Initiated on 7 September 2021

Current status: 30 September 2021




Chapter 10b   (24-9'21)

Chapter 10c !



KV 2/451-1, page 3   (minute 1804a)

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            Major Vesey.  B.1.

                    I (Major J.M.A. Gwyer) saw Ritter (now an Obst. instead of a Major in 1941) at CSDIC (Combiner Services Detailed Interrogation Centre) / WEA (Western European Army?) on Tuesday, 7th May (1946). The results of my interrogation will be incorporated in a full CSDIC report (PF 62876; KV 2/85 .. KV 2/88), which will, I hope, be reaching you presently.  In the meantime, you mat like to have the general account of the results and of my own impressions of Ritter (foregoing in these series - called the Doctor). This may be summarised as follows:

1.    The original CSDIC report, although it appeared extremely inadequate, did, I think, represent fairly accurately the truth as known to Ritter. The fault was that report not explain the reasons for Ritter's curious lack of knowledge his own cases.  It is clear from talking to him that Ritter is not attempting to withhold the truth, nor do I think that his memory is especially bad.  On the contrary, what he does remember, he remembers clearly, and, considering the lapse of time, in considerable detail. (Ritter left the British controlled Theatre before mid 1941, and we currently approach May 1946)  It is also clear, however, that his handling of the cases under his control was from the outset extremely slack (loose). Whenever he could leave a case, or part of a case, to some other section, e.g. Abteilung II (Sabotage) or Eins Marine (I M) (Ritter himself was Referatsleiter of I L (Luftwaffe / GAF) at Ast Hamburg, up to somewhere in spring 1941) he did so. As a result, his knowledge, even of the Snow (Arthur Owens) case, is strictly confined to those parts of it which he handled personally.  Of the rest, he remembers very little, and never, even at the time, knew very much.  (AOB: his resistance towards the Americans and British were caused by the way and their according attitude towards post war interrogator whom behaved clearly as the conquers, which cause a resentment toward them. This is a phenomenon, is more often encountered in post war diaries; such by Herbert Wichmann whom during the wartime years headed (Leiter) Ast Hamburg [531], 45 Jahre Danach; Bericht des Kapitän zur See a.D.) (Their common complaints considered often their treatment at Camp 020, where quite likely some went deliberately  not according the Convention of Geneva)  

2.       For these reasons it is comparatively useless to interrogate Ritter about such problems as "the man from Manchester" or the south African  (Charlie; real name Charles Esborn. PF 48283, KV 2/454) (G226)  (G226return) or the south African" or the Infra Red man"  (Dr. Hill). I think Ritter is perfectly sincere (straight) in saying that he has very little knowledge of these matters, as they were all handled, or he assumes them to have been handled, by other officers or other sections. The only problem which it was possible to clear up at all thoroughly was that of Ritter's final relations with Snow (Arthur Owens, German cover name Johnny) and Celery (Walter Dicketts, German cover name Brown) during their last (also their first visit in connection with Major Ritter in February/March 1941)

    (Q260 ↓↓↓↓   (Q260return)   

     Here Ritter was comparatively explicit.  He explained that he had very little confidence in Snow (Arthur Owens, German cover name Johnny) before the meeting took place, as his faith had been shaken first of all by the North Sea episode and secondly by the ease with which Snow Arthur Owens was able to arrange passages to Lisbon for himself and for Celery. (The latter is incorrect as Walter Dicketts arrived by ship from Liverpool first at Gibraltar thereafter to Lisbon)      (J228)     (J228return)     Unbelievable that here Major Ritter points exactly what: T.A. Robertson, Mr. D.G. White, Mr. J.H. Marriott and other all engaged at M.I.5. was not to accept that Arthur Owens' story was not a lie! First Ritter also points at the blame of providing for Arthur Owens (Snow) a priority airline seat, notwithstanding the considerable waiting list for flight to Lisbon from Bristol.  It all was so evident, but they refused to consider that it was (also) their fault that the Snow case had been blown. Mr. Marriott  pointed that: I am more than ever convinced that Snow's (Arthur Owens') is a case not for the Security Service, but for a brain specialist.    Maybe a better part of self-reflection would have prevented their apparent "tunnel visions".  I (AOB) would not say that Snow had  no curious behaviours, but mad people are from all times; and everywhere.

KV 2/451-1, page 4

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Ritter was, however, still in the mood of hoping that Snow would be able to provide explanation.  He explained to me (Major J.M.A. Gwyer), rather naively, that by this time he (then Major Ritter) had already posted away from Hamburg (Ritter himself wanted to get away from the Abwehr job and as many men searched for a more active engagement; Ritter chose Rommel's DAK endeavours, in North Africa) and was no longer personally interested in the case to the same extent, but was, as he put it, "anxious to leave something behind him".  I took this mean that he believed himself that the case was already blown, but was anxious, if possible, to postpone public recognition of this fact until he himself was safely in North Africa. (AOB, this fellow interrogator, did not possess an understanding what the mood of many Germans, in military Service  were; these often young men wanted to become engaged in thrilling prosperous developments. Their only means was to apply for an active military employment. My just recently buried best friend Rudolf Staritz (3.9.2021 at an age of 99 at Ziegenrück) also applied for an active military engagement in stead of drawing schematics spy set schematics and/or regular W/T signalling between Stahnsdorf and, for instance, the station Sabine in Madrid. He was sent to espionage groups, known as: Unternehmen Dromedar and ended up in the Caucasus, in Autumn 1942; he, of course, suffered also from the big consequences after the Russian campaign initiated on 9 November 1942).  He told me that he did not directly tax Snow (Arthur Owens)  when he saw him with being under control, but that Snow must certainly be gathered from his manner that his suspicions had been aroused. His opinion of celery (Walter Dicketts, German cover name Mr. Brown) which derived from and was confirmed by both his own statements and those of Snow (Arthur Owens / Johnny), was that his status was that of a III F agent (section designation for the counter-espionage), who had been given the mission of penetrating Snow's (Arthur Owens') network (As Arthur Owens was born in Wales, be recruited mainly Welshmen, of whom almost all were in the hands of M.I.5

            He (Ritter) was therefore inclined to assume from the moment that he saw Celery (Walter Dicketts) that the case was already effectively over.  On the other hand, he saw a bare possibility that the disaster might be staffed off with the assistance of Celery (Walter Dicketts), and acted on his assumption in accordance with his policy of leaving something behind him.

            Ritter's account of events after Celery (Walter Dicketts) reached Hamburg was that Celery had there admitted his status as a III F agent (counter-espionage section), but had, at the same time, offered his services to the Germans.  These were accepted, not so much from any confidence in Celery (Walter Dicketts) as in the hope that the case might after all be rescued from disaster in their? way.

            It was on this footing that Celery was allowed to rejoin Snow (Arthur Owens) in Lisbon, and the pair to return to England. At this point, however, Ritter made on interesting comment. he told me that he had sent back (more correctly: allowed to return to England, as they easily could have been kidnapped by the Germans, otherwise)  Snow (Arthur Owens) and Celery (Walter Dicketts)  to England with (as we already knew) instructions for operating a Triple Cross, and a sum of between £300 and £400 in cash.  I challenged him on this last point, and suggested that it had in fact been £300 or £400 but £9000 or £10,000. At this Ritter showed the greatest surprise, and protested that he had never in his life given Snow (Johnny / Arthur Owens) even as much as £500 at one go.  When I assured him that the pair had in fact returned to England with a much larger sum, he said that he could only suppose that the money had been → (page 5)

KV 2/451-1, page 5

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→obtained from Abteilung II (Referat concerned with sabotage) in Madrid, with whom, as he now recollected, Snow (Arthur Owens had also been in touch during his stay in Lisbon. (likely through Sdf. Dr. Blaum Referatsleiter II KOP) (Dr. Friedrich Blaum alias Baumann and Bodo (KV 3/412).

            I gathered that Ritter had not found it prudent to pass on to Abteilung II any suspicions of Snow (Arthur Owens) or Celery that he might himself have entertained.

3.    Finally, to show that he ran true from to the last, you may like to hear the story of Ritter's final official appointment and its sequel (outcome).

            (AOB: neglected here his interlude with Laszlo Almásy and emergency landing at the Mediterranean sea, after a failed atempt to get 'El Pascha' out of Egypt (June 1941); where Ritter had to spend some time in a hospital)

            He was (became) the commanding officer for the anti-aircraft defences at Hanover on the occasion of the last saturation raid (bear please in mind: that Ritter was a GAF officer, also at Ast Hamburg).  That night he studied very carefully the reports received from Radar and ground observers, and formed the view that the various small scale diversionary attacks in progress in other   parts of Germany represented our main effort for the night.  He therefore gave orders for the defence of Hanover (Hannover) to stand down. Precisely six minutes later a matter of some 1500 bombers arrived over the town with results that are still visible. Ritter then withdrew to civilian life.  However, he had a slight come-back later, He now the prisoner in charge of the squad which sweeps out the mess in CSDIC, and in that capacity once under his command  (Zeitzler), the late chief of staff of the O.K.W.

F.2.c.  15.5.46                Sgd. J.M.A. Gwyer, Major

KV 2/451-1, page 6        (minute 1803a)

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Snow (Arthur Owens), Biscuit (Sam McCarthy), Celery (Walter Dicketts), Charlie (Charles Eschborn) and Summer (Gösta Caroli).

            It will not be possible to give here more than the briefest outline of the interesting and, in some places, even melodramatic story. Snow (Arthur Owens) is a Welsh electrical engineer, born on 14 April 1899 at name made invisible, South Wales.  At a fairly early age he emigrated to Canada and there acquired Canadian citizenship.  In 1933 (maybe caused also by the great depression of the early 1930s) to this country and took up employment as a consulting electrical engineer to the Expended Metal company, a firm which produces among other things banks of resistances and similar equipment  and and which is the holder of a number of Admiralty contracts. Snow (Arthur Owens) was also interested in a firm name made invisible which had been formed many words made invisible for the purpose of exploiting certain inventions of Snow's (Arthur Owens') in connection with accumulators and batteries.  During this period of his life Snow (Arthur Owens) travelled frequently to Germany on business, and was in the habit of bringing back a certain amount of technical information which he had passed to the D.E.E.'s Department (Electrical Engineering Department)  at Admiralty.  At the beginning of 1936 Snow (Arthur Owens) told his contact that he would like to work regularly for the Government and was therefore passed on, through D.D.N.I.(?), to name made invisible of S.I.S. (M.I.6), who employed him for a short while as an agent, apparently with good results. Towards the end of the year, however, a letter from Snow (Arthur Owens) to Postbox 629 Hamburg   (L228)  (L228return), a knowing German cover address, was intercepted (due to censorship) in transit.  This letter made it clear that Snow had been previously in contact with the Germans and was about to have a meeting with them in Cologne (AOB, which actually did not happen this way).  This appointment he kept, and further letters were observed to pass between him and the Germans.  No action was taken against Snow (Arthur Owens) himself as it was anticipated that he might presently confess. In December (1936 or 37) he did in fact do so the following story.

            Snow (Arthur Owens) said that his business had brought him into contact with a German engineer named Pieper, from whom he had attempted to obtain information (which eventually did not mature). The information which Pieper Pieper had supplied had not been wholly satisfactory and after a while Snow (Arthur Owens)  had found himself unable to continue to pay Piepers expenses. At this point Pieper had proposed to him that he, Snow (Arthur Owens), should work as an agent for the Germans rather than the British. Snow had fallen in with this suggestion in orderm so he said, to penetrate the German Secret Service in the British interest.  Pieper had accordingly arranged meeting for him with the Germans at Cologne (which actually never took place) and elsewhere, and Snow (Arthur Owens) had been accepted by them as an agent.

            It is still not clear to what extent Snow's (Arthur Owens') confession was tendentious (subjective). It can however be stated that he must have been recruited by the Germans in much the way that he described, and at some date after he had become an agent of the S.I.S.  There can be little doubt that the Germans were aware of his connection with S.I.S., though according to Snow (Arthur Owens) himself they believed him to have broken of  his connection before he took service with them (the Germans).  At all events they did not subsequently make any attempt to employ him in the capacity of a double agent, but rather to use him as a straight forward reporting agent. As there were some difficulties in the way of proceeding in the way of proceeding against Snow (Arthur Owens) continued his connection with the Germans. A great part, however, though not all, of his correspondence continued to be intercepted and from time to time Snow (Arthur Owens) himself gave information either to Colonel Hinchley-Cooke    (M229)   (M229return) ↔, or latterly to Special Branch, about the contacts which he had made with the Germans and the information which he was asked to supply.  Substantially, from the end of 1936 until the outbreak of war Snow (Arthur Owens) worked for as a straightforward German agent, whose activities, although known to the authorities, were not interfered with in any important respect. Snow's (Arthur Owens') principal contact in Germany was Major Ritter @ Dr. Rantzau (later in British documents also designated the Doctor), who has since become familiar in a great number of cases both here and in America.  During the time that Snow (Arthur Owens) knew him he appeared  to occupy the position of the Referatsleiter of I Luft (I L), Hamburg, and Snow's (Arthur Owens') work therefore consisted largely of collecting airforce information.  From time to time however, as is clear from his correspondence, he supplied information both for the naval (I M) and the military (I H)  At one moment also he seems to have made an approach on the Germans' behalf to the B.U.F. (British Union of Fascists), to whom he put forward a scheme for the establishment of four secret transmitters if England for the purpose of disseminating propaganda in time of war.  This must presumably have been the function → (page 7)

KV 2/451-1, page 7

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of Abteilung II (strange because it did not concern sabotage - but more a matter of the German Foreign Office (Ribbentrop's Auswärtiges Amt), and it can therefore be said that during the three years between 1936 and (end of August) 1939 Snow (Arthur Owens) was in reality acting in England as an agent for Referat I and II (↑↑). Although we cannot be certain on this point, it seems from his own account that Snow (Arthur Owens) successfully represented to the Germans that he possessed a number of sub-agents in England (mainly Welshmen), amounting perhaps to a dozen or fifteen men. It is probable, though not certain, that all these persons existed only in Snow's (Arthur Owens') imagination. (AOB, at least we encountered G.W. Gwilym Williams and W.W.   (P230)  (P230return))

            In January 1939 Snow (Arthur Owens) informed Special Branch that he expected to receive a wireless transmitter from Germany.  (Q230)  (Q230return) Later in the some month he did receive a letter which contained instructions for the working of such a set and a ticket from the cloakroom at Victoria Station where the wireless set had been deposited for him in a suitcase. This set was handed over by Snow (Arthur Owens) (notice (Q230) and (Q230return)) to Special Branch, and examined by S.I.S., and then returned to him ((Arthur Owens). He installed it in his own house and attempted to establish wireless communication with Hamburg. It appears from his correspondence, however, that he did not succeed as the  as the result apparently of some defect in the set himself (AOB, this apparent defect was due to sabotage on behalf of S.I.S. as they replaced a resistor of a too light type wattage and, when likely the set was repaired, which normally someone replaces a defect component by the same type which apparently being defect; but it will be destroyed because there should be used a more powerful component!)  It is, however, not easy to be certain exactly what happened for this date Snow's (Arthur Owens') correspondence with the Germans was carried under a business cover and consisted of letters allegedly referring to inventions, to business of the  Auerbach company (R232)   (R232return) and similar matters. It is wholly impossible for us, and perhaps now even impossible for Snow (Arthur Owens) himself, to detangle from these letters the genuine business content and the phrases  or paragraphs which referred to espionage.  Snow (Arthur Owens) was principally in correspondence with two addresses, that of a Dr. Wentzel  (S233)   (S233return)  and that of a firm of dealer by the name of Auerbach. (notice the foregoing links (R232) and (R232return)).   According to his own account the former was an electrical engineer particularly  interested in medical equipment, who took genuine commercial interest in Snow's (Arthur Owens') patent accumulator. The firm of Auerbach also dealt with electrical apparatus and similarly according to Snow (Arthur Owens)  conducted tests of his invention with satisfactory results.

            In August 1939 Snow (Arthur Owens) left England for Hamburg (via Belgium) together with a certain Lily (Bade, his girlfriend) an English woman of German extraction, with whom he has since been living and for whom he deserted his wife (Jessie) and family.  He also took with him to Hamburg a certain name made invisible an unemployed clerk, whom he clearly intended to recruit  for the German Service.  Snow Lily (Bade, his girlfriend) an English woman of German extraction, with whom he has since been living and for whom he deserted his wife and family. He also took with him to Hamburg a certain name made invisible  an unemployed clerkm whom he clearly intended to recruit for the German Service.  Snow returned with Lily (Bade) at the end of August and thereafter for a short while disappeared completely. he was not discovered again until September 4th when he telephoned to  Inspector name made invisible of Special Branch (at Scotland Yard, Whitehall) and made an appointment to see him at Waterloo Station. As war now broken out Inspector name made invisible took with him to this meeting a detention Order under DR 18B (AOB, strangely meant for Foreigners, albeit that Arthur Owens was regarded nevertheless as being British) which he served upon Snow (Arthur Owens) who was the taken into custody.  He there revealed that he had been living, since his return to England, with Lily (Bade, his girlfriend) at the flat occupied by name made invisible in Surbiton, where his transmitter was the the time concealed. Snow (Arthur Owens)   remained for a short while in Wandsworth Prison.   It was then proposed that his wireless set should be be used from the prison to re-establish contact with Germany under our (M.I.5) direction. (T234)  (T234return) Snow (Arthur Owens) rapidly accepted this proposal and the wireless set was installed in his (prison) cell.  After some difficulty in making contact the follow 'Must meet you in Holland messages was sent: 'Must meet you Holland at once. Bring other code. Radio town and hotel Wales ready'.    This message was explained by Snow (Arthur Owens) in the following way. he had been instructed by Ritter (Major, known also as the Doctor) that one of his principal in time of war would be the transmission of daily weather reports. He had also been told to discover the name and address of a reliable member of the Welsh Nationalist Party, an organisation which the Germans proposed to use if they could for the purpose of sabotage in South Wales.

            Later in September Snow (Arthur Owens) paid a visit to Rotterdam and there succeeded in making contact satisfactory with Ritter.  He returned from this visit with some fresh instructions and a quantity of miscellaneous information. Some  weeks later he returned to the Continent accompanied this time by (the Welsh) G.W. (Gwilym Williams) a retired Police inspector from Swansea, who had been nominated by us (M.I.5) as Snow's (Arthur Owens') contact in the Welsh national Party. (following the line: the enemy of my enemies are my friends)  Together G.W. and Snow (Arthur Owens) saw Ritter who was this time accompanied by a man known to them as the commander, who discussed at length with G.W. a project for shipping arms and explosives to south Wales by submarine where they were to be used for a major insurrection by the Welsh Nationalist Party.  This meeting also passed off successfully and Snow (Arthur Owens) returned → (page 8) →with money and some fresh instructions in the shape of microphotographs (microdots) reduced to about the size of a postage stamp.

