergate offices of the Democratic National Committee, together with fellow White House conspirator G. Gordon Liddy.

The accidental discovery of the break-in snowballed into the scandal which embroiled the White House and led to Nixon's stepping down. "He passed away today, in Miami,'' said a source who did not wish to be identified at Hunt's Miami Shores Presbyterian church, where he was a regular worshipper. "He died from natural causes.''

Hunt served 33 months in jail for conspiracy, wiretapping and burglary for his part in Watergate, which revealed the existence of a secret White House slush fund, sparked a cover-up and eventually saw Nixon become the only US president to resign in August 1974. Fellow Nixon operative Liddy went to prison for more than four years for the break-in, which aimed to plant listening devices to spy on the Democrats during the Republican president's re-election campaign.

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