Open main menu

Hermann Johann Heinrich Behrends (11 May 1907 – 4 December 1948) was a Nazi Party member and SS official with the rank of lieutenant general (Gruppenführer).[1]

Born in Rüstingen, Oldenburg, the son of a provincial innkeeper, he was educated to doctorate level in law at Marburg University but struggled to find employment in an economically depressed Weimar Germany.[2] He joined the Nazi Party in January 1932 and the SS the following month.[3] With no military experience he initially floundered but soon attracted the attentions of Reinhard Heydrich, who valued academic expertise, and he was transferred to the Sicherheitsdienst (SD).[4]

Becoming a close friend of Heydrich, Behrends was the first chief of the SD in Berlin.[5] He also served as Chief of Staff to Werner Lorenz in his capacity as head of the Hauptamt Volksdeutsche Mittelstelle (VOMI).[6] During the Second World War he was sent to Yugoslavia to lead the regional arm of the VOMI.[5] His star had fallen somewhat after Heydrich's death as Heinrich Himmler was unimpressed by him, sensing that he was too ambitious.[7]

On 5 July 1945, he faced charges from the British services in Flensburg. He was interned with the number 560294 in the Island Farm Special Camp in Bridgend, South Wales.[citation needed] On 16 April 1946 he was extradited to Yugoslavia. He was hanged in Belgrade on 4 December 1948.[5]

Decorations and awardsEdit


  1. ^ a b c Miller 2006, p. 90.
  2. ^ Lumans 1993, p. 50.
  3. ^ Lumans 1993, pp. 50–51.
  4. ^ Lumans 1993, p. 51.
  5. ^ a b c Snyder 1994, p. 242.
  6. ^ Lumans 1993, p. 45.
  7. ^ Lumans 1993.


  1. Valdis O. Lumans, Himmler's Auxiliaries: The Volksdeutsche Mittelstelle and the German National Minorities of Europe, 1933–1945, UNC Press Books, 1993, p. 50
  2. Miller, Michael (2006). Leaders of the SS and German Police, Vol. 1. San Jose, CA: R. James Bender. ISBN 978-93-297-0037-2.
  3. Snyder, Louis (1994) [1976]. Encyclopedia of the Third Reich. Da Capo Press. ISBN 978-1-56924-917-8.