KV 2/451-1, page 8 

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with money and some fresh instructions in the shape of microphotographs (microdots) reduced to about the size of a postage stamp. One of these photographs was in the form of a letter addressed to the agent Charlie, with whom Snow (Arthur Owens) was instructed to put himself in contact.  Charlie is of German origin and one of a family three brothers.  he himself acquired English nationality at birth. Of his two brothers, one is still resident in Germany and the other, who was staying with Charlie at the outbreak of war, was later interned and died in the "Arandora Star"   AOB: This likely isn't correct, because on the list of causalities found at: there is not found the name of an Mr. Eschborn. The Arandora Star was torpedoed on 2 July 1940; by U 47 (maybe still was the captain was Günter Prien; the same Captain of the famous Scapa Flow; of 14.01.1939. The two brothers (Charles Eschborn, the first name of his brother on board the Andora Star I could not trace on the web; but his brother Hans lived in Germany, throughout), had already come to notice in August 1939 when their address had been found in the possession of a certain Günter (Gunter) Raydt, who had himself come under suspicion.  Subsequently name of Charles Eschborn's brother been made invisible was arrested for a breach of the Aliens Regulations, and as a result of statements by him it had become clear that the two brothers had been recruited  by a certain Captain Dr. Hansen in Cologne in the summer of 1938. (AOB, not clear is - besides Charles in England, which brother was actually meant: British born Charles and/or his brother Hans in Germany, or the brother whom later was killed by torpedoed "Andora Star" accident, on 2 July 1940) Since they had both worked worked to some extent for the Germans, though Charles (Charlie) (PF 48283, KV 2/454) had only done so reluctantly under the treat of reprisals to his brother (Hans) in Germany. It later appeared that Dr. Hansen of Cologne (Köln) was in fact identical with Major Ritter (also known as Doctor Rantzau [5]) and there is little doubt that his object in putting Snow (Arthur Owens) into touch with Charlie (Charles Eschborn) was that the latter, who was an expert photographer, should be used by Snow (Arthur Owens) to develop the micrographs   (U235)   (U235return) which he was to receive and to reduce Snow's own reports to the same form for easy transmission to Germany.

            On the same visit to Brussels Snow (Arthur Owens) was informed by the Germans that he would for the future be paid by a woman resident in Bournemouth, and in fact during his absence in Brussels two letters had arrived for him, each containing £20, which were subsequently traced to a Mrs. Mathilde Krafft   (V236)    (V236return), now in Holloway Prison.

            So far, then, Snow's (Arthur Owens') activities had been from our point of view uniformly successful, since they had already resulted in the discovery of not less than three German agents. from the German point of view they had been equally satisfactory, since they supposed that Snow (Arthur Owens) was now established with a satisfactory sub-agent, Charlie, living near Manchester, a link through G.W. (Gwilym Williams) with promising scheme for sabotage in South Wales, a wireless set and a safe means of payment through Mrs. Krafft.

            In October Snow (Arthur Owens) and G.W. (Gwilym Williams) paid a visit together to Antwerp  (X236)   (X236return)   , where they again interview by Ritter and the Commander.  G.W. (Gwilym Williams) was given a little elementary instruction in simple methods of fire-raising and Snow (Arthur Owens)  was provided with some detonators concealed in a slab of wood.  G.W. (Gwilym Williams) was also provided with a cover address in Brussels, and it was anticipated that for the future he would communicate with the Germans to some degree independently of Snow (Arthur Owens).  This situation continued for some while with apparent success (G.W. was also controlled by M.I.5), though it gradually became clear that the Germans were losing interest in their Welsh sabotage scheme.  The reason for this, according to Snow himself, was that they did not like G.W. (Gwilym Williams), whom they considered to be too nervous for the work. In fact, it appears more probable that the insurrection in South Wales was designed to coincide with the Germans' invasion of this country (Operation Seeloewe) and that for this reason action was postponed until that moment, and in the end abandoned entirely.  Snow continued to transmit wireless messages almost daily and for some time paid further visits to the Continent for the purpose of  consultation with (Major) Ritter.   Nothing of very great interest happened at most of these meetings, except that at one of them Snow (Arthur Owens) was given by Ritter's secretary (Ritter future wife?) a postcard addressed to Eugene Horsfall @ Horsfall Ertz (F238)  (F238return), and unsatisfactory character in this country (England) who was certainly in the employ of the Germans in some minor capacity connected with propaganda. In the meantime Snow (Arthur Owens) himself had been established in London in a firm known as name made invisible  (connected with purchasing batteries).    His partner in this enterprise was a certain W.N. Rolph, a nominee of this office (M.I.5?).  In this capacity Snow (Arthur Owens) was in correspondence the Societé de Consignation et Affretement of Antwerp, a firm employed by the Germans as a cover   (Z237)     (Z237return).    It had been arranged that through that through this firm Snow (Arthur Owens) should presently receive a consignment of accumulators in which time bombs were to be concealed, but in the end this interesting project came to nothing.  Snow (Arthur Owens) did however receive, by the agency of two Mascar seaman who had been recruited for the Germans in Antwerp by the Indian Obed, who landed in Ireland as an agent, two spare valves for his wireless transmitter.

KV 2/451-1, page 9

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            During a meeting which Snow (Arthur Owens) had with Ritter (the Doctor) in Antwerp in April 1940 it had been suggested by Ritter that a further meeting should take place between them on a trawler in the North Sea (British operation Lamp) (AOB, this endeavour failed at the end).   Ritter said that that he had been much impressed by the ease with which smuggling was carried on the east Coast of England and he thought Snow (Arthur Owens) should have no difficulty in obtaining the use of a trawler for the purpose.  He would himself arrive either by submarine or aircraft and the real purpose of the meeting was to be to smuggle a new sug-agent, whom Snow (Arthur Owens) was to produce, into Germany, where he would undergo a thorough training in sabotage and espionage.  During May this extraordinary project came to a head and it became necessary for us to produce upon Snow's (Arthur Owens) behalf both the trawler   (D 238)     (D238return)  and the agent. The former was produced by arrangement with the Fisheries Board and the latter was discovered in the person of Biscuit (Sam McCarthy). This man, after a prolonged career of petty largely, dope smuggling and the confidence trick, had reformed and since acted as a capable and honest informer in criminal matters. He was accordingly introduced to Snow, can have been in no doubt but that Biscuit was acting as an agent of this office (M.I.5). It is important to emphasize this point in view of what happened later also because the case of Snow and Charlie had previously been run upon the basis that neither knew that the other was controlled, though it is clear that after a while both of them must have guessed this fact.

            On the 19th May Snow and Biscuit left together for Grimsby (notice bookmarks (D238) and (D238return) ↑↑  just before) in order to board the trawler.  On the way there unfortunately Biscuit formed the opinion from Snow's (Arthur Owens') behaviour and his conversation that he was acting genuinely in the interest of the Germans and would undoubtedly reveal his position as a controlled agent as soon as he met Major Ritter. Snow (Arthur Owens)  on the other hand appears to have been, for reasons which we cannot analyse, under the impression that Biscuit was a genuine German agent who would undoubtedly reveal his. Snow's (Arthur Owens')  ambiguous position when their meeting with Ritter (should) took place. As a acting genuinely in the German interest, and thereby redoubled Biscuit's suspicions. In this nightmare state of mind the two boarded the trawler and proceeded towards the rendezvous. On the evening of the 21st May, which was two days before the date fixed for the rendezvous, a plane cicled over the trawler and gave agreed recognition signal/ This only served to convince Biscuit of Snow's (Arthur Owens') treachery, since both the time and their position were not what had been previously arranged.  he therefore caused the trawler lights to be extinguished and the trawler to run home immediately, Snow being the while kept under guard in the cabin. On his return Snow (Arthur Owens) was searched and various documents relating to this office (B.2.a of M.I.5) which he ought not to have possessed wre found on him. Further investigations revealed that these had been given him by W.N. Rolph, who was himself short of money and had seen an opportunity of doing a profitable deal through Snow with the Germans on the side. When Rolph was taxed with this, his behaviour left no doubt of his guilt. An effort was made to retrieve the situation by dispatching a trawler with a new crew to correcting position of the rendezvous on the 23rd which was the actual night fixed for the meeting. As might have been expected, however, there was no sign of any enemy aircraft or submarine.  Fortunately, however, there was no fog and Snow (Arthur Owens) was subsequently able to represent to Ritter, apparently with success, that he had been at rendezvous at the right time and had missed (Major) Ritter as a result of the fog. Time and again the Services fell time and again in their own trap, translating minor fact as the proof of Arthur Owens' treasury. I would like to repeat the final judgement, once worded by Mr. J. H. Marriott but now also in a reversed sequence as those at M.I.5 have to let them judge by brain specialists: Mr. Marriott  pointed that: I am more than ever convinced that Snow's (Arthur Owens') is a case not for the Security Service, but for a brain specialist.

(Quoting from KV 2/450-2, page 67, date 3.4.41) AOB:   Maybe a better part of self-reflection would have prevented their apparent "tunnel visions"; they, after al, left a trace of quite poor personal judgements, believing (trusting the slightest indications against Arthur Owens instead of showing a superior kind of mind) AOB: this will not say, that the nucleus might have to be found, indeed, within Arthur Owens' mind, but what is historically disturbing, is, the entire lack of self-criticism (reflection) within the Services, during wartime considerations.

            AOB: this report neglect the fact that due to this trawler event, Arthur Owens had been arrested under (Alien) Order 18B on behalf of the Home Office. I admire this latter Ministry, myself, as they truly knew what legal means meant, a lacking quality within the Secret Services!      (H239)      (H239return)

                 After the North Sea episode there was, not unreasonably, some doubt as to Snow's bona fides.  These doubts were finally resolved in Snow's (Arthur Owens') favour, for it was clear that a great part was of the trouble had had its origin in a genuine misunderstanding between Snow (Arthur Owens) and Biscuit of each others motives and methods of work. (AOB: why does the history repeat within the same office of M.I.5, where in the Lisbon episode (February/ March 1941) also Celery (Walter Dicketts) reported back in London in a comparable manor about Arthur Owens; which resulted in a years-long-lasting-imprisonment at Dartmoor Prison!)

  Snow's (Arthur Owens') case was continued as before (after he had been imprisoned) and, since he had already told Ritter (the Doctor) in his wireless that he had recruited a new sub-agent in the person of Biscuit, it became necessary, since the meeting at sea had miscarried, to arrange some other means of contact.  It was therefore agreed that Biscuit should travel to Lisbon under the cover of a dealer in Portuguese wine. On the German side he had been instructed to put himself in touch with the Hotel Duas Nacoes, Rua Victoria (J240)  (J240return), which as we have learnt is entirely under control of the Germans.   Biscuit (Sam McCarthy) arrived in Lisbon on 24.7.40 and → (page 10) →put up at the hotel as instructed. In Lisbon he had a short meeting with (Major) Ritter (then named the Doctor) who had travelled from Germany to see him, but passed most of his (Biscuit's) time in Hans Duarte @ Doebler, one of the principal resident German agents in Lisbon (whom lived in Argentina, but was hampered to return due to the outbreak of War).

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→put up at the hotel as instructed. In Lisbon he had a short meeting with (Major) Ritter (then named the Doctor) who had travelled from Germany to see him, but passed most of his (Biscuit's) time in Hans Duarte @ Doebler, one of the principal resident German agents in Lisbon (whom lived in Argentina, but was hampered to return due to the outbreak of War).  The principle subject of conversation between Biscuit (Sam McCarthy was apparently able to explain away of saying that Snow had been at the rendezvous at the right time but had seen nothing.  Ritter confided to Biscuit that in his opinion Snow's work was failing off but that he had done excellent work in the past. He also told him that there was a South African waiting in Belgium to come to this country, where he would be dropped by parachute as an assistant or sub-agent to Snow (Arthur Owens). (AOB, maybe, it was pointed at the South-African boxer Robey Leibrandt, whom ultimately returned to South Africa by the French small sailing boat Kyloe  (PF 63905; KV 2/924 - KV 2/925) This concluded the main business of the meeting apart from the information and reports from Snow which Biscuit handed over, but during his stay in Lisbon, before Ritter's arrival, Biscuit also did one or two odd jobs for Doebler. Among these, it is interessting to note, acting as intermediary in the case of an agent, a certain René Mezenin, a steward on the American Clipper, who apparently worked well for the Germans and was subsequently convicted in the Duquesne round up. Biscuit returned to London on 21.8.41 bringing with him a further wireless set for Snow (Arthur Owens) in a suitcase which was apparently intended to be smuggled through the customs. He was also provided with a further questionnaire and microphotographs and some U$ 3000. (AOB, Biscuit's behaviour in Lisbon was failure, as he drunk once    (K240)   (K240return), or more often, too much alcohol;   and Major Ritter's pointed later that he didn't trust Sam McCarthy, that Sam McCarthy had been drunk in an excessive manner  (M241)   (M241return) which is unprecedented in Lisbon!)

            After Biscuit's return, Snow's (Arthur Owens') case continued normally. he received and transmitted reports both from Charlie (Charles Eschborn) and G.W. (Welshman Gwilym Williams).  The latter's direct means of communication with the Germans of course broken down with the invasion of the Low Countries (including France), as he had only had a cover address in Brussels.  Biscuit, however, was himself to some point in direct communication with the Germans since he had provided in Lisbon with a cover address and instructions for writing in secret ink.  The next important incident in Snow's (Arthur Owens') career was the arrival of the parachutist Summer (Gösta Caroli, German cover-name Nilberg) (PF 53123; KV 2/60) and the part which he played therein. Summer was a Swede Gösta Caroli.   As a young man he had followed a number of trades and finally failed disastrously with a silver fox farm name made invisible near Upsala.  he then wandered at large in Europe for some while, supporting himself as an itinerant (wandering) artist and journalist. In this condition he fell in at the end of 1938 with a member of the Hamburg (Abwehr) Stelle and was recruited by him for work in England.  He made two trips to England, from the second of which he returned to Sweden on 4.12.39.  While he was here he appears to have been mainly concerned, while ostensibly acting as the representative of various Swedish papers, in collecting economic and Air Force information in the Midlands.  He says himself that his material was drawn for the most part from the guide books and the Press.  After his return to Sweden Summer (Gösta Caroli) (Gøsta Caroli?) seems to have made an attempt to shake free from the Germans. In this he was unsuccessful, and in July of the following year found him in Hamburg being trained in Morse and similar subjects at Stoeckelhorn II, together with Tate (Wulf Schmidt; one of Major Ritter's personal best friends) and under the same instructors.  On 6.9.40 he was dropped by parachute near Denton, Northants, with instructions to report on the area Oxford-Northhampton-Birmingham, with particular reference to air raid damage in Birmingham itself.  He was arrested within a few hours of his landing and thereafter his story falls into two parts: what actually happened to him and what the Germans believe have occurred.

            From the German view, Summer, who had been injured himself slightly on landing, spent the ten days after his arrival hiding in the open between Oxford and Birmingham. Then, as the weather was bad, he proposed to find a shelter for himself by posing as a Swedish refugee.  The Germans voted this idea idea and instead instructed Snow (Arthur Owens) by wireless to make contact with Summer (Gösta Caroli) and arrange for his accommodation.  On 17.9.40 Snow (Arthur Owens) despatched Biscuit who met Summer by arrangement at the High Wycombe railway station.  He then notionally (virtually) took Summer with him to London, put him up in his flat and took steps to see that the seaman's papers which he had brought with him were put into order.  The Germans were told via Snow's (Arthur Owens') transmitter that Summer had fallen ill as a result of his time in the open and being nursed by Biscuit. By 27.9.40 the Germans were told that Summer had recovered and that as his papers were now in order he was ready to set out once more on his own.  They → (page 11)

KV 2/451-1, page 11

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→gave instructions that he should be told to work the area London-Colchester-Southend. By 23.10.40 he was able to announce on his transmitter that he had succeeded in establishing himself in lodgings to the south of Cambridge. (AOB, all the time he was controlled by the British Secret Service, throughout) There, as far as the Germans knew he remained until the following January.  There was no further contact between him and Snow's (Arthur Owens') (virtual) organisation except that he had Biscuit's (Sam McCarthy's) address for use necessary and once received a payment of £200 from him.  At the end of January 1941 Summer's (Gösta Caroli) transmitter went suddenly off the air and the Germans were told through Snow (Arthur Owens)  that Biscuit (Sam McCarthy) had received a letter from him to the effect that he was under suspicion by the Police and had taken advantage of the seaman's papers to cut and run.  he had left his wireless set in the cloakroom at Cambridge station, whence on the German's instructions it was later retrieved by Biscuit (Sam McCarthy).

            The true story was different.  After his capture Summer (Gösta Caroli) was accommodated at Camp 020 but later released under our control so that he might operate his transmitter.  Later it was necessary to return him for a short while to Camp 020 as it had become clear from his conversation that he had not told the truth about his previous career in England.  Subsequently, (after a vain (unsuccessful) attempt at suicide) he was released again and installed with a guard in a house near Hinxton.  Re remained there until the end of January 1941 when he made an ill-advised attempt to escape, was recaptured and returned for the rest of the time (the war) to Camp 020 where he still remains. (AOB, this report does not contain a reference date, but we may consider it before May 1945) His wireless transmissions were broken off in the circumstances described above.

            In the meantime there had been further interesting developments in the connection with Snow's (Arthur Owens')  other sub-agents Charlie (Charles Eschborn)  and G.W. (the Welshman Gwilym Williams). As early as the end of August 1940 the Germans had announced their intention of sending a wireless operator to assist Charlie (Charles Eschborn) in Manchester.  A house was accordingly prepared for this man's reception in which was installed the transmitter which Biscuit (Sam McCarthy)   had brought back from Lisbon (August 1940).  In the end, however, this man, like the South African of whom Biscuit (Sam McCarthy) had spoken previously, never, arrived.  Exactly what became of these two agents remains obscure, though according to Snow's (Arthur Owens') wireless traffic the South African was dropped at some time during the last week of August and Charlie's (Charles Eschborn's) wireless operator on the night of 15th - 16th December (1940).   So far as we know, both these men, if they were dropped, came down in the sea or at any rate in circumstances which left no trace of their arrival/ It is just possible that the south African who landed with Obed in Ireland on 7.7.40.  It had certainly been suggested, both in Snow's  (Arthur Owens)  traffic and during one of his earlier meetings with (Major) Ritter, the best way to introduce a man into England might be via Eire (Republic of Ireland). If either Tributh or Gartner (Gaertner / Gärtner) was the South African, then the Abwehr staff work must have been more than usually bad.  On the 17th of July (1940), that is ten days after the Tributh party's arrival in Iere and asking for information about what identity cards and other papers were necessary.

