Air Force Col. James J. Fredericks, 52 an intelligence officer at the Pentagon who flew combat missions in Europe in World War II, died April 18 at Commonwealth Doctors Hospital after a heart attack.

He was assigned in September, 1975, to the Defense Intelligence Agency at the Pentagon as chief of the application and planning division. At the time of his death, he was assistant deputy director of the National Military Intelligence Center at the Pentagon.

Born in Detroit, Col. Fredericks was a student at the University of Detroit when he entered the Army Air Corps in February, 1944, and trained as a pilot. Sent to Europe, he participated in 30 aerial missions.

After the war, he had flying assignments at bases in this country. In 1966 and 1967, he was liaison officer in intelligence in Vietnam. He then saw duty at Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska.

In 1973, Col. Fredericks was assigned as assistant chief of staff for intelligence at Taipei, Taiwan, a position be held until coming here in 1975.

His many decorations included the Legion of Merit, the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal with four Oak Leaf Clusters and the Bronze Star.

He is survived by his wife, Betty, of the home in Arlington; a son, James, of Denver, Colo.; a daughter, Nancy J. Moon, of San Antonio, Tex.; his mother, Edythe H. Fredericks, of Ann Arbor, Mich.; a sister, Jeane Perret, of Plymouth, Mich., and four grandchildren.