SS-Major Horst Kopkow: From the Gestapo to British Intelligence

Author(s): Stephen Tyas 

ISBN: 9781781555989
£17.50 £25.00
Gestapo Major Horst Kopkow had the deaths of 200 Allied agents on his conscience; not a problem for Britain’s Secret Intelligence Service (SIS).

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  • Previously unpublished documents in archives in Europe and the USA show how Britain’s Secret Intelligence Service showed a insensitive disregard for its former agents murdered in German concentration camps

  • A callous disregard by recruiting the Gestapo major responsible for their deaths as a consultant in Britain’s own post-war counter espionage activities against Soviet agents

  • Research that shows not only how Britain recruited Kopkow, but also protected him from prosecution as a war criminal

  • Historically rich in detail with photographs of many of the characters involved

On 27 May 1942, SS-General Reinhard Heydrich was assassinated by Czech agents who were trained in the UK and dropped by parachute into Czechoslovakia. Heydrich succumbed to his wounds on 4 June 1942. Two days later, Gestapo Captain Horst Kopkow’s department at Reich National Security headquarters was given fresh orders. From 6 June 1942 until the end of the war, Kopkow was responsible for co-ordinating the fight against Soviet and British agents dropped in Germany or German-occupied territories. This new direction for Kopkow made his name.

Within months, the ‘Rote Kapelle’ Soviet espionage ring was uncovered in Belgium whose traces went directly to Berlin and Paris. A new counter-espionage war began and agents caught would pay with their lives. In France and Holland, the Gestapo caught many SOE agents trained in Britain.

By spring 1944, around 150 British agents had been deported to concentration camps. By December 1944, almost all had been murdered without trial and Kopkow was directly involved in these murders. Arrested by British forces after the war, Kopkow was extensively interrogated due to his counter-espionage experience. For the next 20 years, Kopkow was a consultant for Britain’s Secret Intelligence Service.

BOOK ISBN 9781781555989
FORMAT 234 x 156 mm
BINDING Hardback
PAGES 272 pages
ILLUSTRATIONS 39 black-and-white photographs



Stephen Tyas is a retired businessman and now a freelance researcher. He has published numerous articles on German Security Police operations between 1939-1945. Peter Witte and Stephen Tyas jointly published A New Document on the Deportation and Murder of Jews during ‘Einsatz Reinhardt’ 1942 (2001), the so-called Hoefle telegram.