            A similar misfortune appears to have overcome the three saboteurs whom the Germans suggested that they should sent to assist G.W. (Gwilym Williams) in Swansea. Their impending arrival was first spoken of in July (1940) and and thereafter continued to be referred to (though with some discrepancies as to the number of people involved) until 26th October, when the Germans announced that a man for Swansea would arrive in about a fortnight and would make contact with G.W. (Gwilym Williams)  at the latter's address.  No one did so, but on 12.11.40 that is a little over a fortnight later, three Cubans - Robles, Martinez and Hechevarria - did arrive, overloaded with sabotage equipment, on the fishing smack Josephine at Fishguard, It is not unlikely, though we have never proved it, that these were in fact three men intended for G.W. (Gwilym Williams)  In the meanwhile, however, one actual emissary arrived in the person of the Spanjard Del Pozo (Miguel) he got British cover-name  Pogo since, who reached England on 27.9.40 and shortly after his arrival addressed a letter to G.W. (the Welshman Gwilym Williams), in  which he mentioned the password which priviously been agreed upon in connection with the men who were to come to Swansea. When he heard this Snow (Arthur Owens) sent a wireless message message asking for further details and was told that Del Pozo (the latter's real name) was a member of the commander's propaganda and sabotage organisation and was carrying money intended for Snow.  On 11.10.40 a meeting took place between G.W. (Gwilym Williams) and Del Pozo at which the latter handed over → (page 11) → the sum of nearly £1000??. from then until the time of Del Pozo's final departure at the beginning of February 1941 (shortly thereafter Arthur Owens will meet Del Pozo (Pogo) in Lisbon/Estoril) G.W. (Gwilym Williams)  also substituted to Del Pozo detailed reports of the activities in Wales and the information which had previously been passed through Snow (Arthur Owens).


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 → the sum of nearly £1000??. from then until the time of Del Pozo's final departure at the beginning of February 1941 (shortly thereafter Arthur Owens will meet Del Pozo (Pogo) in Lisbon/Estoril) G.W. (Gwilym Williams)  also substituted to Del Pozo detailed reports of the activities in Wales and the information which had previously been passed through Snow (Arthur Owens). The exact position of del Pozo in the German organisation is slightly ambiguous. As was mentioned above he was said to be an agent of the commander and therefore presumably  an Abteilung II (= sabotage) man,  but G.W. (Gwilym Williams) was also instructed through Snow (Arthur Owens) that Del Pozo's position must have been a dual one in that he was working simultaneously for the commander and for Alcazar without the latter being informed of all the facts.

            In the meantime Snow (Arthur Owens) himself, had been making arrangements with the Germans for a further meeting with (Major) Ritter, this time to take place in Lisbon, and had undertaken to bring with him two further sub-agents or, as he preferred to say, "side-kicks", one for instructions in Germany and one for a verbal consultation in Lisbon.  While these arrangements were still under discussion he had been indirectly concerned with the arrival or presence in England of still further Germans agents.  In the first place he had been asked to supply a series of names and numbers from N.R. identity cards and had dome so.  These names subsequently reappeared on the cards of Tate (Wolf Schmidt), Vera Eriskon ( and others.  He had also been asked to locate and assist if he could the agent Jakobs, who was dropped on the night of 31.1.41, and injured himself on landing . It is possible that Jakobs may really have been intended to contact Charlie (Charles Eschborn in Manchester), for his arrival followed by a few weeks an (broadcast?) announcement by the Germans that they had a new man ready to drop at Manchester as a substitute for the one who had been lost (Jakobs, see hyperlink before the last one)  The next incident was that on 24.1.41 Snow (Arthur Owens) was informed that a German agent in England had acquired valuable information about developments in infra-red which the Germans wished Snow (Arthur Owens) to bring with him to Lisbon (February/March 1941).  Arrangements were made for this agent's reports to be received at Biscuit's flat (14 Craven Hill) in London before Snow's departure, but once more no one appeared (N243)  (N243return). Finally on 7.2.41 shortly before his departure, Snow was instructed to send £100 to agent Tate (German name Wulf Dietrich Schmidt, whom was one of Ritter's best friends), in the same name under which the latter was actually living (AOB, his German cover-name was Leonard) by post to a Poste Restante address.  he despatched the money four days later in a registered envelope.

            On 15.2.41 Snow (Arthur Owens) left by air for Lisbon, having been proceeded a fortnight earlier by the agent Celery (Walter Dicketts) (AOB, incorrectly suggested here, that he arrived also a fortnight earlier, which wasn't the case, because Walter Dicketts left from Liverpool by a ships convoy, heading first for Gibraltar and from there arriving at Lisbon, consequently arriving quite long after did Arthur Owens) one of the two "side-kicks" referred to above.  Celery (Walter Dicketts) was a nominee of this office (M.I.5) with whom, however, Snow had some time before struck up an acquaintance on his own (in a pub).  Celery (Walter Dicketts) had served during the last war (WW I, 1914-18) in a branch of air intelligence but since then had shown a less satisfactory record and had been involved after his return to civil life in a numerous of dubious financial dealings. He was therefore able to represent to the Germans that he had a grudge (resentment) against this country in as much his record made it impossible for him to regain his commission in the Air Force. As he was an observant able man with a fluent knowledge of German he was regarded as being particular suitable to undergo a course training in Germany, from which we expected that he might bring back valuable information. Unfortunately these hopes were largely disappointed. We still do not know precisely what happened after Snow (Arthur Owens) arrived in Lisbon, but we can at least be certain that during his visit he compromised himself in some way with the Germans and that his career as a double agent came to an abrupt close.

(AOB, this might indicate that this paper had been made before they captured Major Ritter in May 1946. Secondly, an endemic lack of self-critics, as after Owens' return he gave them (T.A. Robertson and others) the key to what did go wrong, and what was truly caused within M.I.5!  The very fact - never discussing within the Service - as far as it remained in the according files: Owens arrived in Lisbon with an airplane, for which M.I.5 had managed a priority seat! But there were already existing quite long waiting-lists. How, could an individual obtain, on such short notice, a priority seat without official pushing? Of course, the Germans knew about this very fact and, consequently, they drew their conclusions. Was it so difficult for those Crown Servants to acknowledge that they created Arthur Owens' blow themselves? This is why I have to refer to these facts time- and-again! I consider it an ill kind of "Tunnel vision"! 

 By his own account Snow met Ritter on the evening of his first day in Lisbon and was accused by him of working under British control.  Snow sayd that since he saw from Ritter's expression that the game was up he admit the charge and said that he had been detected some three (two?) months previously and had since worked as a double agent. Ritter's reaction was to propose an elaborate scheme by which Snow (Arthur Owens) should return to still in the capacity of a double agent, but should indicate to him by certain code words inserted into his (W/T) traffic what of it was true and what false.  All this had occurred before Celery's (Walter Dicketts') arrival in Lisbon, which was a little delayed since the ship on which he sailed was some days over due.   (AOB, In Ritter's book: Deckname Dr. Rantzau, of 1972 [5] Nilolaus Ritter explained that he trusted Arthur Owens' personally because of their longstanding friendship since 1936) Almost immediately after his arrival he also saw Ritter, though by his (Walter Dicketts') own account without having learnt from Snow (Arthur Owens) of what had → (page 13)→ passed, and then was agreed that he should travel into Germany as had been arrange beforehand.

KV 2/451-1, page 13

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→ passed, and then was agreed that he should travel into Germany as had been arrange beforehand. (AOB: Walter was treated by the Germans extremely luxury and wasn't threatened at all; but there must have existed already before they went to Portugal an apparent animosity between both Arthur Owens and Walter Dicketts, because during their mutual interrogations Walter, at some stage, came up with private details between Arthur Owens and his girlfriend Lily Bade with whom Arthur lived as man-and-wife and had the baby Jean Louise, in such an aggressive manner that already may be consider jealousy or even hatred existed from Walter Dicketts towards Arthur Owens. Do we have since to trust Walter Dicketts's statements against Arthur Owens? (M243)   (M243return)  This he did in company with one of Ritter's assistants who escorted him to  Hamburg, where he was subject to the closest interrogation about his past and present activities.  After some three weeks returned without mishap. (AOB, too briefly delt with: Walter Dicketts stayed in Hamburg in the best 5 Star Hotel in Town Vier Jahreszeiten; was free to go everywhere. Thereafter he went to Berlin where he again was lodged in a the 5 Star Hotel Adlon!). He had not, however, been given the training for which presumably he went but had instead been provided with a quantity of propaganda material and some tendentious information about air raid damage in Hamburg, He rejoined Snow (Arthur Owens) and the two then came back to England. Snow (Arthur Owens) bringing with him a further supply of detonators and some £10.000 in cash. On what footing they arrived it is hard to say, for Snow's (Arthur Owens') account of the proceedings in Lisbon was in the highest degree confused and gave every impression of being untruthful. Even if it were true he had certainly permitted Celery (Walter Dicketts) to go on with what had by then become an extremely dangerous mission without warning (this fact was mainly caused by a great extent of "tunnel vision" within M.I.5 itself, as it couldn't been proven!) him of what the true position was, Snow (Arthur Owens) himself was therefore detained (again under Alien Order 18B) and in his own case, which of course involved those of Celery (Walter Dicketts), Charlie (Charles Eschborn)  and Biscuit (Sam McCarthy), was brought to a rapid end. The last (W/T) message sent by his transmitter were to the effect that he was dangerously ill in hospital.

            The consequences of this breakdown were not quite so serious as had at first been anticipated.  Snow's (Arthur Owens' revelations has apparently had no adverse effect upon Tate (Wulf Dietrich Schmidt), though logically they should have done since he had made a payment to him within the period during which he had admitted to having been under control. Similarly G.W. (Gwilym Williams)  was presently able to re-open his contact with the Germans or at least with the organisation of Alcazar de Velasco, which, as we now know, passes its information direct to the Germans.  After a suitable interval G.W. (Gwilym Williams) approached Segundo, the porter at the Spanish Embassy, who had previously acted as a go-between between him and del Pozo (British Pogo),  Through Segundo, G.W. (Gwilym Williams) was eventually introduced to Louis Calvo, and from June 1941 until the latter's arrest continued to see him periodically to receive money from him and to make to him reports which he had previously given to del Pozo (Pogo). As far as we can tell Calvo did not at the time (whatever he may have said after his arrest) entertain any suspicious about G.W. (the Welshman Gwilym Williams) bona fides and certainly forwarded his reports to the Spanish masters. It is, however, still not clear whether this must necessarily be taken to mean that in the Germans' eyes at any rate G.W. (Gwilym Williams) was for some mysterious reason compromised by the overthrow of Snow (Arthur Owens).

            With the arrest of Louis Calvo in March 1942 the Snow case in all its many ramifications came finally to an end. Although his own career had ended more or less disastrously Snow's (Arthur Owens') case had not been by any means unprofitable to us.  he had given us at the beginning of the war information which formed the basis of our knowledge of the Hamburg Stelle (Abwehrstelle-X) and which was of considerable value at the time when that Stelle was the one principally concerned with work against this country.  Similarly he had through Biscuit (Sam McCarthy) and latterly through Celery (Walter Dicketts) provided valuable information about the German organisation in Lisbon.  It is true no doubt that without Snow's assistance we should nevertheless have detected all of the agents who we did detect, with the possible exception of Mrs. Krafft (Bournemouth), but still the part which Snow (Arthur Owens') played in these early cases, both directly in the way making payments to other agents and indirectly in that he provided the information upon which the Germans constructed their false papers, shows that he was then regarded as the linchpin (key-player) of the Abwehr organisation in England.  Consequently we were able by study of his case to form an impression of the Abwehr's methods of working which has been of incomparable value since.



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                    Extract for No.:    PF 45241                                                    Name:        Snow (Arthur Owens)

                    Original in File 62876 v.3 (Ritter's file series No. 3)               

                    Original from;  C.C.G. (B)E, Bad Oeyenhausen

                    Extracted on:    31.5.46

From C.C.(B)E forwarding CSDIC(WEA) Final Interrogation Report on Obstlt. Nikolaus Fritz Adolf Ritter.

AOB: the attached negative copy is of such poor quality that we have, sadly, to skip it. As a 'Deux ex Machina' an ominous report will appear in Chapter 10c (not yet ready)

KV 2/451-1, page 19       (minute 1795z)



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                    Extract for File No.    PF 45241

                Original File No. PF 600,672  V.2    Kapt.z.See Herbert Wichmann (during to almost all the wartime years - the Leiter of Ast-Hamburg)                    Receipt Date   13.8.45

                Original in Camp 020 (Herbert Wichmann noticed after the war: the threatening culture within Camp 020)

                    Wichmann reported an English airman of the last war (1914-1918) "Celery"  (Walter Dicketts), whom he now thinks might have been known to Ast Hamburg (Walter Dicketts spent quite a long time in Hamburg, in March 1941) as "(Dick?) Brown" - this man had something to do with a man known as "Der Kleine" whose name he now recalls as being " Johnny O'Brien"  came to Hamburg in the summer of 1940 (Celery stayed for some time in Hamburg in March 1941) (Arthur Owens (Snow) visited Hamburg since 1936 quite regularly) via Portugal and Spain, stayed a week and then (via Berlin) returned to Lisbon and thereafter to London again.  A few month later Mr ??  Brown ??? (Celery) was again in Lisbon?? and met there from Hptm. Major Ritter's Staff I L, and was to have been brought to Hamburg again but he left Lisbon without warning by plane to England early one morning. (Herbert Wichmann headed the entire Ast Hamburg during almost the entire war , he might be confused a bit and mixes up Biscuit (Sam McCarthy) with Walter Dicketts (Celery))

                Wichmann states that this sudden disappearance created considerable speculation in the minds of the staff of Ast Hamburg, which is the main reason why Wichmann knows anything about this case.

(AOB, In Ritter's Book Deckname Dr. Rantzau [5], he tells that "Walter Dicketts, albeit that he did not know his real name, disappeared in Madrid, whatever the confusion, there might have existed a link, maybe within another time-frame).

(AOB, it is quite apparent, that leaders of major divisions quite often knew nothing of the actual daily occurrences; they have been mainly engaged more in organisational matters, than that they were involved in the daily details of their various sections.

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            D.G. through D.B.

                    Snow (Arthur Owens) was released from detention (we enter now the the final stages of the war) at Dartmoor in August last (this letter being written on 25.1.45; hence August last must have been in August 1944) At the time of his release we recognised that he would be without resources and would have some difficulty in finding employment, and that in consequence we should, for some time at any rate, have to be responsible for his maintenance.  Moreover, we undertook to the Home Office (This Ministry provided on the demand of M.I.5 Arthur Owens' (Alien!) detention Order 18B) that we would be so responsible.

                    In the event Snow (Arthur Owens) was not contrived to find himself any employment, and we have had to maintain him ever since.  The actual sum which we have expected is £215.

                    I do not consider that Snow (Arthur Owens) has made made any very serious attempt to find himself a job, and I am satisfied that so long as he feels, as he does, that we shall look after him he will be content to drift along without making any effort. In fairness to him I think that it ought to be said that, having regard to his age - he is nearly 50 - and to the fact that throughout the war he has had no proper employment, he may be for all practical purpose virtually un-employable, except in the one job of which he has and recent experience, namely as an agent, and for this he is for a variety of reasons no longer suitable.

                                        In the event Snow (Arthur Owens) has not contrived to find himself any employment, and we have had to maintain him ever since. The actual sum which we have expended is £215.

                                        I do not consider that Snow (Arthur Owens) has made any very serious attempt to find himself a job, and I am satisfied that so long as he feels, as he does, that we shall look after him he will be content to drift along without making any effort. In fairness to him I think that it ought to be said that, having regard to his age - he is nearly 50 - and to the fact that throughout the war he has had no proper employment, he may be for all practical virtually un-employable, except in the one job of which he has any recent experience, namely as an agent and for this he is for a variety of reasons no longer suitable.

                                        I am making one more attempt to find work for him   quite many words may have been made invisible but  I am doubtful whether anything will come of this.  In the meantime I feel that the time has come when Snow (Arthur Owens) should be given to understand that he can no longer to us for support, and must stand on his own feet.

                                        I should like on parting with Snow (Arthur Owens) to pay him a lump sum, so that he is not cast on the world without means, and the figure for which he should like sanction is the sum of £500.  The intelligence dividend which we received from the conduct of his case is impossible to express in terms of money, but it is a large one, and in addition the conduct of this case put into our hands the sum in cash of £13,850. We do not know with accuracy  how much money Snow (Arthur Owens) retained for himself by direct appropriation from the sums paid by the Germans, but the payments and expenses which we made amounted to less than £4,000, with the results that on a pure financial basis alone the case has been profitable to us.


A.D.B. (Mr. D.G. White??)        24.1.45                    Sgd. T.A. Robertson (TAR)  Lt. Colonel)

KV 2/451-1, page 24

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                    As arranged, Lieut-Colonel Cussen (Home Office?) and I (Major L.J. Burt (B.5.) saw Snow (Arthur Owens) on the 6th March, 1945, at Room 055, and whilst appreciating his past services, suggested that the time had come when it was questionable whether he could be of further assistance to us.

                    Colonel Cussen said it was desirable that he should understand the importance of secrecy in connection with the work he had been doing, and pointed out the penalties involved under the Official Secrets Act if he should be foolish enough to write his reminiscences or discuss his work with any unauthorised person.

                    A copy of the Official Secrets Act was produced by Colonel Cussen who explained the appropriate section applicable to his case.  In acknowledging that he had read the Act and it had been explained to him, Snow (Arthur Owens) signed the copy of the official Secrets Act, which is attached.

                    In answer to certain questions he intimated that he considered he had been fairly treated and had no complaints to offer. I (Major Cussen) then said that it had been decided to give him a gratuity of £500 which it was hoped would assist to establish himself in some future employment.  I handed him the cheque for £500 against his attached acknowledgement.  he appeared particularly pleased and said that he did not expect it and in all circumstances felt that he had been generously treated.

KV 2/451-1, page 25

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D.B. (contd)

            He intimated that he intended investing money  the rest of sentence being made invisible.

            I gave him to understand that it was very desirable that he should completely dissociate himself from this department but if at any time he should want to contact us, which was most unlikely, he should communicate with me personaly and no one else.

