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Karl Möckel

Karl Möckel
Born January 9, 1901(1901-01-09)
Klingenthal, Germany
Died January 28, 1948 (aged 47)
Montelupi prison
Cause of death Execution by hanging
Occupation SS-Obersturmbannführer
Known for Head of Department IV (Administration) at Auschwitz
Political party National Socialist German Workers' Party (NSDAP)

Karl Ernst Möckel (January 9, 1901 - January 28, 1948) was an SS-Obersturmbannführer (Lieutenant Colonel) and administrator at Auschwitz concentration camp. He was executed as a war criminal.



Möckel was born in Klingenthal, Germany where, after secondary school, he worked as an accountant. In 1926, he joined the Nazi party and the Schutzstaffel. From 1933 - 1941, he worked in the main offices of the SS, including the SSS Comptroller's Office (WVHA). In 1941, he joined the Waffen-SS, the SS combat arm, and served in a reserve battalion. In Spring 1943, he arrived at Auschwitz taking over as the head of the administration of the camp.[1 ]


At Auschwitz

Möckel remained at the camp until its evacuation in January of 1945. As head of Department IV (Administration), he was responsible for the acquisition and distribution of food and clothing and the management of prisoners' property.[1 ] In addition, Department IV encompassed the management of the property confiscated from exterminated prisoners, as well as building maintenance, which included the servicing of the crematoria and gas chambers.[1 ]

Due to the sheer volume of money and valuables (mainly jewelry and watches made from precious metals) taken from prisoners, SS men struggled to keep up with the task of inspecting, sorting and counting them.[2] Möckel stated that fifteen to twenty suitcases of valuables were sent to the WVHA quarterly.[3]


Möckel was tried by the Supreme National Tribunal in Kraków and sentenced to death. His sentenced was carried out by hanging in Montelupich Prison, Kraków on the 28th January 1948.[4]

At the rank of SS-Obersturmbannführer (Lt. Colonel, the rank also held by Rudolf Höss), Möckel was the joint-highest ranking individual to be prosecuted at the Auschwitz Trial. (The other being a commandant of the Auschwitz main camp, Arthur Liebehenschel.)


  • Tadeusz Cyprian, Jerzy Sawicki, (in Polish). Siedem wyroków Najwyższego Trybunału Narodowego (1962 ed.). Instytut Zachodni. pp. 383. OCLC 11797830.  
  • Rudolf Höss (in Polish). Autobiografia Rudolfa Hössa, komendanta obozu oświęcimskiego (1989 ed.). Wydawn. Prawnicze. pp. 366. ISBN 8321904815.  
  • Świebocki, Henryk. Iwaszko, Tadeusz. Długoborski, Wacław. Piper, Franciszek. Lasik, Aleksander. Brand, William. Auschwitz, 1940-1945: central issues in the history of the camp (2000 ed.). Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum. pp. 452. ISBN 8385047875.  
  • Gábor Kádár, Zoltán Vági (in ENGLISH). Self-financing genocide: the gold train, the Becher case and the wealth of Hungarian Jews (2004 ed.). Central European University Press. pp. 413. ISBN 9639241539.  


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