The murderers

The executions were carried out by the members of SS-Wachsturmbann Eimann from Gdańsk, Einsatzkommando 16, military police officers, members of Selbstschutz, and Germans from Wejherowo and Puck. In some cases the victims were murdered by their neighbors or by people whom they had known. The operation was managed by the head of Gestapo in Gdańsk and of Einsatzkommando 16, Dr. Rudolf Tröger, and by the criminal director of Gestapo in Gdynia, Friedrich Class. The firing squad consisted of ca. 40 to 60 individuals. A special sentry and assault unit Wachsturmbann Eimann was under the command of Kurt Eimann.

Selbstschutz was dissolved after the task was completed at the end of November 1939, and its members were included in other police units and transferred to other towns. In that way they were protected against criminal responsibility, and their future identification was hindered.

After the War, most perpetrators settled in northern Germany. Several murderers underwent criminal trials. A number of capital sentences were pronounced. They were received by SS-Untersturmführer Herbert Teuffel (1948), SS- Gruppenführer Richard Hildebrandt (1951), NSDAP Gauleiter Albert Forster (1952) and Fredrich Freimann. The commander of SS-Wachsturmbann Eimann, Karl Eimann, served two out of four years in prison to which he had been sentenced (1968), whereas SS-Oberführer Georg Ebrecht did not serve his sentence of three years in prison, as the internment from 1945 was credited against the sentence.

The head of the execution commando from Wejherowo, Hans Söhn (1909-1987), and SS-Obersturmbahnnführer Paul Köpke were never convicted, even though the German prosecutor’s offices instituted legal proceedings against them. The prosecutor’s offices in Munich (1961), Dortmund (1964) and in Mannheim (1965) examined the case of Hans Söhn. Also the prosecutor’s office in Dortmund (1964) questioned Paul Köpke. And Gustaw Bamberger, who was the mayor of Wejherowo during the German occupation, became a deputy mayor of Hannover after the War.


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