            B.5.   14.3.45                    L.J. Burt (Major)

KV 2/451-1, page 30      (minute 1730a) 

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            I (Mr. J.H. Marriott) collected Snow yesterday morning from Dartmoor and brought him up to London and installed him in name made invisible. I had very little conversation with him (Arthur Owens), and apart trivialities limited myself to telling him that when we learnt that he was to be released (AOB: apparently on behalf of the Home Office, whom also provided the (Alien) Order 18B by which means it was only possible to detain someone legally) it had occurred to us that he would probably have nowhere to go, and that in those circumstances you had thought that he might be grateful for temporary hospitality while he was casting round for something to do and somewhere to go.  In point of fact, as I learnt from the deputy Governor, Snow (Arthur Owens) had assumed that we should be taking him away from Dartmoor and looking after him, and in consequence not only was Snow (Arthur Owens) not at all surprised to see me (Mr. J.H. Marriott), but he scarily showed any gratitude for your consideration.  I observed that among the possessions which were delivered to him at the Prison was £2.10s in cash, and I therefore neither offered him money nor made any reference to it.  I did tell him that his son  (Robert) was being released, but I did not tell him, because I did not know, when this released would take place, nor did I give him any indication as to what we proposed to do with Owens Junior.

            Incidentally Snow (Arthur Owens) asked if I knew where Lily (Bade; his former girlfriend) was, stating that what he really wanted to know was the whereabouts of the child (Jean Louise), but I told him, truthfully, that I had no idea of where she was.

            Snow (Arthur Owens) has no identity card or ration book, nor was anything known about them at Dartmoor.  Snow (Arthur Owens) states that his identity card was taken from him at Stafford, but that this was a card in the name of his alias name made invisible I will attend this point.


B.1.a.   1.9.44                Sgd. J.H. Marriott.

KV 2/451-1, page 31     (minute 1723?)

AOB: please notice that the next reference once had been addressed before the foregoing report. As all KV 2/xxx serials apart from the according minute references, all are running with increasing PDF numbers backwards in time.

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                                                                                        12th August 

            Dear Pannall,

                    I think you should know for your private information, but not for communication to Snow (Arthur Owens), that for a variety of reasons I am recommending to the Home Office that both Snow (Arthur Owens) and his son (Robert / Roby) should be released from detention.  I think that this recommendation will be accepted, and if that is so I shall be sending one of my officers (Mr. Marriott) down to Dartmoor in order to take Snow (Arthur Owens) away and offer him certain assistance while he looks around for suitable employment. I am told that if the revocation order is made it is likely to be available within the next week, but I will give you as much advance notice as possible.

Yours sincerely,


T.A. Robertson


The Governor

H.M. Prison,


AOB: not every letter or reference is pleasant to digest; because humans can fail; I therefore have skipped some.

KV 2/451-1, page 34      (minute 1920a)

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            Home Office.

                    We think that the time has come when we can recommend the release both of this and (Robert Owens) and of his father, Snow (Arthur Owens).

                    We have considered whether we should recommend the imposition of any, and what, restrictions on either of them, and have come to the conclusion that it is not at present necessary to do so.  In the special circumstances of the father's case, we shall wish to keep in touch with him on his release, and to help both him (Arthur Owens) and his son (Robert Owens) to settle down in some suitable employment.  We expect that both of them will accept such assistance gratefully, and it would be oly in the unlikely event of one of them proving recalcitrant and attempting to cause serious difficulties that we should feel obliged to recommend the making of a restriction order.

                    Likely part of sentence have been made invisible Snow Junior  (Owens Junior) is probably unfit for military service, but in any event it is eminently desirable that there should be no risk of his falling into the hands of the Germans, and we will therefore take steps to ensure that he is not called up.

                    If it is decided that these men need no longer remain in detention, we should wish to make special arrangements for their actual release, and should be grateful if the orders might therefore be sent here in the first instance, so that we may arrange for their service. It would also be a great convenience if Snow Junior (Robert Owens) could be transferred from the Isle of Man to Brixton Prison, so that his release could be effected in London.

                    A copy of this minute is enclosed, for you file for Snow (Arthur Owens).

M.I.5.     8.8.44            L.S. Hale

KV 2/451-1, page 57

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            Mr. Hale,


                    I should be very much like to arrange for the release of both Snow (Arthur Owens) and his son (Robert Owens) before the end of hostilities. They are both, as you know, detained under (Alien Order) 18B. Snow (Arthur Owens) is at Dartmoor and his son (Robert Owens) is in the Isle of man.

                    Since his internment in Dartmoor, Snow (Arthur Owens) has been of considerable use to the Office (M.I.5) in furnishing bits of information which has picked up from fellow internees about their past activities.  He was also partly responsible for bringing to our notice the leakage of information which had occurred from Camp WX in the Isle of Man and which lead to the enquiry which subsequently took place at Dartmoor some months ago.

                    Information has also been received from other reliable quarters pointing towards the fact that on his last visit to Lisbon Snow (Arthur Owens) did not in fact tell the Germans that his case was under control. (AOB: please be careful with what is expressed here, because Ritter confirmed what happened in Lisbon, when he was interrogated in May 1946 at Camp 020).  (S250)  (S250return) It has further been stated that after his return from Lisbon to the U.K. Dr. Rantzau (Major Ritter), who was responsible for running his case in Hamburg, was sacked from Abwehr owing to the fact that the case had broken down. (AOB: again M.I.5 itself was the source of the blown - because they supplied Arthur Owens with a priority seat on an airline from Bristol to Lisbon on 14th of February 1941; whereas there existed a waiting list; a fact noticed by the Germans and their "Johnny" was confronted with! Rantzau (Major Ritter) a very good job in Brazil but as soon as the case went wrong he was despatched to North Africa, a fact that was of course known to us from most secret sources (R.S.S. /RSS intercepts; decrypted at Bletchley Park)

                    Neither Snow (Arthur Owens) nor his son (Robert Owens)  are know considered by B.1.a to be a potential menace to the security of this country.

B.1.a.  13.1.44                Sgd T.A. Robertson (TAR)    (Lt.-Colonel)

Something curious jumping backwards in time

KV 2/451-2, page 61 + 62      (minute 1482a)   Snow combined with some of 64067 Hans Heino Lips Ast-X.

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                    After my visit to him (Arthur Owens) between 7.4.42 and 10.4.42, Snow (Arthur Owens) was given a map of Hamburg and requested to mark on it the offices or houses with which he was familiar as being places at which he had had dealings with the German Secret Service.  He marked in all four places: one at the corner of Steindamm and Grosse Allee, one at the corner of Grosse Bleichen and Bleichen Adolphs, one at the end of the of the Jungfernstieg, were new addressed not used by Snow (Arthur Owens) as cover addresses and not reported upon from other sources.  The office in (at) the Jungfernstieg, however, is from Snow's (Arthur Owens') description presumably 48, which did use as a cover address.

                    Snow (Arthur Owens) gave the following descriptions of the offices concerned:

"Number 1:    office consists of one room and a small anteroom, entrance door fitted with one Yale and one double-action locks. Furniture composed of cabinet, table and three chairs and telephone. The office is situated on the fourth floor reached by stairs and lift, this lift works continuously and has no doors (known as: Paternoster) (nowadays obsolete but quite exiting!) entrance to building is by six or eight stone steps from pavements.  Persons met there were (the Dr.) (Major Ritter), Miss Busch, Schneider, Miss Kruger (Krüger) and believe Dr. Lawrence (Lorenz) (Hans Heino Lips; KV 2/756, PF64067)

Number 2:    entrance to this office one step, then small hall and two more steps. Office on fourth floor reached by stairs and two setts of lifts as in number 1 (type Paternoster).  Entrance hall and staircases fitted with white tiles fitted as pictures.  Office doors two locks, single room with small anteroom, provided with water and sink, believed used for photographic work. Furniture consists of coat-stands, cabinets, two table, for chairs? two telephones.  Persons met there were: Dr. (=Major Ritter), Miss Busch, Miss Kruger (Krüger), Schneider, Lawrence (Lorenz!) (Hans Lips KV 2/756?) , Thieler (Thiele) (Werner Max Trautmann, Ii = Funkstelleleiter), Bon, man from Gestapo, man in plain uniform, three men from Berlin including one professor.

Number 3:    Office entrance through a kind of ware house filled with packing-cases, then one flight of stairs with more cases then one door entrance to hall well and expensively furnished, three rooms leading off this hall, was in one room, large expensively equipped and full of pictures of naval officers and ships, Persons → (page 62) → met there: Dr. (= Major Ritter), Dr. Thieler (= Ii Werner Trautmann) and two other men.

KV 2/451-2, page 62

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Number 4:    Private mansion in own grounds, appears to have twenty rooms, three floors, rooms very large, extremely expensively furnished, marble statues, immense grand pianos, very thick and beautiful carpets etc. (AOB, a formerly Jewish owned property?). Spent afternoon there for tea. People met: Dr. (= Major Ritter), Miss Busch, Thieler (Ii Trautmann), Bon and two army officers from Berlin etc. Goebbels has stayed there.  House is under control of two deaf old maids (have seen them)".

B.1.a.    12.5.42                                            Sgd. J.M.A. Gwyer.


KV 2/451-3, page 8      (minute 1472k)

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Snow's report on the Hamburg Stelle.

                    Snow (Arthur Owens) gave me (Gwyer) the following account of the organisation of the Hamburg Stelle as it was known to him.

                    When he was first recruited he dealt only with Sanders (an alias) and Dr. Rantzau (Major Ritter), who was apparently the head of I Marine (I M; Navy section of Referat I).  Sanders was, however, the man who dealt with the day-to-day details of Snow's (Arthur Owens') case. It appears that he was either the head of or connected with the section (Referat) I L.  In or about February 1937 Snow (Arthur Owens) paid a visit to Hamburg during which he met for the first time Dr. Rantzau (Major Ritter), who told him (Arthur Owens) that he (Major Ritter) had taken over the the work of Sanders of whom apparently he had non too high an opinion.  Thereafter all Snow's dealings were with Dr. Rantzau (Major Ritter).  Snow (Arthur Owens) understood the Rantzau (Major Ritter) was the head of of I Luft but that he was in fact superior to Dr. Baecker and Dr. Lorenz (Hans Heino Lips, PF 64067; KV 2/756), who were the heads (Referatsleiter) of I M (Marine/Navy) and I H (Army) respectively. next in importance was a certain Dr. Thiesen (Werner Trautmann, Ii Leiter W/T communications of Ast Hamburg; PF 602699, KV 2/2751) whose headquarters were normally in Berlin (AOB, I highly doubt, but Trautmann travelled a lot over the German controlled Continent).  Snow (Arthur Owens) understood that this man occupied, but that he was in control of the eastern of the Eastern area whereas Rantzau (Major Ritter) controlled the Western area, which included England and the United States. (AOB, we must consider that Owens' understanding is incorrect. Trautmann was, by the way, already before the war a Radio HAM, and he dealt with the technical aspects of W/T communications; his function designation was Ii; the Ast's W/T communication site was called Domaene / Domäne, in Wohldorf)

(AOB: there existed sections (Referate):  Heer Ost and Heer West, but this had not been maintained in a strict manner, as, for example, famous  "Ostro" (Paul Georg Fidrmuc); whom was guided by Heer Ost in Berlin, but once operated in Denmark - Italy and almost the entire war from Lisbon)

→Snow (Arthur Owens) Thiesen (Trautmann) two or three times, and Rantzau (Major Nikolaus Ritter) told him that if he ever had to go away himself for for any reason Thiesen would take charge in Hamburg in his absence. (AOB, I highly doubt - as Trautmann's expertise was in the technical field and not necessarily in military espionage; from their military ranks it could have matched; consider a tank commander had to replace a pilot) In fact, during Snow's (Arthur Owens') last visit to Lisbon in February 1941 Rantzau (Major Ritter) said that he was about to leave in order to undertake some work apparently outside Europe and that Snow would therefore be dealing with Thiesen in his absence. (This was as a matter of fact perfectly true, for we know from other sources (R.S.S. intercepts!)  that Rantzau (Major Ritter) did leave at that time to take charge of some undertaking in Cyrenaica.

!(AOB, This additional ill drawn conclusion is really a shame for such an organisation as M.I.5.  Do we believe that all was settled within a day, that Major Ritter was sacked and at the same time knew that he would next serve in the Cyrenaica?  Rubbish, of course. The mood among German soldiers in early 1941 one was that Rommel's party entered via Tripolis Libya successfully and quite many looked for a new challenge (but before Rommel landed at least some preparations must have existed before 12 February 1941 ). It was Major Ritter himself whom demanded to join Lazlo Almásy. Ritter claimed - that it was him whom discovered Rittmeister Lazlo Almásy in Hungary; whom was a famous North African explorer with a long standing career. He joined Almásy's early bold, thought, but then (1941) not yet successful endeavour. The word sacked is a purely an invention on behalf of M.I.5.   Please notice T.A. Robertson's  rather ill expressed (S250)  (S250return) sentence!         

He (Ritter) kept up a correspondence with Hamburg (Ritter's wife lived there) and other matters with (Kapt. z. See Herbert) Wichmann whom was almost the entire war the Leiter of Ast Hamburg), who would appear to have occupied the position attributed bt Snow to Thiesen. Presumably the two are identical) How is it possible - that a Service like M.I.5. could put on paper such nonsense?  Snow did not communicate with Hamburg after his return from Lisbon in March 1941. The only communication had been sent by means of an operator of M.I.5. telling Hamburg that Johnny was very ill.

→                The next person of importance after Thiesen (Thiele) was Dr. Kurtz whom Snow (Arthur Owens) met for the first time during his visit to Germany in August 1939. He appeared to occupy the position of Rantzau's (Major Ritter's) principle lieutenant.  Snow (Arthur Owens) had previously said that Rantzau's (Major Ritter's  right-hand man was a certain Dr. Schneider but when I (Arthur Owens) questioned him on this occasion he (Major Ritter) had formed the clear opinion that Kurtz was superior to Schneider. Apparently Rantzau (Major ritter did not get on very well with Schneider, and told Snow (Arthur Owens) on the occasion of his Lisbon visit that he had sacked him as he did not find his work satisfactory.

                    Snow (Arthur Owens) also met on several occasions, but as far as I could gather not before the end of 1938m a certain dr. Thiele (PF 602699 is just pointing at Trautmann!) (Mr. Gwyer wasn't the smartest guy) whom he understood to be the Hamburg wireless expert, presumably the head of I i (AOB, indeed he was). he was certain that this man was not concerned with anything except wireless communication. (might someone at the Office has whispered something in Gwyer's ears?) (Let us also not forget  - that Arthur Owens himself did not spoke the German language himself!)  He was certain that this man was not concerned with anything except wireless communication.  He had an assistant whom Snow (Arthur Owens)   met on several occasion named Lorenz (Hans Heino Lips, PF 64067, KV 2/756)  who was also known to Snow (Arthur Owens) as Bonne. This was a private nickname invented by Snow (Arthur Owens), but apparently it stuck people besides myself.  This man resembkled the other Dr. Lorenz, both in the age and appearance, and for that reason during the early part of our talks Snow (Arthur Owens) confused the two the two. Eventually he told me (Gwyer) he had thought the matter over and was quite clear that there were two Dr. Lorenz's - one tghe head of the military section referred to above and the other Thiele's assistant.

                    In addition to these people Snow (Arthur Owens) met several others at Hamburg of rather lesser importance. The first was Paulsen otherwise known as the 'Skipper' or the "Captain', because he had been the master of a merchant ship, apparently one which plied to english porst since he spoke extremely good English with some range of dialect, and knew Cardiff and Swansea and the South Wales coast very well.  he was described by Snow (Arthur Owens) as a 'general toust-about' employed by the three sections (I (military espionage )- II (sabotage) - III (counter-intelligence) to encertain agents in Hamburg, to meet their arrival and where necessary to see them across the frontier without papers being stamped.  It appears, however, that he → (page 9) →had particularly close links with the military section (I H), since on one occasion he proposed to Snow (Arthur Owens) that the latter should collect military information for him in England without letting Rantzau (Major Ritter) know that he was doing so, in order that they might jointly make a little money on the side.

KV 2/451-3, page 9

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→had particularly close links with the military section (I H), since on one occasion he proposed to Snow (Arthur Owens) that the latter should collect military information for him in England without letting Rantzau (Major Ritter) know that he was doing so, in order that they might jointly make a little money on the side. It appears that Rantzau (Major Ritter) know that he was doing so, in order that they might jointly make make a little money of the side.  It appears that Rantzau (Major Ritter) did not get well with Paulsen or have much opinion of his ability.  I (Gwyer) gathered from Snow (Arthur Owens) that Paulsen was ultimately sacked at the end of 1938 or the beginning of 1939.

                    There was also a certain Dr. Kellar and his wife, whom Snow (Arthur Owens) met for the first during his visit to Antwerp in October 1939.  This man, whom Snow (Arthur Owens) disliked, described himself as the Doctor's secretary and personal assistant.  Snow now says that this wife was the woman whom he met both on that visit and his two subsequent visits in December 1939 and February 1940 respectively/ Mrs. Kellar had, according to Snow (Arthur Owens), some particular link with the sabotage section (II) conducted by the Commander, to whom reference is made below.  Snow (Arthur Owens) described   how on his visit of December 1939 he had claimed that an explosion which had recently occurred in a factory in Scotland had been work of one of his men. Mrs. Kellar showed great interest in this and had said that she must have a complete report on the incident and the method by which the explosion was managed, so that she might take it immediately to Berlin.  Snow said, perhaps rather rashly, that the explosion had resulted from a time bomb disguised in a thermo flask. At this Mrs. Kellar became more exited still and asked Snow to provide her with a  diagram of the thermos flask, which he did, and with which she immediately departed for Berlin. (Mrs. Kellar was also a woman who gave Snow (Arthur Owens) a letter addressed to Horsfall-Ertz. Since, as we know, Abteilung II concerns itself with sabotage and subversive propaganda, this is consistent with her status as described by Snow (Arthur Owens).   Snow (Arthur Owens) also told me (Gwyer) that he had formed the impression that the reason for Mrs. Kellar;s presence in Antwerp on his various visits was that she was the liaison  between the 'Commander' and the Flemish Nationalist Party.

                    On this same visit to Antwerp in December 1939 Snow (Arthur Owens) also met a certain Dr. Kiess. He (Arthur Owens) told me (Mr. Gwyer) that, although he could not be certain, he had formed the impression that Kiess had not come with the Doctor (Major Ritter) from Hamburg but was one of the local men in Antwerp (as was, for example, Lt. z.V. Dierks).

