Certified translation of the affidavit of Abdallah Melaouhi, the civil male nurse, who cared for Rudolf Hess for five years:
TO: The Service Registering Officer for North West Europe
In the Matter of the Births, Deaths and Marriages (Special Provisions) Act 1957
AND in the Matter of the Entry in the Register of Deaths of RUDOLF WALTHER RICHARD HESS
I, ABDALLAH MELAOUHI, of [address - censored due to privacy] do solemnly and sincerely
declare as follows:
- I worked as a male nurse caring for Rudolf Hess from 1 August 1982 until his death on 17 August 1987 at the Allied Military Prison in Spandau. From 1967 to 1970 I trained as a technical medical assistant in tropical diseases at the Institute of Tropical Medicine in Hamburg. From 1970, I continued my training as a qualified male nurse until 1973 when I received a Diploma Certificate in Nursing. In 1974 I moved to Berlin and worked at Hohengatow Hospital in the intensive care unit until 1976. I then attended the specialist medical school, Gauschule, Wedding, at the recommendation of the Department of Health at the Berlin Senate until 1977 and upon completing that training I received a Diploma in anaesthesia and the intensive care of sick people.
I was then promoted to Superior Male Nurse and went to work at Spandau Hospital(Krankenhaus, Spandau) in the intensive care unit until 1st August 1982 when I went to work in the Allied Military Prison in Spandau as Male Nurse for Rudolf Hess.
- On the day of Mr Hess' death, 17 August 1987, I commenced my duties, which involved caring for Mr Hess, as usual at 6.45 a.m. I assisted him, as was usual, with showering and dressing, and was present when he ate a meal at 10.30 a.m. At no time did he give any indication that his state of mind was disturbed or that he was unduly depressed. Shortly after the meal, he asked me to go to the nearby town of Spandau to purchase a ceramic pot to replace one which was defective. Mr Hess would not have made such a request merely to ensure my absence, since I was always absent in any event from midday, during my noon pause.
- At 2 p.m. I was called to the prison from my flat which was located outside, but in the immediate vicinity of, the prison (to which I had gone on my return from the town of Spandau). After some delay I reached the summerhouse in the prison garden where I was told that there had been an incident. The small door at the front of the summerhouse was closed.
- When I entered the summerhouse, the scene was like a wrestling match had taken place; the entire place was in confusion. The straw tiled mat which covered the floor was in disarray, although only the day before I had cleaned the floor and had left the straw tiled mat carefully arranged in its usual place. A tall lamp had fallen over, but I clearly remember that the cable attached to the lamp was still connected to the main socket. It was this lamp cable which the authorities later said that Mr Hess had used to hang himself. A round table and Mr Hess's armchair had also been overturned. In summary, none of the furniture or equipment was in its usual place, and there is no question in my mind but that a struggle had taken place in the summerhouse.
- The body of Mr Hess was lying on the floor of the summerhouse, apparently lifeless. Near to his body stood two soldiers dressed in US Army uniforms. I had never seen either soldier before. I also saw an American guard, whom I knew as a Mr Tony Jordan. There was no cable anywhere near the body of Mr Hess; as I have said, the only cable was attached to the fallen lamp which was still plugged into the wall.
- I immediately proceeded to examine Mr Hess. I could not detect any respiration, pulse or heartbeat. I estimated that death had occurred 30 to 40 minutes earlier.
- The guard whom I knew as Jordan stood near Mr Hess's feet and appeared overwrought. He was sweating heavily, his shirt was saturated with sweat and he was not wearing a tie. I said to Jordan: "what have you done with him?" He replied: "The pig is finished, you won't have to work a night shift any longer". I told him to bring the emergency case (which contained a first aid kit) and the oxygen appliance, while I commenced artificial respiration. When Jordan returned with the equipment, I noticed that he had first taken the opportunity to change his clothes. The equipment which he brought had clearly been interfered with. The seal on the emergency case had been broken open and its contents were in a state of disorder. The intubation instrument set had no battery and the tube was perforated. Further, the oxygen appliance had no oxygen in it. Yet when I had checked the emergency case and the oxygen appliance that same morning, as part of my normal duties, I am certain that both had been in full working order.
- Since I did not have any of the necessary equipment I did the best I could which was to perform mouth to mouth resuscitation on Mr Hess and I asked one of the soldiers in American uniform to conduct a heart massage on him. This was at approximately 3.20 pm. These efforts had no discernable effect.
- A doctor and a medical orderly whom I did not recognise arrived from the English Military Hospital in an ambulance. They brought a heart-lung machine into the summerhouse. I tried to operate the machine but it did not appear to function. Mr Hess was taken to hospital. I accompanied him and made further unsuccessful attempts to resuscitate him in the ambulance. There were final unsuccessful attempts to resuscitate him by the doctors at the hospital. He was pronounced dead at the hospital at 16.10 hours.
- During the five years in which I daily cared for Mr Hess, I was able to obtain a clear and accurate impression of his physical capabilities. I do not consider, given his physical condition, that it would have been possible for Mr Hess to have committed suicide in the manner later published by the Allied powers. He had neither the strength nor the mobility to place an electric flex around his neck, knot it and either hang or strangle himself. Mr Hess was so weak that he needed a special chair to help him stand up. He walked bent over with a cane and was almost blind. If ever he fell to the ground he could not get up again. Most significantly, his hands were crippled with arthritis; he was not able, for example, to tie his shoelaces. I consider that he was incapable of the degree of manual dexterity necessary to manipulate the electric flex as suggested. Further, he was not capable of lifting his arms above his shoulders; it is therefore in my view not possible that he was able to attach the electric flex to the window catch from which he is alleged to have suspended himself.
- Having regard to first Mr Hess' physical condition; second, the scene which I discovered in the summerhouse, in particular the location of the electric flex; and third, the surrounding circumstances as I have described them, I am firmly of the view that Mr Hess could not possibly have committed suicide as has been claimed. In my view, it is clear that he met his death by strangulation, at the hands of a third party.
Declared before me at: [handwritten "Berlin"]
Signature of Declarant: [signature of Abdallah Melaouhi]
on: [handwritten "17.2.1994"]
Qualification of person or officer taking the declaration: Reinhard Gizinski, Notary Public, Berlin