On 16 November 1945, in Treblinka, Judge Z. Łukaszkiewicz interviewed the person specified below as a witness, without swearing him in. Having been advised of the criminal liability for making false declarations, the witness testified as follows:
|Forename and surname||Marian Łopuszyński|
|Names of parents||Klemens|
|Place of residence||Mrozy|
In July 1940 I leased a gravel mine located near the Treblinka camps. In the spring of 1942 the German authorities took over the gravel mine, removing me as a lessee. Despite this, I often visited the gravel pit as a representative of construction companies from Warsaw, for which I delivered gravel. Currently, since the arrival of the Red Army, I have been running the gravel pit again on my own account.
My observations of the camps set up by Germans in Treblinka enable me to state the following facts.
At the end of September 1941 a labor camp was put into operation, called the Polish Treblinka. There was a line of huts constructed there, the area was surrounded with wire and first prisoners were brought. During the first stage in which the camp was operational most prisoners were Jews. I suppose there were 90 percent of Jews. Later the number of Poles put in the camp gradually increased, so towards the end they certainly constituted more than a half of the prisoner population.
Initially, the treatment of prisoners was relatively humane, then from 1942 onwards they started to be maltreated and tortured in a bestial way. During this period, Ukrainians were sent to the camp as its personnel, and they committed the most horrible atrocities. The commandant of the camp was an SS-man, in addition, there were some SS-men in the camp, who also mistreated and tortured prisoners. Prisoners were used to work in the gravel mine and transported in wagons to the Małkinia railway station for forced labor.
I know that during forced labor, a lot of people were killed. In addition, in the woods located near the camp there were constant executions of Poles and Jews.
The camp was in operation until almost the arrival of the Red Army. At the last moment, most of the Polish prisoners were sent home and the Jews were shot to death in the woods.
As for the extermination camp for Jews – if I am not mistaken – its construction started in the spring of 1942. At harvest time of that year transports of Jews started to arrive in large numbers. The highest frequency of the transports lasted a few months; later, their number decreased.
I cannot provide details concerning the number of transports, since not being at the gravel pit all the time I was not able to conduct regular observations. Trains with Jews arrived at the Treblinka railway station, from where 20 wagons at a time were moved onto the ramp of the camp. A lot of people from transports who tried to escape or were asking for some water were killed at the station. The personnel of these trains, consisting of Ukrainians, Latvians and Lithuanians shot at the wagons (through their wooden walls) with their guns, killing many people. Each wagon usually contained from 100 to 120 people.
One day, while I was at the Treblinka railway station, I witnessed the arrival of such a transport. Since many people from the transport tried to escape, the personnel opened fire which was so heavy that after a while they ran out of ammunition and had to finish the wounded people off with their rifle butts.
On my way to the gravel pit I had to walk alongside the extermination camp. The journey made a terrifying impression on me, since there was constant moaning and hysterical screams from women. The impression was so strong that I am still shocked today.
I heard that the killing in the camp was conducted in the gas chambers. After people had been gassed, their corpses were allegedly transported in wagons into pits. Initially, the corpses of the victims were buried in pits dug by Bagier diggers. Later, the corpses started to be cremated and this cremation continued throughout 1943.
In the spring of 1944, the area of the camp was ploughed and sown. The Germans “settled” a Ukrainian here and he ran a farm in the area.
The witness interview report was read out to the witness and he confirmed it by signing it on each page.