                    In Antwerp Snow (Arthur Owens) also met on two of his three visits a man known to him as the Commander, whom he understood to be in charge of sabotage directed against this country.  I could not get very many details about the Commander from Snow (Arthur Owens) beyond the facts that he knew him to visit Antwerp frequently and to be concerned among other things with the placing of bombs on British ships in Amsterdam and Rotterdam. He did not consider him to be a person of great ability, though he was a pleasant if rather drunken companion. Snow (Arthur Owens) described to me (Mr. Gwyer) an exciting incident in his and the Commander's careers, when they had jointly visited a Mansion de Rendezvous (brothel) in Antwerp at a time when the Commander happened to have one time bomb in each of his trousers pockets.  According to Snow Rantzau (Major Ritter) shared his poor opinion of the Commander, and on one occasion asked Snow (Arthur Owens) whether he thought him really suitable for the work he was doing. Snow (Arthur Owens) said that he considered him most suitable, as he lacked the ingenuity and foresight necessary for planning successful sabotage.

                    When Snow (Arthur Owens) first knew Rantzau (Major Ritter) (late 1936)ha had a secretary who was then known to Snow (Arthur Owens) as Miss Bush (Busch).  This woman he (Major Ritter) subsequently married, apparently in the course of 1938.  According to Snow it was a large and fashionable wedding, followed by a reception in the largest restaurant of the town. After her marriage Miss Bush (Busch) was apparently generally known as the 'Baronin" (Baroness). (Snow (Arthur Owens) also said the 'Countess',  but this seems to be a point of which Vera Eriksson ( (AOB: : in some context Arthur Owens noticed that Ritter's wife was a rather clever woman). I (Mr. Gwyer) asked Snow (Arthur Owens) if he knew the origin of this title and if he supposed it merely to be a nickname.  He said no, he thought that she was really a Baroness, which he deduced curiously enough, from the fact that she was very fond of music and always had a box of herown for the season at the Hamburg Opera House.  After her marriage, the Boronin continued to work with the Doctor but acquired a new secretary, a younfg woman known to Snow (Arthur Owens) as Fräulein Krueger (Krüger).  He did not know her Christian name. On account of the similarity of names, I questioned Snow (Arthur Owens) very carefully in order to discover whether there was any possibility of → (page 10) → Fraulein Krueger and Mrs. Kellar being the same person. 

KV 2/451-3, page 10

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→ Fraulein Krueger and Mrs. Kellar being the same person.  He (Arthur Owens) told me that he was quite clear that they were two separate people, both because their appearance was different and because he knew that just before the war Fräulein Krueger had married Krueger had married a man whose name he did not know and had gone with him to live in South America, probably Brazil. (AOB, then it is likely that she will return to Germany, via the USA, during the war)

                    In addition to these people who were directly concerned with the Hamburg Stelle Snow (Arthur Owens) met two other men whose names he did not know.  The first was, he understood, the German counter-espionage agent (Referat III-F) agent to whom Rantzau (Major Ritter)  once introduced him saying that he wished him to describe to this man English methods of recruiting secret agents.  Snow (Arthur Owens) was not able at first to describe this man, but later on I asked him as an off-chance whether he had ever met in Hamburg a very tall thin weather-beaten man with a scar on his throat and a curious husky voice, who spoke excellent English (i.e. Walter Simon) (Hermann Walter Christian Simon, PF 46046, KV 2/1293).  Snow (Arthur Owens) then said that this was an exact description of the counter-espionage agent to whom he had been introduced.  The second person was a man whom Snow (Arthur Owens) thought to be connected with the Gestapo but who but who had recently returned from Russia where he had been acting as a German agent.  Snow (Arthur Owens) was unable to give any very coherent description to this man, who he said was of a very ordinary appearance, but he told me that this was the man whom he had later seen on 28.2.40 outside his flat in Kingston. (AOB: this man approached Arthur Owens on the street and started to speak about his son Robert)   

B.1.a.     13.4.42 (Arthur Owens was just not yet imprisoned for a year) (23 April 1941)      Sgd. J.M.A. Gwyer

KV 2/451-3, page 12     (minute 1472k)   AOB: I only selected a section ,which in my perception is of historical relevance

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Snow (Arthur Owens) then gave me the following account of Rantzau's (Major Ritter's early career.  He told me that Rantzau had served in the Air Force, apparently in the early part of the last was (1914-18), and had once told that he had been concerned in the fighting round the sugar factory near Ostend (Ostende in Belgium).  Apparently at a later stage in the war he was also serving at (von) Papen's staff in America.  After the war (1914-18) he had remained in America and gone into business as a textile manufacturer in partnership with a Jew who, so the Doctor (Major Ritter) said, had subsequently cheated him.  During this period he had also married a rich American, by whom he had had two children, one boy and one girl.  he had also apparently engaged in espionage for he had told Snow (Arthur Owens)  one occasion that he had once stolen an aeroplane from an American military aerodrome and had flown it across the border into Mexico.  Snow also formed the impression that he has set up an organisation in America, some nucleus of which still remained active at the time when Snow (Arthur Owens) knew him.  Snow (Arthur Owens) believed that the Doctor's strong dislike of employing women agents dated from some unfortunate experience that he had had during his time in America.

About 1933 or at least at the beginning of the Nazi regime Rantzau (Ritter) had returned to Germany bringing his wife with him (AOB, don't forget that the U.S. suffered enormously from the depression in the early 1930s).  he had, however, almost immediately secured a separation from her (Ritter's his US wife) and sent her to live in Bremen. She had then shown signs of wishing to return to America, but Rantzau (Ritter), either out of maice or for some other reason, had caused her passport to be impounded.  Snow (Arthur Owens) that she was still in Bremen.  Rantzau (Ritter) had, however, maintained some contact with America, where he had an organisation operating, and , as far as Snow (Arthur Owens) knew, he had visited America on two occasions, once between 8.9.37 and 15.2.38 on the extended trip to which Rantzau (Ritter) (Arthur Owens) in his letters of the time to Snow (Arthur Owens), and once between February 1940 and the end of April of the same year.

At some time in 1938 Rantzau (Major Ritter) has succeeded in divorcing his wife and marrying Miss Bush (Busch),. By her he had had one chuild, who had been about 8 months old at the time of Snow's (Arthur Owens')  to Lisbon (February 1941)

I asked Snow (Arthur Owens) if he knew where Rantzau's (Major Ritter's) was. He said that he had never visited it himself, because although the Doctor (Major Ritter) had invited him more than once he had always been dissuaded by his wife (the Baroness). Snow also understood that Rantzau's (Major Ritter's)  house was 'in the good quarter of Hamburg down by the river (Alster)'. he also understood that Rantzau's (Major Ritter's) mother live by herself at one town about 50 miles from Hamburg. (This agrees with Tate's (Wulf Dietrich Schmidt, one of Ritter's best friends; whom now was a double-cross agent in England) statement that Rantzau's mother lived at Verden).

(U400)   (U400return)  →  I showed Snow (Arthur Owens) the photograph supplied by the F.B.I. of Hans Ritter.  Snow (Arthur Owens) thought at first that it was a photograph of the Doctor (Major Ritter), and then, after looking at it → (page 13)→closely, said that it was very like him except that his left ear did not protrude in the way shown in the photograph and that the profile was not so good a likeness as the full face.

KV 2/451-3, page 13

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→closely, said that it was very like him except that his left ear did not protrude in the way shown in the photograph and that the profile was not so good a likeness as the full face. He (Arthur Owens) added that he thought he had heard the Doctor (Major Ritter) speak of his brother but was not absolutely certain. He spoke good English with an American accent. 

Hans Ritter(?).     Aged about 30; thin, plain face with a sharp nose; fair hair, unattractive, unfashionable dressed. Spoke good English with an American accent.

Frau Ritter (?)    Snow (Arthur Owens) described her as a very cautious woman who was exceedingly close with money, unlike the Doctor (Major Ritter) himself who was very generous, though, as Snow (Arthur Owens) pointed out, it was not his own money that he was spending.

Frau Ritter (Rantzau) was described as being very fond (caring) fond of music and always having her own box at the Opera.  Since the outbreak of war she has apparently ceased to work so actively with her husband and become part of the Hamburg A.R.P. (?) organisation.

!! AOB: I have heavily criticized the way - Mr. Gwyer, Marriott, and maybe also, T.A. Robertson have described what they thought was the truth - as to "prove" that Arthur Owens had lied about the fact the Major Ritter suspected him from being a British controlled agent.

Here, we encounter a truly critical counter evaluation on behalf of Mr. Masterman; whom takes the reason up why the Germans must have become suspicious about Arthur Owens' appearance in Lisbon; arriving on a airline wherefore regularly existed a waiting list! This latter fact was deliberately neglected in their post analyses!

We therefore have to digest a rather more thoroughly evaluated concept.  !!

    KV 2/451-3, page 20     (minute 1368b)

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Note on the Memorandum

"Dr. Rantzau's (Major Ritter's) meeting with Snow (Arthur Owens) and Celery (Walter Dicketts) (PF 66315; KV 2/674)

In Lisbon".

1.    This memorandum (meant is a foregoing work) is a work of exceptional ingenuity and has obviously entailed a great deal of thought. A full realisation of this fact, and the wish not to damp enthusiasm by hasty criticism, make me averse from rejecting the conclusions of the authors (Gwyer, Marriott and maybe also T.A. Robertson) and from objecting to the positive proposals which they make.  They may be right on many points, or even on all, and for merely mathematical reasons they are twice as likely to be right as I am.  But I am not absolved (released) from the duty of examining the memorandum critically, nor from that of stating my view, however mistaken, with regard to the issues raised by it.

            It must be remembered that the memorandum is largely a work of imagination, and is in form rather more detailed and complicated hypothesis on the lines of those suggested on 4.4.41. It is useful to consider all hypotheses which might be approximations of the truth, but I think that such hypotheses are most usefully stated in general terms and in outline. When we come down to details, there will, in the nature of things, be contradictions and "incredibility's" in any hypotheses which is advanced. That is due to imperfect knowledge.  It would probably be found in many of these cases that some unexpected fact of which we are ignorant would elucidate (explain)  the matter; but we have not got it. We cannot therefore really expect that any hypothesis will be found which fits all the so-called facts; if it did, it would probably turn out to be an untrue summary of the case. For example, we might discover that Kramer's (PF 602496, Fritz Kramer; KV 2/1742) instructions to Viper were given as a result of something which had occurred quite outside our (M.I.5's) knowledge, and which had caused the Germans to reverse their policy with regard to Celery. Such a revelation (disclosure) would immediately alter our view with regard to that part of the case.

2.    My general view of the hypothesis advanced in the memorandum is that it is largely based on an assumption which cannot be accepted. It rests, in fact, on the assumption that the Doctor (Major Ritter) was led to believe that Celery was a second-rate agent working for the Secret Service, who had not yet made any report to his superiors but was following Snow (Arthur Owens) to Lisbon in order to complete his case against him (thus against Arthur Owens).

            (N255)   (N255return) Now, quite definitely and clearly, I do not believe that the Doctor would ever have believed any such thing. He knows as well as we do the difficulties of securing a passage to and from Lisbon by any route, and the heavy expense of the journey.  He would surely say to himself that no one could undertake the journey unless he were either a business man with real business to do, or a Government official, or an agent sent by the Government department under a cover. But if the last, then certainly the agent would be of considerable importance, and would only go on the fullest instructions and after putting in the most careful reports. Anything else seems to me so "phoney" (bogus) as to be next door to incredible. A thirty-shillings-a-week agent just does not fit into the picture for such a venture.     

            Thus, whilst I (Mr. Masterman) I think the general idea at the back of the hypothesis is as likely to be true as any other, I also think that this detailed explanation of it is most unlikely to be true.

KV 2/451-3, page 21        (R265)     ↓↓↓↓↓     (R265return)

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3.    Holding this view, I think that it would be a waste of time for me to go through the memorandum point for point; though I should perhaps mention that I do not think that the Doctor (Major Ritter) would have reasoned on the facts at his disposal as he is imagined to do in paragraphs 14, 15, 16, 16 and 17 (considering the formerly provided Memorandum).  Broadly speaking, any of these hypotheses so far advanced can be supported in a fairly convincing manner by a judicious use of the facts, reports and statements at our disposal.  All that the most assiduous (tireless) student of this case can possibly assert is that the broad hypothesis which he favours is more likely to be approximately correct than the others. We cannot usefully express certainly on matters about which doubt is the only rational attitude. I shall therefore confine (limit) myself to the practical issues raised and to be the proposals contained in the memorandum.

4.    One short method of dealing with the whole question has been suggested by Mills.  It is that if the decision is that Snow's (Arthur Owens') transmitter cannot be started up again, the object of cross-examining him again disappears, and that we should not waste time and energy when there is no practical result to be gained.  I reject this view, both because I personally believe that the transmissions can be restarted, and, alternatively, because I think that it is always wise to keep cases open in case changed circumstances make it desirable for us to use them actively again.

5.    before stating my own views on the proposals suggested, I think it is worth while restating the following warnings:-

a)    In his (Arthur Owens') cross-examination Snow contradicted himself so often and so completely that no credence can be placed in his remarks except when they are supported by other evidence. Consequently, little or nothing should be built on statements made by him.

b)    This caution is made months to brood over this case. We have other things to think about, but he has not. What will now tell us probably not what he thinks to be the truth, but rather what he wishes to get across in order to secure either his release or an amelioration (improvement) of his condition. Other things being equal, his earlier statements are more likely to be the truth than the later ones. It is also noticeable that he has great power of creating an impression; thus, after two very experienced interrogators, White and Montagu, had examined him, both were of the opinion that he had admitted everything to the Doctor (Major Ritter). Montagu starts his report by saying: "I have no doubt that the Doctor is aware that we have controlled the Snow (Arthur Owens) traffic".  yet now the view held with almost equal strength that the control of the transmissions was not given away by Snow (Arthur Owens).

c)    It is therefore wise to plan our action as far as possible only on ascertained facts, and to remind ourselves con- → (page 23)→ constantly that everything else is surmise.

KV 2/451-3, page 23 (incorrectly fit in the current file)

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→ constantly that everything else is surmise (guessed). It is a known fact that Snow (Arthur Owens) brought back £10,000, and this is much stronger evidence with regard to his relations with the Doctor (Major Ritter) than any statement of his or any balancing of probabilities.

d)    Another fact, and a very relevant one, is that Snow (Arthur Owens) has not appealed.  The reasons for this we cannot tell;  either he has the belief that he has a better chance of escape from prison by trusting to our clemency; or he has some discreditable episode in his career which he fears many emerge during the enquiry; or he may wish to wait till he knows, for example, that an awkward (obstinate) witness (such as Celery) (Arthur Owens' apparent opponent!) is out of the country; or he hopes to be able to invent a story which may deceive us if we give him (Arthur Owens) a lead.  perhaps the most likely guess is that he is afraid of some disclosure; but it is only a guess.

e)    In this regard it is most important to remember that we are apt to think of a "double agent" in a way different to that in which the "double agent" in a way different to that in which the double agent as a man who, though supposed to be an agent of Power A by that power, is in fact working in the interests and under the direction of Power B.  But in fact the agent, especially if he has started work before the war, is often trying to work for both A and B, and to draw emoluments from both.

            This seems to me to be probably true of Snow (Arthur Owens). Perhaps he was 75 per cent on our side, but I should need a lot of evidence to convince me (Mr. Masterman) that that he has not played for both sides.  It is always possible that he was paid money under another name and that this is money waits for him in America (U$ 2500 which Arthur Owens got on a Bank Account on his name in America, in spring 1940!) His later letters to Lily give some warrant for this view, as does his desire that the Doctor (Major Ritter; by the time of this document no longer in charge in the German Abwehr)   regards him as a man who could be bribed or frightened (where is Masterman's proof?) or frightened into doing his better work for the Germans.

6.    The first practical question under discussion in the (once written) memorandum is whether or not we shall start up again Snow's (Arthur Owens') transmissions. As a general rule it is always best to do everything consistent with our own previous message and with the story that we have put up.  Thus, as Snow (Arthur Owens) has told the Germans that he has broken down in health and nerves (AOB, which Arthur Owens did not himself, such message had been conveyed by M.I.5!),, it would be right for him to recommence when his health permits. They cannot tell whether his illness was real or assumed.  If he has had a bad breakdown, this is about the right time to restart him.  he could say that he had had difficulties in finding a secure hide-out whence he could safely transmit; that in health he was still enfeebled (weakened), and that he would therefore start only with weather and odd scraps of news, since he could not get about the country to collect information, and his old organisation was of course dispersed. I do not expect that he could send over any misinformation for some months.  The Germans, on any showing, must be suspicious, and it will take time to restore confidence; but on the long view I see no reason why he should not be again of real use in, saym six months' time. I do not, of course, suggest that he should be allowed to have any knowledge of or part in the transmission himself.

KV 2/451-3, page 24

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again they will be more and more convinced that his illness was a blind and that he in captivity; and this will sooner or later cause them to enquire further into his connections and sub-agents.

            Left to my own devices, therefore, I should certainly recommend restarting Snow's (Arthur Owens') transmissions. This practical difficulties suggested the other story, and I am not competent  to discuss them. If they are indeed insuperable (impossible), there is more of course no more to be said, and I reluctantly abandon the hope of restarting the transmissions. If they are not insuperable, I think that we ought to restart them.

7.    The first proposal made in the memorandum, on page 10, is about Snow Junior (Robert Owens) should be seen and asked for more information about the incident at the Mars Restaurant.  I see little advantage in this.  Snow Junior (Robert Owens) was put in prison because he confessed to having passed over details of the lay-out of aerodromes to the Germans.  What do we gain by pressing him for further details of the Mars Restaurant incident, much of which appeared  at the time to be invention?  He is unlikely to tell us anything now about it which we can confidently believe, unless by accident or because he thinks it will tell in his favour.  He declared that he had no means and saw no chance of getting into touch with his interlocutor again; nor can he while he remains, as he must, in Brixton.  I do not think that very much harm would come of interrogating him, but I do think that it is rather a waste of time, and that we are in fact more likely to get something from him in the future (if he has anything to tell us)  if he is allowed to languish (suffer) in prison without a visit from us.

            I do not, however, want to press this view if other officers in the section want to talk to him. I think if they do that he should not be asked about word or name made invisible. If this is anything more than a poor joke on the part of  name made invisible or some such person, it is better to wait and see if anything emerges later along that line.

