War Crimes Trials - Vol. II The Belsen Trial. 'The Trial of Josef Kramer and Forty Four Others'

Appendices (Affidavits & Statements - Makar, Dr. Peter Leonard)


1. I am 37 years of age and a Doctor of Medicine. I escaped from Poland in January, 1940, as I was wanted by the Germans for spreading British propaganda. I went to Yugoslavia, where I was captured by the Italians and put to work in a hospital at Zagreb. In January, 1941, I escaped and went to Cirvenica, where I worked as a doctor in a hospital. In June or July, 1943, I was recaptured by the Italians and sent to Malinski, and when the Germans took over Malinski on 11th January, 1944, I was taken to Dachau, I was transferred to Belsen Camp on 20th July, 1944.

2. I recognise Juana Bormann, No. 3 on photograph 19, as being an S.S. woman usually in charge of a pig-sty at Belsen. I saw her on two occasions in March, 1945, beat women prisoners. On the first occasion she beat a girl, whose name I do not know, on the face and head with her fists because she had caught her stealing vegetables. The girl fell to the ground and was helped away by her friend. On the second occasion a girl tried to steal clothing from the clothing store, so Bormann beat her on the face and beat with her fist. When I walked away, the girl, whose name I do not know, was still being beaten.

3. I recognise Klara Opitz, No. 1 on photograph 37, as being an S.S. woman in charge of female working parties at Belsen. On one occasion I was passing a party when I saw Opitz kicking a girl and beating her on the face and body with her fists. I have often heard from other prisoners that she made a particular habit of beating the girls.

6. Müller was an ex-Gestapo agent and he was in charge of people who were detailed for a bath. After the bath they would be given a change of underwear, and some would try to get an extra suit. Müller would then beat them with a leather strap on their bodies until they collapsed. He would then kick them as they lay on the ground. The bodies would be taken away by other prisoners on a cart and I cannot say that any died, though I have been told that some did. I have been present when these beatings have occurred. I should describe Müller as aged about 36, height 5 ft. 10 in., fat, blue eyes, fair hair, round and red face.

7. Between June and August, 1944, I estimate that between 400 and 500 prisoners died in Belsen from injections, and for which Hauptsturmführer Dr. Jaeger was responsible. I have heard him give orders to a German prisoner named Karl Rothe, a confirmed criminal, to give injections to certain prisoners whose numbers he [Jaeger] would give him. He also gave permission to Rothe to inject anyone else he wanted. Those chosen by Jaeger were mostly political prisoners. These people were told to report to a special room in a block, but they knew the reason for their having to go, so they refused. They were then beaten on S.S. orders by other prisoners. While they were on their beds suffering from the effects of the beating, Rothe injected them over the heart. They would cry out, and to smother the cries Rothe and the other prisoners detailed for the job would grasp them by the throat and in about four minutes they would be dead. I have seen the liquid used for the injections brought into the hospital by a German medical orderly and given to Rothe. The prisoners would sometimes fill their cigarette lighters with it. I have smelt it and it smelt like petrol [Comment: Phenol]. I once asked a patient who was moaning, "What is wrong?" and he answered, "They have injected me twice over the heart." The symptoms were difficult breathing, excruciating pain and slowing down of the pulse. A prisoner named Eric Boerfler used to help Rothe with the injections and he left the camp with the S.S. before the English [British] came. Rothe has been hung by his fellow prisoners. When Jaeger left the camp in December, 1944, the injections ceased and Doctors Schnabel and Klein took over his duties.

Appendices (Affidavits & Statements - Makar, Dr. Peter Leonard)