Kraków, 25 November 1947

Rudolf Kowalewski
Employee of the Polish State Railways (retired)
Tenczyńska Street 2, Kraków

For the attention of
the Prosecutor’s Office in Kraków
Supreme National Tribunal

Regarding the trial against defendant Grabner, former head of Gestapo, I would like to present a few statements to the Prosecutor’s Office.

I kindly stress that defendant Grabner was, together with the commandant of the Auschwitz camp, Höß, a barbaric executioner of the 16 victims from 9 July 1940 mentioned below. The above-mentioned executioner has to admit to the Prosecution in this great trial that he is not “ein echter Wianerkind, Wianerblut” [a true-born Viennese], but “ein echter Wianermörder” [a true murderer from Vienna] with a vile conscience. Defendant Grabner was extremely happy when he saw people looking for “His Majesty Murderer” Höß to beg him to release their sons and husbands. That was the first time the endurance of the tortured victims from 1940 mentioned below was tested.

Of all the camp’s supervisors, the defendant was the most loyal host and guardian angel of the ghastly Höß. Grabner would often act as his deputy. They ordered mild punishments together. To welcome their victims in the camp – 25 lashes, and as a farewell gift – following great agony in the Auschwitz camp, when transferring the victims sentenced to death to a different camp – 75 lashes, until their flesh came off their bones.

Guardian angel Grabner did not let heartbroken parents or wives of the imprisoned husbands anywhere near Höß. Assisted by a few SS soldiers with guns ready to fire, he approached the begging people and asked in a raised voice, “Who are you looking for?” They would say, “We would like to speak to commandant Höß, please,” and Grabner would answer, “What? Höß? I am commandant Höß, and I arrested the people who had misbehaved, this is my business, I did it because it pleased me,” etc.

The city residents and my friends hid from that dangerous bandit.

I, the undersigned, provide names of the victims to the Prosecutor’s office: Bolesław Bicz, Józef Muszyński, Emil Kowalowski, Józef Patek, Stanisław Mrzygłód, Grzegorz Olek, Rudolf Gregor, Grzegorz Urbański, Władysław Szczudlik, Karol Jurek, Paweł Zbieszczyk, Tadeusz Kukulski, Stanisław Bargiel, Leopold Gunia, Gerhard Hejka, and Zdzisław Wiesiołek. The first five men were civilian workers renovating buildings in the camp, the rest were camp prisoners.

On 29 November 1940, following five months of torture in Auschwitz, the above-mentioned victims were sent to Mauthausen-Gusen. They were no longer people, but cripples covered in blood, whom I saw with my own eyes, in the presence of witnesses. After four months in Mauthausen, my son’s backbone was broken, and since he still revealed some signs of life, he was choked with his own scarf.

It is absolutely astounding that in the official investigation in the case of the five above- mentioned civilians who worked in the camp, the person who has been called as a witness to testify against his colleagues is electrician Urbański, resident in Auschwitz, although he worked in a completely different building and had no contact with them. He served as a witness in Auschwitz, in Katowice, and in Berlin for 14 days. Grabner liked him a lot. Maybe the Prosecution could ask defendant Grabner to explain in more detail why he has summoned that witness, if it were only to testify that witness Urbański wandered around Berlin for 14 days.

I very much regret that I cannot participate in such an important trial, but at the elderly age of 80, I feel weak and sick.