8.    The second proposal is that Snow (Arthur Owens) should be seen and interrogated again about his Lisbon trip.  Here again I am in disagreement. After long interrogations, the bulk of which were undertaken by Mr. Marriott, we put Snow (Arthur Owens) in prison on two grounds: his betrayal of his secret, (AOB, the major reason what happened between Arthur Owens and Major Ritter in Lisbon, was caused by an apparent wrong judgment on behalf of M.I.5, as is pointed within this memorandum written by Mr. Masterman just in the very report about the fact that Arthur Owens never could have obtained a priority airline seat without official intermediationWhy, do they time-and-again ignore the downside of their handling?), as admitted by himself (it sometimes happens when in cross-examination people quasi admit matters that stress and fatigue is the reason and not a caused outcome of such session), and his failure to warn Celery of his danger.  We hoped that a period of incarceration might bring out more of the truth.  I agree with Marriott's view that we went to visit him at Stafford (Prison) too soon, and thus gave him an exaggerated view of the strength of the cards in his hand.  If we cross-examine him again now we are unlikely to get more of the truth and may easily get a great deal of twisted invention and baffling lies. If the object of cross-examining is to get to the bottom of some of the unexplained mysteries connected with him, I think that the enterprise is unlikely to be successful. He will give us more or better information (if he has any) only if he judges that he will thereby obtain better conditions or avoid worse punishment. A semi-legal cross-examination at this stage is unlikely to get anywhere. The only hopes therefore are either threats, which we must be prepared to carry out, and which I myself should be very loath (unwilling) to use, or promises or expectations of →

KV 2/451-3, page 22 


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→ amelioration (improvement). If the latter, I feel very strongly that by far the best hope of disclosures is for Major Robertson (TAR) himself to interview him.  Snow has a traditional and instinctive (though perhaps irrational) affection for the Major (as he had towards Major Ritter (the Doctor)), and if he is going to produce anything he is going to bring it out for him.  If it is decided that Snow (Arthur Owens) is to be cross-examined (again) at length once more, I do urge that he should first be seen by Major Robertson, who could then no doubt make some excuse for him to be interviewed by other officers.

            My view is, that so far as his own case is concerned, it is tactically wrong to cross-examine him now; but I am quite prepared to give way on this issue if it is felt that extraneous information - e.g. about personalities of the German secret Service - can be procured from him. If he is cross-examined, I think that the greatest care should be taken not to tell him about and of his former colleagues, especially Celery (Walter Dicketts). We do not want to be saddled (burdened) unnecessarily with the trouble and work involved in an appeal by him.

10.    The third proposal is that consideration should be given to the position of Celery (Walter Dicketts).  This obviously, I cannot comment on, since I do not know what is proposed.

B.1.a.    26.11.41                Sgd.    J.C. Masterman

KV 2/451-3, page 25      (minute 1360b)

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Dr. Rantzau's (Major Ritter's) Meeting with Snow and Celery in Lisbon.

(PF 53776 = Tate (Wulf Dietrich Schmidt KV 2/61 - KV 2/62)

1.    It is extremely important to us to know exactly what passed between Snow (Arthur Owens) and Dr. Rantzau (Major Ritter) during their meeting in Lisbon in February 1941 (on about 15th February 1941).  Snow's (Arthur Owens')  statement on the matter appears to everyone who has interrogated him untrue (AOB, in essence it was, nevertheless, true). I cannot, however, be untrue in the sense that nothing out of the ordinary occurred. For this would mean that Snow (Arthur Owens) had first told a lie which caused him to be imprisoned and yet while in prison stoutly maintained the same lie even though he by that time fully aware of the consequences to himself. (AOB, Major Ritter, when interrogated in May 1946, acknowledged that the very fact that Arthur Owens arrived in Lisbon on an airline seat which he only could have obtained with official intervention; just equal to what Arthur Owens had stated, when he returned from Lisbon in the fourth week of March 1941) (two words: "tunnel vision")  This seems a situation absurd to be believed. On the other hand, if Snow (Arthur Owens) lied in the sense that he has not told us the full truth and that he did in fact reveals to Rantzau (Major Ritter) the whole story of his work with us, the consequences are extremely serious. It would scarily be possible to suppose in that event that Tate (Wulf Dietrich Schmidt) and all the other agents who have subsequently become in any way connected with him were not known to the Germans to be controlled.

2.    Until Snow (Arthur Owens) can be induced to tell the truth, it must always remain mysterious what did occur. There are, however, certain known facts in the case from which at least a few deductions can safely be drawn.  The known facts in their chronological order are as follows:

    4.2.1941        Celery left England (at Liverpool) on the S.S. Cressado.

    14.2.1941      Snow (Arthur Owens) left England (from a Bristol Airport)

                        Snow (Arthur Owens) arrived in Lisbon.

    16.2.41        (about)  S.I.S. have reported to us that about this date Kuno Weltzien (KV 2/1930) boasted in conversation with an agent of their's in Lisbon that there was on board de S.S. Cressado an agent (Celery - Walter Dicketts) whom the Germans regarded as a valuable means of planting false information on the British. The exact exact material document is temporarily missing. It seems sufficiently clear, however, that it must have been after Snow's (Arthur Owens') arrival in Lisbon.  Both he  (Arthur Owens) and Celery (Walter Dickets) concur in saying that Rantzau was worried that the Cressado had not yet arrived and had inquiries made about her whereabouts. It was certainly in the course of the enquiries that Weltzien's remark was made.  Since the Cressado was not many days over due, one must assume that enquiries were not instituted until a few days before her (the Cressado's) actual arrival.

KV 2/451-3, page 26

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    27.2.1941    Celery left Lisbon for Germany in the name of Denker.

    12.3.41         Snow (Arthur Owens) was S.I.S. representative in Lisbon and told him approximately the same story that he has since told us, and was informed by the representative of what Kuno Weltzien was reported to have said.

    21.3.41         Celery (Walter Dicketts) returned to Lisbon (after a three weeks lasting stay in Hamburg and Berlin).

    27.3.1941      Snow (Arthur Owens) and celery returned to London, Snow (Arthur Owens) bringing with him £10,000 sabotage material and a new code.

    28.3.41          Snow (Arthur Owens) gave his account of his meetings with the Doctor (Major Ritter) which was undoubtedly untrue. (It was, nevertheless mainly true, but his/their "apparent tunnel vision" made a clear analysis impossible!)

    30.5.41          Celery (Walter Dicketts) made another visit to Lisbon. (for a second time) 


    1.6.1941)        Three messages passed between Hamburg and Dr. Rantzau (Major Ritter) who was then in Cyrenaica. (AOB, Major Ritter had obtained a different objective, as he no longer was committed to Abwehrstelle Hamburg, but was committed to Rommel's DAK and about to join Lazlo Almásy's endeavour in North Africa) (Quite curious, was, that M.I.5 could have been better informed about Ritter's whereabouts, when they would have noticed the RSS series available on what played in/or about Tripolis (Tripoli) and Lazlo Almásy which truly existed in great details!) (AOB, again an apparent example of their maniacal "tunnel vision" mania) It is clear that these messages refer to Snow (Arthur Owens) and Celery (Walter Dicketts). Secondly, that he had made arrangements for a full dress enquiry into Celery's case to take place in Hamburg, which he himself hoped to attend. thirdly, that he (Major Ritter or his successor) regarded the circumstance of Snow's (Arthur Owens') sudden illness as suspicious. Fourthly, that owing to to his absence in Cyrenaica he was not completely abreast (well informed) of the latest developments in the case.

    5.6.1941        (about) Georg / George Sessler (alias George Sinclair) (PF 601032) (KV 2/528) immediately after his meeting with Celery (Walter Dicketts) in Lisbon wrote to his relations in Milwaukee to say that his longstanding plan to come to America was, he hopped, about succeed.

    8.7.1941       Viper (I cannot trace his real name, as apparently there existed also a link to a: Viper and to Communists) was instructed by Kramer (KOP), his case officer, to inform the British that Celery (Walter Dicketts), an important British Secret Service agent, had arranged with (Dr.) Hans Ruser (British alias: Junior; PF 66118 which reference is no longer existing) to visit Germany the previous February under the name (and passport) Denker. While there he had been bought by the Germans who had given him money and secret ink and arranged with him that he should send information to them. He had not kept his side of the bargain. In support of the story Viper showed a photograph of Celery (Walter Dicketts) and gave information which enabled S.I.S. to check Celery's return from Germany under the (German) name of Denker.

3.    it appears from Kuno Weltzien's remark that the Germans were aware before Celery (Walter Dicketts)  that he was a British agent.  If they had simply supposed him to be a sub-agent of Snow's (Arthur Owens') then he was only valuable as a means of passing false information if Snow (Arthur Owens) were controlled by us.  But in that case Snow (Arthur Owens) himself was the valuable means and → (page 27) →Celery a mere appendage (attachment).

KV 2/451-3, page 27

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→Celery a mere appendage (attachment).  The force of Weltzien's remark appears to have been that Celery (Walter Dicketts) was in his own right valuable, in this sense a thing which would only be true were here a Britis agents. This view is reinforced by Snow's (Arthur Owens') own statement that although Rantzau (Major Ritter) had other pressing engagements (outside the Amt Ausland/Abwehr) he postponed his departure from Lisbon on at least two occasions in order to be certain of seeing Celery (Walter Dicketts) personally. If Celery (Walter Dicketts) were only a sub-agent of Snow's (Arthur Owens'), the Doctor's (Major Ritter's) anxiety to see him before he left for Germany seems incomprehensible (unintelligible), since he could, and in fact did, see him later in Germany.  If, on the other hand, Celery (Walter Dicketts) were a British agent, it is very understandable that the Doctor (Major Ritter) should have felt that he must decide in person whether or not Celery (Walter Dicketts) should go into Germany at all, and if so, what should be done with him immediately he got there.  This view that the Germans actually considered Celery to be a British agent as opposed to a controlled German agent, is reinforced by the Viper story, of which more will be said below.

4.    The question now arises if the Germans believed that Celery (Walter Dicketts) was a British agent, what sort of agent did they suppose him to be. It is observable that in July, on the evidence of Rantzau's (Major Ritter's) messages (AOB, the British services possessed an extremely broad source of information which monitored almost all German communications and the RSS (R.S.S.) did so by monitoring all Abwehr wireless), the Germans were still suspicious of him, but did not apparently regard the Snow (Arthur Owens) case as necessarily closed, though they felt certain that something was wrong.  Now the method by which one uses an enemy agent to plant false information on the enemy is above all things not to reveal to him that one knows him to be an enemy agent, or by the same  token, to make no attempt to buy him.  Why therefore were the Germans suspicious of a man whom one knows to be an enemy agent. Equally, if Celery (Walter Dicketts) were an ordinary British agent it would have been necessary for the Germans to assume that the British authorities had know a very great deal about Snow (Arthur Owens) from the first moment of Celery's (Walter Dicketts') association with him, and had sufficient evidence on which to hang him from the moment of Celery's first return from Lisbon. In this assumption → (page 28) → there cannot possibly have been any question in July of the Snow (Arthur Owens) case still being alive.  

KV 2/451-3, page 28

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there cannot possibly have been any question in July of the Snow (Arthur Owens) case still being alive. Alternatively, if they considered celery simply as a double agent working under British control, one can see no reason why they should have suspicious of him in July.  One cannot possibly be suspicious of a known double enemy agent.  For these reasons one is driven to conclude that the Germans supposed Celery (Walter Dicketts) to be a British agent whose loyalty they had succeeded in buying during his visit in Germany. But the question remains, why did they think that it is worthwhile to buy him at that, from their point of view, late stage in the proceedings.  So far as they knew Celery, the British agent, had been in close touch with Snow (Arthur Owens) and considered by the latter as his sub-agent for a period of at least a month.  It therefore seems incredible that they should have supposed that the British authorities were not actively investigating Snow's (Arthur Owens' case, or that the authorities should not already be well informed about it.  They would have been obliged to assume that the British agent, Celery (Walter Dicketts), who had apparently been investigating the Snow (Arthur Owens) case for a month had made some report to his superiors.  If he had, there was clearly no point in buying his silence in Lisbon, since by that time his actions had already blown the Snow (Arthur Owens) case sky high.

5.    Pursuing this line of thought, one is compelled to conclude that the Germans supposed Celery (Walter Dicketts) to be a British agent who for some reason had not yet made any report about Snow (Arthur Owens) to his superiors, and whose continued silence it was therefore worthwhile to buy in Lisbon, a thing which they accordingly attempted to do. It is this believe dated from a moment between Snow's (Arthur Owens') arrival in Lisbon must and Celery's (Walter Dicketts'), it seems as clear as anything well can be that Snow must have been the person who informed (AOB, understand: confirmed) them of the facts. This is consistent with the acknowledged facts that Snow (Arthur Owens) gave us a false report of his doings (AOB, they are still, severely, defected by an apparent form of "tunnel vision"), and provides a clue to his motive in doing so (which is otherwise obscure), and to the particular nature of the lie which he told. Clearly he cannot admit to us that he had already before Celery (Walter Dicketts) had even arrived betrayed him, to the extent of giving the Germans to understand that he wads a → (page 29) → British agent. (how can they prove their ill visions?) (AOB: did they, in M.I.5, really possessed knowledge about what went on in the minds of their German counter players? They only were expressing what appears in their, quite distorted minds, due to the lack of seriously understanding on what played in the minds of their opponents!)

KV 2/451-3, page 29

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→ British agent. Equally, he could not tell us that nothing had occurred out of the ordinary, since it is clear both from Snow's own account and from Celery's, that the former was almost completely ignorant of what the latter had done in Germany. Snow (Arthur Owens) must therefore have had it in mind that Celery might discover in Germany that his position with regard to the (failures on behalf of tactical M.I.5!) British authorities was already known to the Germans and also that Snow (Arthur Owens) was their source of information.  The only way in which Snow (Arthur Owens) could guard himself on this issue (when those writing such kind of paper would have had a graduated academic background, at least nowadays, it would be entirely unacceptable, to bend evidence like in this way!), and yet conceal from us his betrayal (where is the proof?) of Celery (Walter Dicketts), was to tell the story which he did in fact tell inconsistent and unlikely though it may have been.

6.    We must now consider what was Snow's motive in this revelation (disclosure) (AOB: I would like to close this nonsense; please notice Mr. Masterman's realistic notice: (N255)   (N255return) (AOB, digesting the latter reference, how long does it take for - quite ill Crown Civil Servants - to realise what the real background of their ill thoughts had been; I am aware that "tunnel vision" might it be a symptom of an illness?) to the Germans, and also so far as we can, what was the exact nature revelation.  On this point there is a certain amount which can be said under the heading of know facts. Previously, on two occasions, Snow (Arthur Owens) had been required to introduce sub-agents to the Germans.  In each case, he had shown himself, remarkably, jealous of their position (a mutual circumstance) and had found means of ensure that they did not as originally proposed, go into Germany to receive training there. Moreover, in G.W.'s (Welsh Gwilym Williams') case, it seems likely  that Snow (Arthur Owens) had informed  (the proof, please) the Germans that he was not after all fitted for the South Wales project at a time when the project was the most important thing in the Snow (Arthur Owens) case (the proof, please!).  Except on this assumption, it is difficult to explain why the project was dropped at the moment when if was just about to come to a successful issue. For the reasons one is entitled (Critically - really?) to assume that Snow was also jealous of Celery's position, and would take steps to see that he remained so far as possible in the background from the German point of view. There is also independent evidence from  (R.T.) Reed that Snow (Arthur Owens) that Snow (Arthur Owens) before the Lisbon visit was in fact intensively jealous of Celery (evidence, from hear-say!).  This  is not to say of course that Snow (Arthur Owens) went to Lisbon prepared to betray Celery.  On the other hand, it is clear that supposing Snow (Arthur Owens) had been moved by jealousy to say to the Doctor at their first meeting that he was suspicious of Celery, the whole curious status of Celery (Walter Dicketts) as a British agent who had not yet reported to his superiors, → (page 30)→ would automatically have unfolded itself in the course of the Doctor's (Major Ritter's) questions.

KV 2/451-3, page 30

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→ would automatically have unfolded itself in the course of the Doctor's (Major Ritter's) questions. Rantzau (Major Ritter) would inevitably have asked Snow (Arthur Owens) in what respect he was suspicious of Celery, , to which Snow, if he wished to damage Celery with the Germans, could only have replied that he was afraid of Celery giving the show away to the British authorities (where is the academic evidence of all this?) (AOB, please reconsider again the foregoing bookmark links N255 and N255return). To do so, he would have been obliged to admit in view of his previous wireless reports about Celery (Walter Dicketts), that the latter had been deliberately deceiving him.  This statement could had only one meaning, that Celery had been deceiving him deliberately and therefore acting in the interest of the British authorities.  One can well imagine that when the conversation reached this point, it began to be obvious to Snow (Arthur Owens) that he had unintentionally placed himself in considerable danger. In fact, Snow's (Arthur Owens') statement of March 28th (1941) contains a very convincing passage, not wholly consistent with the story he was then telling about the ugly gleam which came into Rantzau's (Major Ritter's) eye at one point at one point during their first meeting (meant in February 1941, in Lisbon). From this point the train of events is obvious. He (Arthur Owens) could not for his own safety however, admit that Celery  

AOB:    (Q260)    (Q260return) ! Please digest again the bookmark link (Q260), herein in which now Obstlt. Ritter explains:- what Arthur Owens had done towards the end of March 1941, what the real reasons had been for the German suspicions against Arthur Owens, and his confronting the latter with his query - whether he was a British agent; which Arthur Owens did admit.

  → Snow (Arthur Owens) had been trapped by his first unguarded remark about Celery into admitting that Celery was a British agent. (AOB: all are guesses, because they do not possess any proof)  He (Arthur Owens) could not for his own safety however, admit that Celery (Walter Dicketts), whether British agent or not, had made any report to the British authorities on the Snow He (Arthur Owens) could not for his own safety however, admit that Celery, whether a British agent or not, had made any report to the British authorities on the Snow (Arthur Owens) case.  Had he (Arthur Owens) done so (continuing their very guesses), the Doctor (Major Ritter) might well have considered that it would be too dangerous in the light of what Snow knew, to permit him to return to England (AOB, what proved to be, after-all significant - was, that Ritter possessed a friendship with Arthur Owens since 1936; and in Holland we say: "the soup will not be digested too hot"). Snow (Arthur Owens) could therefore only have said (all guesses, still) one thing, namely that celery was a British agent (where is the proof, beyond continuing guesses?), namely was a a British agent only in the sense that he was a counter-espionage agent, employed in England to look for enemy agents. (Why was after all Walter Dicketts so well treated for three weeks and was lodged in both Hamburg and Berlin in, what is now considered 5 Star Hotels as Vierjahreszeiten and Hotel Adlon in Berlin?) he would (again all guesses, no proof) then say that he (Arthur Owens) had first met Celery by chance, and as a result of his attempt to recruit him, to which Celery had played up, had to some extent aroused his suspicions (where is the proof?), but gave him no definite evidence against him/ In fact, the reason for Celery's (Walter Dicketts') willingness to go with him (Arthur Owens) to Lisbon was that he hoped to pick up there the evidence which he was not able to obtain in England.

