Polish War Crimes, Liaison Group, Team Brunswick
Hildesheim, 17 October 1946
Investigating Judge: Maj. R. Zdankiewicz, District Court judge
Reporter: U. Egler, secretary
Case against: [Alice] Orlowski
A witness appears, who, having been advised of the criminal liability for making false declarations and legally sworn, testifies:
|Name and surname||Jan Woźniak|
|Religious affiliation||Roman Catholic|
|Relationship to the suspect||none|
|Convicted of perjury||no|
|Current place of residence||Trillke-Werke, Hildesheim|
|Place of residence in Poland||Warsaw, Żoliborz, Krasińskiego Street 8|
In February 1942, when I was in Puławy, I was arrested by the Germans as a political prisoner and then, in April, transported to the Majdanek concentration camp, where I remained up until January 1943. From there, I was transferred to a concentration camp in Germany.
From my time at the Majdanek camp, I know Orlowski, a female overseer at the laundry kommando. She was a German who wore an SS man uniform and a big pistol fixed to her hip. Orlowski also carried on her a powerful whip with a hard handle, flexible at the end, with which she beat Häftlings [prisoners].
She beat me a couple of times, either with that whip or with her hand, or alternatively, on a few occasions, I was kicked. Orlowski approached you from the back, by surprise. When she noticed someone break off work, even for a second, she immediately beat and tortured the victim. Let me explain that the laundry kommando employed around 800 women and the 40 of us, men, who were assigned there for hard labor. Let me say that Orlowski, as a ward and commandant of that laundry, tortured the Häftlings working there day after day, and it made no difference to her if she beat a man or a woman. I witnessed on countless occasions as Orlowski beat and tortured these people.
During my time with the laundry kommando at the Majdanek camp, that is over the period of around two and a half months, I witnessed first-hand as Orlowski in some cases tortured Häftlings to the point that they died from the blows she dealt them. There were around 150 such cases over the said period. Orlowski would first hit the victim with a whip, coiling it around their neck, then pulled them to the ground, all this was followed by systematic beating and kicking until the victim had had enough and died. Such a Häftling was then moved to the crematorium.
Because Orlowski had a reputation for cruelty, prisoners would try to avoid her and it would sometimes happen that a Häftling managed to shake her off. But in many cases, Orlowski turned for help to the kapos, who captured the escapee, and Orlowski would then kill the victim.
Orlowski was at Majdanek up until January 1943 and then left with the women’s transport to Auschwitz. I do not know what happened to her later and it was only by accident that I recognized her while waiting at a Trillke-Werke Hildesheim electric bus stop. I immediately identified Orlowski as the person who tortured Häftlings at Majdanek. I came up to her and asked if her name was Kozłowska (let me explain that in my agitation I used the wrong name), and when she replied “Nein” in German, I was one hundred percent sure that it was her. I ran to our camp to ask for assistance in arresting her, but in the meantime, Orlowski, probably having realized what was going on, escaped to the woods. After an hour-long pursuit, I apprehended her together with the camp police in Neuhof. I am not mistaken as to her identity and I state decisively that the person whom I then detained is precisely the Orlowski about whom I am testifying in this report. I can repeat my statement any time, looking her straight in the eye.
At that I conclude. The report was read out before it was signed.