KV 2/451-3, page 31

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7.    It is possible to extract from Snow's (Arthur Owens') statement of 28th March (1941) a considerable amount of detail corroborative (confirming) of this theory.

The point taken in order are as follows:

(a)    On page 3 Snow (Arthur Owens) records what he says and celery denies was his conversation with Celery (Walter Dicketts) at their first meeting in Lisbon (Hotel Metropole).  This conversation is not very consistent with the story Snow (Arthur Owens)  was then telling, but is wholly consistent with the imaginary situation described in the preceding paragraphs.

(b)    On page 14 Snow (Arthur Owens) states definitely what for the sake of consistency he was subsequently obliged to deny, that Rantzau (Major Ritter) did not know that his wireless messages were controlled. This statement, as Snow (Arthur Owens) himself realised, in inconsistent with the story he was then telling, but is completely consistent with the imaginary position of Celery outlined above.

(c)    On page 21 of his statement Snow (Arthur Owens) said that he had not given the Germans any names of the British officials who were controlling him because "I had not been walked in on.  I had to watch that point immediately".  This is absolutely inconsistent with the story he was then attempting to tell, but wholly consistent with the theoretical story given above. One can well understand in that case that Snow (Arthur Owens) would have had to watch this particular point immediately.

            Lastly there is a curious conversation between Celery (Walter Dicketts) and the Doctor (Major Ritter), recorded in a latter interrogation of Snow (Arthur Owens). He presents (Arthur Owens) Celery as saying that he had been living for the last considerable number of months under some financial difficulty, as he was being paid only 30/- (shilling) a week, but that he expected to be rewarded with a commission in the Air Force on his return from Lisbon.  This story is not in itself particularly untrue, but Celery (Walter Dicketts) strongly denies having uttered the words in question and we are inclined to believe him. The problem is to know why Snow (Arthur Owens) says that Celery (Walter Dicketts) said this, since their utterance (note) adds not very much to the credibility  of Snow's (Arthur Owens') own story.  but it is to be observed that these words give a very accurate picture of the imaginary position of Celery (Walter Dicketts) as a low-paid agent which we have described above.

8.    The next point to be discussed is the relation of this theory to Celery himself. It obliges us to assume that in the German view Celery was a British agent (though of a subordinate and peculiar type) whom the Germans were more or less satisfied they → (page 32)→that they had bought when he was in Hamburg.  

KV 2/451-3, page 32

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→that they had bought when he was in Hamburg. Does this mean that Celery's (Walter Dicketts's) story is therefore also untrue? It appears not impossible that the answer to this question should be no. Snow (Arthur Owens) had presumably represented to Rantzau (Major Ritter) that although Celery (Walter Dicketts) was to some extent deceiving him, he had nevertheless shown a genuine sympathy when approached.  Snow (Arthur Owens) would presumably have added that in his opinion Celery (Walter Dicketts) was only working for the British in order to secure the return of his commission, and could equally well be induced to work for the Germans if he were sufficiently well paid.  To this the Doctor (Major Ritter) himself would have added a further consideration , namely that Celery (Walter Dicketts)  would be a valuable means of planting false information so long as he did not know that the Germans knew him to be a British agent.  It seems possible that the Doctor (Major Ritter) may therefore have argued that he could gain something either way by concealing his knowledge from Celery (Walter Dicketts) and yet expecting himself to the full to impress and flatter Celery (Walter Dicketts) in Hamburg (expensive lodging etc.), provided always that he left Snow (Arthur Owens) afterwards in a position to buy Celery's (Walter Dicketts') silence on the particular matters relating to him.  It will be observed that whatever the Doctor (Major Ritter) may in fact have thought, this was the programme that he (Major Ritter) carried through. He did exert himself to the full to impress Celery (Walter Dicketts)  in Hamburg, and paying him, he was careful to give Celery (Walter Dicketts) himself only a comparatively small sum of money, while informing him that he could in the future draw upon Snow (Arthur Owens) to a total of £5,000.  Celery was not to get this money in a lump sum and it would therefore have been clear to him that he could only touch it over a period by continuing to give a negative report on Snow (Arthur Owens) to his superiors (T.A. Robertson?), and doing his utmost to keep Snow (Arthur Owens) at liberty and clear of suspicion. Moreover, it was this plan, either by Celery's (Walter Dicketts') defalcation or because the British authorities chose to make independent enquiries about Snow (Arthur Owens) (AOB: one of the special preliminary instructiond given verbally on behalf of T.A. Robertson of M.I.5) , the Doctor (Major Ritter) would still gain something, since he would be able to use Celery (Walter Dicketts) the genuine British agent for planting false information.  To this end, he (Major Ritter) Celery (Walter Dicketts) to the Abteilung (Referat) II (Sabotage) (which we now understand to be a combination of (British) S.O.1 and 2) → (page 33) →to provide him with a mass of propaganda material, the more important part of which has since been lost by Section V (Special section of British S.I.S.).

KV 2/451-3, page 33 +++++

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→to provide him with a mass of propaganda material, the more important part of which has since been lost by Section V (Special section of British S.I.S.).  In these circumstances there seems no reason that Celery's (Walter Dicketts') story is untrue, or that he ever became aware of the fact that Rantzau supposed him to be a British agent.  This strange situation would also account for the Germans' suspicion of Celery in the subsequent July (by then Major Ritter had crashed with his airplane in the Mediterranean Sea, and was in a military hospital; though already for some time disconnected from Ast Hamburg), in that they would have remained uncertain whether they had impressed him sufficiently in Hamburg or not - a suspicion which would of course be reinforced by Snow's silence. (AOB: Arthur Owens was imprisoned, since 23 April 1941, under HO (Alien) Order 18B, also caused by the contrary statements provided against Arthur Owens, by Walter Dicketts!)   After Celery's second visit to Lisbon these suspicions would of course have been confirmed whether (Lt. Georg) Sessler did or did not not report his conversation with Celery (Walter Dicketts).  It would have been clear to Rantzau (once Major Ritter, but when the time this referring onto, Rantzau was no longer committed onto Ast Hamburg) that Celery (Walter Dicketts) was deliberately avoiding the full investigation of his case which had been planned to take place in Hamburg.

(V450) ↓↓↓   (V450return)

9.    See major Ritter's final report (attached) (AOB, prepared on 31.7.41; though it had been captured after Germany's surrender spring 1945! this latter circumstance may have been the reason why the last part of this document is more according the realistic truth, in contrast to the appalling first part of the document. The words used are suggesting that they possessed its content already in November 1941; albeit that it had been substituted after translation, and maybe, adapting the text in a way that it suits better their wartime vision. Albeit: that this is my hypothesis, as the signature presented was not Ritter's but that of his brother Hans!

10.    We have up to this point confined ourselves as far as possible to those facts which are beyond dispute.  It is at this point relevant to draw attention to certain considerations which, if not absolutely certain are nevertheless reasonably well established. The considerations are the apparent trust which the Germans continue to place in the cases of G.W. (Gwilym Williams), Tate (Wulf Dietrich Schmidt; KV 2/61, KV 2/62),  Rainbow  Eibner, KV 2/1066, PF 55038, Tricycle He was no longer trusted from early 1944 onwards his German spy name was Iwan! Balloon and gelatine, all of which are to a certain extent dependent upon, or are compromised by the Snow (Arthur Owens) Case.  The reasons for believing that the Germans continue to rely upon these cases are too well-known to need setting out in details.

11.    Whether as suggested in the foregoing paragraphs the Doctor (Major Ritter) imagines that Snow is in prison, or whether, as in our view is less probable, he imagines that Snow is in hospital suffering from a lingering illness, we feel that to start up the transmitter at this stage (do we jump in time again towards the end of 1941?) could only, if successful have the advantage presenting us with an extra transmitter to make full use of which we should have to have some objective in view, which objective, however, we should have for some very considerable time to avoid reaching since anything like a coincidence between starting up the transmitter and the manifestation of → (page 34)→ an objective would be exceedingly suspicious, while if our venture were successful, we might destroy the Germans' confidence in all the agents connected with Snow (Arthur Owens).    AOB, I would like to skip further page 34 and copy page 35 which constitutes the closure of the reference document.

KV 2/453-3, page 34

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→ an objective would be exceedingly suspicious, while if our venture were successful, we might destroy the Germans' confidence in all the agents connected with Snow (Arthur Owens). We might perhaps add a point which has not influenced us in arriving at this conclusion namely, almost insuperable practical difficulties with which we should be confronted before the transmitter could actually be started up (AOB, in the case that Arthur Owens (Snow) sits in captivity; and M.I.5 (cq. Mr. Masterman's group) intends to fake the Germans that Arthur Owens had cured his illness. Aiming at the fact that the Germans should acknowledge and the contact being re-established). Are we to use the new code ( a thing  in itself presenting great difficulties), and are we to make use of the curious expressions which appear in Snow's version of the Lisbon story?  Is the transmitter to be operated by Snow (Arthur Owens) himself or by his operator, and is Snow (Arthur Owens) himself in fact to be made aware of the contents of the traffic?  We should ourselves, both in principle and in view of the story speculative nature of the conclusions which we have reached about the case, be very strongly opposed to any attempt to start the transmitter without Snow, since for some time to come the Germans will be extremely suspicious of him and will in all probably put over every sort of snap (impulsive) question.  His history as the Doctor's (Major Ritter's) servant is so long that the danger of our answering snap questions incorrectly is very great (yes, indeed).  The objections, however, to enlisting Snow's (Arthur Owens') personal assistance seem to me not inconsiderable on legal grounds.

12.    There remains now the question of what, if any, action ought to be taken of our recommendation not to reopen the Snow (Arthur Owens) case is accepted.  It appears to be obvious that a hypothesis, however, good the evidence upon which it is based, is of little value unless it is subjected to every available test, and indeed it is our duty to our way of thinking to act in a judicial capacity towards Snow (Arthur Owens) and Robert his son, and to give them the opportunity of confirming or recruiting our hypothesis.  We therefore suggest that:

(i)    Snow's (Arthur Owens' son Robert) should seem to be asked for more information about the the incident at the Mars restaurant (he can incidentally be asked by his (Robert's fiancé) (girlfriend)

(ii)    Snow (Arthur Owens) should be seen and interrogated again about his Lisbon trip (He too incidentally can be asked about the G/Frie?? he has also to be seen about Mrs. Krafft's knowledge of his address at name made invisible Avenue under the name of name made invisible. Moreover he has asked for an officer to see him upon other matters.)

(iii)    Consideration be given to the position of Celery (Walter Dicketts, whom had cut off contact, in the meantime, with M.I.5!)


KV 2/451-3, page 35


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            With regard to (ii) (not copied )supra we do not of course intend to put our hypothesis in terms to Snow (Arthur Owens), but we do suggest that the position is exactly the same as it would have been if Sessler had been brought to this country and had told a story in accordance with our hypothesis, and we suggest therefore that Snow be re-interrogated on the same lines as he would undoubtedly have been had Sessler been in our custody.

B.1.a17.11.1941                                                                                Sgd. J.H. Marriott   and   J.M.A. Gwyer


AOB next, Deo volente, of course.

The next chapter 10c will deal with a 'final interrogation of Major Ritter of 31.7.1941!

How they could have got access to this secret German document of 1941, I do not know;

Possibly it originated from findings in Hamburg, after British troops occupied Hamburg, about the early days of May 1945?

Consequently, most likely, the foregoing has been reproduced after the war, and therefore, the genuine look-alike of the latter document is a post-war reconstruction; hence, making it, after all, a quite untrustworthy reference; as its signature being apparently false, as it belonged to Major Nikolaus Ritter's brother Hans!

My hypothesis: as towards the end will be proved, somewhere in the file series, Arthur Owens (Snow) was interrogated and asked whether the shown on the photo showed a known  person and whether he was the Doctor (Major Ritter), after consideration he concluded: no. The photograph they have got from the F.B.I. and shows Ritter's brother Hans. When the F.B.I. possess a photo of Hans, they also possess his signature. Just this signature, most likely, have been used as to make a stamp of it!

This stamp was used to authorise the next British, apparent, translation; but it was, recognisably, of Ritter's brother Hans!

Most likely, they might have thought or considered - that no one knew Ritter's real name, and his brother Hans' signature will do!

↓ Please digest what is referred to next. ↓




KV 2/451-3, page 36     (minute 1360b)

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AOB, In my perception this version of what occurred in Lisbon in February and March 1941; I cannot judge what the real mood of Major Ritter at the end of July 1941, he had been in a Military Hospital (Lazaret) after his crashing in the Mediterranean.

  Nevertheless, I consider it an unexpected chance to obtain an inside vision on what really might have happened.

Translating German documents in to English language is in some respect distorting the actual expressions used. Snow, for example, was  British Secret Service cover-name, which Arthur Owens himself might not have known; they might then have used Johnny O'Brien; I doubt they used Arthur Owens real name.


Major Ritter's Final report of the Snow (Arthur Owens) Case  (translation)

1.    When I (Major Ritter) in Lisbon on 14.2.1941 he immediately informed me that his sub-agent Celery (Walter Dicketts) who was coming by sea, was in his opinion suspect.  I pressed Snow (Arthur Owens) strongly on this point, asking on what grounds he suspected Celery (Walter Dicketts), and why, if he did so, he had taken the risk of bringing him to Lisbon.   Snow (Arthur Owens) replied that he had recently formed the impression, from a chance remark of Celery that he was acting in the interest of British authorities. He added that he had not dared to break off his relationship with Celery as to do so would have been regarded as a sign of guilt. He said that he had first met Celery approximately ten weeks before.

2.    I (Major Ritter) told Snow that I was not satisfied with his story and that he must, in his won interests, be absolutely honest with me. I explained to him (Arthur Owens) that if, as he said, a British agent had been in touch with him for ten weeks, it was practically certain that the authorities already knew enough about his own case to arrest him immediately, on his return. It was, I said, obvious that they (British Secret Service) had only allowed him to go to Lisbon at all in order  to gather final information against him through Celery (Walter Dicketts) (AOB: this latter estimation was damm correct!). Moreover, that was a grave question whether Snow's (Arthur Owens') sub-agent in South of Wales (G.W. = Gwilym Williams) and elsewhere and also name made invisible (Charles Eschborn in Manchester), with whom Snow (Arthur Owens) had recently been in touch, were not already implicated and perhaps under arrest.  I (Major Ritter) told Snow (Arthur Owens) plainly that I should have to consider seriously if it would be safe for me to allow him to return to England, seeing how much he (Arthur Owens) knew of my organisation and of me personally. I (Major Ritter) told him (Arthur Owens) that he was wholly in my power and that I should have no difficulty in liquidating his case promptly in Lisbon.

3.    Snow (Arthur Owens) was clearly very much frightened by this threat. While he was still in this amendable condition I pressed him with further questions and finally succeeded in extracting the following story from him:-

            Snow (Arthur Owens) had first met Celery (Walter Dicketts) some ten weeks ago in a public house. he was certain that this meeting was purely accidental.  In the course of conversation (während unseres Gesprächs), celery who was rather drunk, had confined to Snow (Arthur Owens) certain details of his previous career and the criminal record which prevented him from →(page 37)→ regaining his commission.

KV 2/451-3, page 37

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→ regaining his commission.  he expressed himself as very angry and dissatisfied with the attitude of the authorities towards him (Arthur Owens). For this reason Snow (Arthur Owens) continued to cultivate his acquaintance, seeing in him a possible recruit.  After a suitable interval, Snow (Arthur Owens) had made a tentative approach to Celery (Walter Dicketts). The latter accepted this so readily that Snow's (Arthur Owens') suspicions were aroused.  He (Arthur Owens) made careful enquiries about Celery (Walter Dicketts) and discovered the following facts.  What Celery (Walter Dicketts) had said about his suspicious career was perfectly true, but he was now employed by the authorities as a counter espionage agent.   His duties were to hang about bars and hotels in the London area and report to his superiors any suspicious persons that he met or conversations that the overheard.  For this he received his expenses and a salary of thirty shillings a week (AOB: the fact of the 30 shilling a week must be correct, as this sum we encountered several times in foregoing references). He was not satisfied with this position and was looking round to some means to improve it.

4.    Snow (Arthur Owens) the found himself in a serious predicament (dilemma). If he broke off his acquaintance with Celery (Walter Dicketts) there there was every reason to think that the latter would report slight suspicions which he had already formed to the authorities, since he would have nothing to gain by not doing so.  The alternative was to continue the acquaintance, despite the obvious dangers which would run by doing so.  This Snow (Arthur Owens) considered the safest course.  He was certain that he had not allowed Celery (Walter Dicketts) to have definite evidence against him or at most only the slightest. He (Arthur Owens) did not believe that Celery (Walter Dicketts)  had yet made any report to his superiors , or would do so before he had a clear case to present.. If he (Walter Dicketts) did his duty and simply reported his superiors, he would gain nothing; whereas, if he waited until he was able to present a complete case, he stood a chance of being congratulated, though  reproved for exceeding his instructions, and rewarded with his return of his commission.  Moreover, Snow (Arthur Owens) had allowed him to see that he himself had plenty of money and to guess from what source it came.  This had had visible effects on Celery (Walter Dicketts), who is an extremely grasping (selfish) man.  He (Walter Dicketts) also appeared genuinely impressed by what Snow (Arthur Owens) told him of the strength and efficiently of Germany. Snow (Arthur Owens) therefore formed the opinion that Celery (Walter Dicketts) despite his connection with the British authorities, could after all, if properly handled, be recruited by us (German Abwehr). What was wanted was that he should be →(page 38)→thoroughly frightened, thoroughly impressed and offered a financial reward more valuable then the return of his commission.

KV 2/451-3, page 38

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→thoroughly frightened, thoroughly impressed and offered a financial reward more valuable then the return of his commission.

5.    Having reached this conclusion, Snow (Arthur Owens) continued to encourage Celery (Walter Dicketts) and suggested to him that that he should go with him (Arthur Owens) on his forthcoming visit to Lisbon. He did not, however, for reasons mention these facts in his traffic, apart from one warning message which was not received at this end (?).   In the first place, the situation was complicated and difficult to express in telegraphic form without sending dangerously long messages.  Secondly, he was not in possession of the full facts until very shortly before he left for Lisbon.  Celery (Walter Dicketts) accepted Snow's (Arthur Owens') proposal that he should go to Lisbon, and was understood by the latter to have obtained his superiors' sanction by saying that, although he had to date obtained no evidence against Snow (Arthur Owens) himself, he suspected that this projected trip was not wholly for bona fide business purposes.

6.    Although Snow (Arthur Owens) told his story in a confused, disjointed  (incoherent) and apparently reluctant manner, after listening to it and questioning him closely, I was satisfied, particularly in view of my (Major Ritter)  long acquaintance with him (they met each other somewhere in 1936 in Hamburg, since) (AOB, this latter fact played in the mutual understanding a decisive role) that he was telling the truth so far as I he knew it. S The following immediate questions therefore arose:-

(a)    Had Snow (Arthur Owens) assessed Celery's (Walter Dicketts') position in the British organisation correctly?

(b)    Was Snow (Arthur Owens) right in saying that Celery (Walter Dicketts) had so far given only negative reports to his superiors?

c)    Was it certain that the British authorities had taken no action on these reports, despite their negative character?

d)    Was Snow (Arthur Owens) right in saying that celery could be bought?

7.    Questions (a) and (d) could only be answered after I had had an opportunity to see Celery myself (Major Ritter). I therefore decided to postpone my other engagements, although these were pressing, and remain in Lisbon until Celery (Walter Dicketts)     arrived.  As Celery's (Walter Dicketts') boat was overdue and there was some question whether one of our submarines might not have sunk her, I caused immediate enquiries as th her whereabouts to be made through the Lisbon Stelle (KOP). The ship was reported safe and on 21.2.1941 Celery arrived in Lisbon (via first Gibraltar).  I saw him (Walter Dicketts) on the same day and my first impression of him coincided exactly with what →(page 39)→Snow (Arthur Owens) had already told me.

KV 2.451-3, page 39

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→Snow (Arthur Owens) had already told me.  He (Walter Dicketts) had all the appearance of a crook (criminal) and of a man who would do anything for money.  he spoke often convincingly of being in low water financially and being compelled to accept work which was below his real capabilities.  Nothing, however, was said by Snow (Arthur Owens), Celery (Walter Dicketts) or me (Major Ritter) of the circumstances of his being employed by the British authorities.  This was on my express instructions. I wanted to interview Celery (Walter Dicketts) for the first time without doing so saying anything which would prejustice any subsequent decision that I wished to take.  Had I told him immediately that I knew him to be a British agent and had subsequently discovered either that he was incorruptible or that he was a more important man than Snow (Arthur Owens) had supposed, it would have been impossible to allow him to return to England with all the consequences that that would necessarily have had for Snow (Arthur Owens) himself.   On the other hand, so long as Celery (Walter Dicketts) did not know what Snow (Arthur Owens) had told me, I was free to act in whatever way seemed best in the light of my ready of Celery's (Walter Dicketts') character.

8.    This was my first impression of celery.  Clearly, it could only be confirmed by careful interrogation and observation of Celery (Walter Dicketts) over a period.  This could only be done in Germany (Hamburg). Moreover, if it were confirmed, we should have to exert ourselves to the full of flatter, frighten and impress him.  If it were not confirmed, it might be necessary to dispose of Celery (Walter Dicketts). For either of the purposes also Germany as soon as possible.  Snow (Arthur Owens) was to remain in Lisbon.  There would have been certain additional complications, which I wished to avoid, in having two people taken to Germany.  It was also clear that the circumstances might arise, as the result of Celery's (Walter Dicketts')  interrogation in which it would be more convenient for him to be separated from Snow (Johnny = Arthur Owens)

9.    These arrangements still left questions (b) end (c) unanswered. Celery (Walter Dicketts) himself was the only person who could answer (b); but, if he really occupied as minor a position in the British organisation as Snow (Arthur Owens) said, it did not seem that he would be better able than anyone else to guess the answer to (c). Besides, to extract from Celery (Walter Dicketts) the answer to (b) would have meant revealing to him my knowledge of his employment, which for rge reasons given below, I was reluctant to do. I also considered that, if →(page 40)→Celery (Walter Dicketts) should turn out to be a more important British agent or an incorruptible one, Snow (Arthur Owens) was to all intents lost already, but I should still have in Celery (Walter Dicketts) a valuable means of planting false information on the British, so long as he was unaware of the extent of my knowledge. If I had to lose Snow (Arthur Owens) I was very unwilling to forego this advance.  Moreover, it was plain (deutlich / klar) to me that I must expect sooner or later to lose Snow (Arthur Owens) in any case, no matter what Celery might do. 

KV 2/451-3, page 40

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→Celery (Walter Dicketts) should turn out to be a more important British agent or an incorruptible one, Snow (Arthur Owens) was to all intents lost already, but I should still have in Celery (Walter Dicketts) a valuable means of planting false information on the British, so long as he was unaware of the extent of my knowledge. If I had to lose Snow (Arthur Owens) I was very unwilling to forego this advance.  Moreover, it was plain (deutlich / klar) to me that I must expect sooner or later to lose Snow (Arthur Owens) in any case, no matter what Celery might do.  he had been working continuously for me since early 1936; he had been operating a transmitter since before the outbreak of war.  I had had in mind for more than a year that he could not reasonably expect to last much longer.  For those reasons I was willing to take the risk of not obtaining an absolutely definite answer to question (b), and gave instructions for Celery (Walter Dicketts) in Hamburg along the following lines. He was to be closely questioned about every detail of his past, particularly  since the outbreak of the war, and the circumstances of his meeting with Snow (Arthur Owens) but nothing was to be said to imply that we knew of his connection with the British.  I was certain, if he were really a British agent or some standing, he would not survive this interrogation. In that event, he would certainly have been employed since the war on other affairs that of Snow's (Arthur Owens'), and this fact would reveal itself by gaps or reticences in his story. If, alternatively, he were simply the minor agent described by Snow (Arthur Owens) I felt equally sure that his self-interest would have led him, as Snow (Arthur Owens) said, to make no report to his superiors,   secondly, every effort was to be during the visit to frighten Celery (Walter Dicketts) and to play upon his vanity (narcissism) and love of money. Thirdly, Celery (Walter Dicketts) was to be supplied with, and encouraged to think he had acquired for himself, the maximum amount of misleading information about general conditions in Germany, air raid damage, the extent of building activity in the docks and similar subjects.   (AOB, this latter notice must have been noticed after Walter Dicketts left Germany toward the last part of March 1941)

10.    As an additional precaution, I gave Snow (Arthur Owens) certain new instructions with regard to the use of the transmitter.  These would have enabled me to tell immediately whether the British were controlling the set, and if so, whether they were making Snow (Arthur Owens) continue to draft the message himself or whether they were running the set without his help.  In the former cause, I should know by the form of the message which were true and which false. In the latter case I should at any rate know where I was.

KV 2/451-3, page 41

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11.    The interrogation of Celery (Walter Dicketts) in Hamburg, the latter part of which I was able to attend myself, went as well as could be expected. I was satisfied myself, as nearly as one ever can in these matters, that the situation was substantially as Snow (Arthur Owens) had said.  I therefore made certain financial arrangements with a view to confirming Celery's (Walter Dicketts') loyalty to us and ensuring that he continued to keep his mouth shut about Snow (Arthur Owens).  The basis of these arrangements was that Celery should receive a few hundred pounds as an earnest of our goodwill and then be made dependent on Snow (Arthur Owens) for a much larger sum to be paid him in instalments. Obviously, Celery (Walter Dicketts) would only receive this sum if Snow (Arthur Owens) remained at liberty for long enough to hand it to him, over a period at least of some weeks; but if Celery (Walter Dicketts) would only receive this sum if Snow remained at liberty for long enough to hand it to him. over a period at least of some weeks; but if Celery (Walter Dicketts) postponed making a report to his superiors for such period. he would find it exceedingly difficult to make one at all, since he would have no convincing explanation for his delay.

12.    There remained only the possibility that the British authorities had taken some independent action on the basis of Celery's (Walter Dicketts') reports.  for two reasons it appeared most unlikely that they would have done, or at least that these enquiries had progressed very far, In the first place, no counter-espionage organisation is large enough to act on more than a small percentage of the informers' reports which they receive. Secondly, if they had had serious grounds for suspicion against Snow (Arthur Owens) it was unlikely that they would have allowed him to go to Lisbon with so trustworthy a man as Celery (Walter Dicketts) as his only companion. However, no matter what the true situation might be in that respect, I had taken every possible precaution to ensure that Snow's (Arthur Owens') would be kept alive on some terms or other advantageous to me. Even if it did collapse, I had still a great deal to gain from the false information planted on Celery (Walter Dicketts) by me and by Abteilung II (sabotage Referat), whose help I had enlisted on the political side.

13.    There was one further test which could be made.  It was barely possible that something in Celery's (Walter Dicketts') reports had made the British aware of Snow's (Arthur Owens') transmitter and enabled them to read the messages passed. If, but only if, they were in this position on 14.2.41 and able to take immediate action on what they heard, then one had to assume that they had discovered the identity and whereabouts of Leonhardt. Since Leonhardt's transmitter had since been operating without interruption, one would also → (page 42) → have to assume that Leonhardt was working under control.

KV 2/451-3, page 42

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→ have to assume that Leonhardt was working under control. To establish whether this were so or not, I arranged for the next agent dispatched to England (Karl Richter, KV 2/30..KV 2/32; PF 60301), to be instructed to contact Leonhardt in order to make him a routine payment and subsequently to report to us what the Leonhardt situation really was.  He was further instructed in the event of his being captured to say that he had been sent over exclusively to report on Leonhardt and with orders to return to Germany he had done so. The position would then be this; if Leonhardt were not controlled a satisfactory report would reach me (Major Ritter)  from the contacting agent.  If he were controlled the agent would be arrested, and the British faced with the choice either to allow the agent to return, or to keep him and thereby acknowledge what Leonardt's true position was. Either way, I should know where I (Major Ritter) stood.

14.    This was the position when Snow (Arthur Owens) and Celery (Walter Dicketts) returned to England together on 21.3.1941. I had by this time already left for the Near East (Rommel's DAK and with Lazlo Almásy) and was therefore out of touch with the day to day developments of the case. On 21.4.21 I received news from Hamburg that a message had come from Snow to the effect that he was too ill to continue his work.  This had an ominous sound, though there was as yet no reason to suppose untrue. About the middle of of May, I was informed by Roboter (= German cover-name for: Karl Richter, KV 2/30..KV 2/32; PF 60301) , the agent selected to contact Leonhardt, had been safely landed but that so far no message had come in from him (Leonhardt).  It was, however, too early to draw and deductions from this fact. On 1.6.1941 I received from (Herbert) Wichmann (Leiter Ast Hamburg during almost the war) the surprising news that Celery had arrived again in Lisbon, apparently alone, and was asking for (Georg) Sessler (alias George Sinclair).  Dr. Schneider, who was handling the Snow (Arthur Owens) case in my absence immediately sent Sessler to Lisbon to fetch Celery (Walter Dicketts) and arranged for a complete investigation of his case to take place as soon as he arrived in Hamburg. I gave instructions to Wichmann that Celery (Walter Dicketts)  was to be treated with the greatest caution and suspicion both before and during this enquiry, the latter stages of which I hoped to be able to attend myself (Major Ritter).  On the face of it, Celery's (Walter Dicketts') behaviour was suspicious. On 16.4.1941 a message had been received from Snow's (Arthur Owens') operator, Reed, asking whether he should try to contact Celery (Walter Dicketts) and hand over the control of the transmitter to him. We replied telling him to use his own discretion (decision).  From this it appeared that Celery (Walter Dicketts) was not in close touch with Snow (Arthur Owens) since reed seemed → (page 43) → uncertain whether he could find him. The continued silence of the transmitter further suggested that Reed, for whatever reason, had been unable or unwilling to contact Celery (Walter Dicketts).

KV 2/451-3, page 43

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→ uncertain whether he could find him. The continued silence of the transmitter further suggested that Reed, for whatever reason, had been unable or unwilling to contact Celery (Walter Dicketts). Yet here, six weeks later, was Celery arriving in Lisbon alone a difficult even dangerous thing to do since, this time, he had no convenient excuse to offer his employers.  This could only mean that he was wholly out of touch with Snow (Arthur Owens), and his transmitter.  Why should he allow himself to lose touch in this way, when if he where playing straight (Ehrlich) with us, he had so much to gain by continuing the acquaintance?

15.    These suspicions were confirmed by the report brought back by Sessler.  he informed Dr. Schneider that Celery (Walter Dicketts) had refused to return to Hamburg and had made the alternative proposal that Sessler should go back with him to England in order to sell the information which he possessed to the British, in return for which he was to receive a sum of money and a free passage to America.  Sessler had affected to fall in with this proposal and was in fact, in favour of going through with it, on the grounds that it would provide him with a convenient means of entry into America.  A similar proposal had already been made on Celery's (Walter Dicketts') earlier visit, when I had considered the possibility of planting further false information on the British using Celery (Walter Dicketts) to introduce Sessler to them in the caharcter of a traitor.  This idea had been shelved as it would only have been worth while to carry through if we had been certain that Snow's (Arthur Owens') case was already closed.

16.    Only two deductions could be made from Sessler's story.  First, that our manoeuvres in Hamburg had been less successful than I had hoped and that Celery (Walter Dicketts) was still acting in the British interest. Secondly, that he was probably a British agent of higher standing than had previously supposed, since he had been allowed to undertake two independent missions. In these circumstances, it seemed more than likely that our whole previous view of Snow's (Arthur Owens') case was mistaken.  If Celery (Walter Dicketts) were entrusted British agent, whose loyalty we had not succeeded in buying, it was certain that he had made a report on Snow (Johnny the German alias of Arthur Owens).  Immediately on his return from Lisbon, if indeed he had not done before. Either way, I was obliged to assume that Snow's (Arthur Owens') → (page 44) →the few messages sent after his return from Lisbon genuine or false.

KV 2/451-3, page 44

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→the few messages sent after his return from Lisbon genuine or false.  This is a point which must remain undecided; but curiously enough the deduction to be made is the same in either case.  If Snow (Arthur Owens) is genuinely ill, the chances of British obtaining anything from him by interrogation are clearly reduced.  If the messages were false, they can only mean that the British, though not in a position to carry on the (W/T) set at the time hoped to open it up again in the future.  If, as seems likely, it was the necessary background which they lacked it is safe to assume, since the set is still silent, that Snow (Arthur Owens) has not yet talked.  For these reasons I am of the opinion that Charlie (Charles Eschborn of Manchester) and G.W. (Welshman Gwilym Williams) are still undetected.  from the former we have heard nothing as is natural since Snow (Arthur Owens) is his only link with us (German Abwehr).  The latter has no reopened his line of communication through the Spanish channel (Miguel Del Pozo). So far as can be judged from his traffic and from other reports he is free and not acting under control. The possibility that he is controlled does, however, remain and his reports are not therefore accepted except where they can be checked by those of another agent.

17.    In the early part of July an opportunity occurred to mislead the British further with regard of Snow (Arthur Owens), The Lisbon Stelle (KOP) was then engaged in planting a double-agent on the British and applied to me for some true Intelligence information which could be used to establish reputation.  I supplied them with a photograph of Celery (Walter Dicketts) and a version of his first visit to Lisbon which was true except in so far that his dealings with us were exaggerated and Snow's (Arthur Owens') name wholly suppressed. So far this st??? has produced no reaction; but its only effect must be to course a certain suspicion of Celery (Walter Dicketts) in the minds of the British. This will in return react favourably on Snow (Arthur Owens) since it is clear that, if he is in prison (23th April 1941 since), it is mainly or wholly on the strength of Celery's (Walter Dicketts').

18.    I recently initiated a last attempt to discover the exact details of Snow's (Arthur Owens') fate.  I had obtained from him in Lisbon an address through which he could be contacted indirectly in the case of danger. Arrangements have now been completed for him to be contacted in this way.  no report has, however, yet been received. Until this report does come the matter must → (page 45) → position as one of our agents was known to the British.

KV 2/451-3, page 45

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→ position as one of our agents was known to the British. Evidently. since his transmitter had closed down, the British were not proposing to employ him as a controlled agent.  Why they had not taken this opportunity could only be guessed - perhaps because they had not succeeded in extracting enough information from Snow (Arthur Owens)  to make it possible. In any case, I could have no doubt on this hypothesis, that Snow (Arthur Owens) was in prison.

16.    It was, however, barely possible that what Celery (Walter Dicketts) had done was to remain silent about Snow (Arthur Owens) for long enough to draw his money and had then discovered that it was too late to amke any report to his employers, if he were not to fall under suspicion himself.  In this event, it was difficult to explain his second visit to Lisbon, except on the assumption that he had fabricated some story of his connection with Sessler which did not implicate Snow (Arthur Owens) and had convinced his superiors of its truth.  In one sense this accorded better with my (Major Ritter's)  opinion of Celery's (Walter Dicketts') character; but it was difficult to believe that even the British would have used any but a trustworthy agent on two delicate missions abroad.

17.    It was now necessary to consider the repercussions of Snow's (Arthur Owens')  capture on our other agents. It felt tolerable certain that Leonhardt was safe, since he could only have been discovered had the British actually been in control of Snow's (Arthur Owens') traffic at the material date.  Moreover, there had so far been, and has never been since, and report Roboter (alias of Karl Richter; KV 2/30..KV 2/32 PF 60301)  This I regard as a favourable sign.  Had the British been in control of Leonhardt's set (including its code!), it is incredible that they should have taken the risk of making no move with Roboter (Karl Richter) in the light of what they knew of his instruction.  The two agents Charlie (Charles Eschborn) and G.W. (Welshman Gwilym Williams)  are, however in another category, for Snow (Arthur Owens)? knows sufficient about both of them to procure their capture at any time. If Snow (Arthur Owens) is in prison (which he was until August 1944) their safety depends simply on his not breaking down under interrogation. But Snow (Arthur Owens) is an experienced agent and one, in my experience, abnormally difficult to interrogate. Moreover, as I pointed out above, the fact that the British have made no attempt so far to use Snow's (Arthur Owens') set (AOB, Mr. Masterman came up with this suggestion after Arthur Owens was kept in captivity    (R265)   (R265return)) suggests that they have obtained very little from him. This naturally raises the question at what point was Snow (Arthur Owens) arrested (we know it was effected under HO (Alien) Order 18B) - i.e. were → (page 46) →remain in some doubt, though I have personally no doubt that is substantially as I have stated above. 

KV 2/451-3, page 46

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remain in some doubt, though I have personally no doubt that is substantially as I have stated above.

            Berlin, 31.7.41.                   

Sgd. By a Hans Ritter, whereas we know that his Christian name being: Nikolaus. AOB: was there nowhere in England whom have noticed this nonsense?  Nikolaus Ritter had a brother Hans, but he never could have produced this statement.


AOB: There are contradictions within this statement, comparing Arthur Owens' statements of end of March 1941 and beyond and the book [5] Deckname Dr. Rantzau. Both Ritter's 1972 book and Arthur Owens statements were quite coherent; in contrast to what is stated here.    I cannot judge what Ritter's motives might have been. What we know - he left quite shortly before from a Lazaret (Military Hospital) as he suffered an airplane crash in the Mediterranean (his fault).        What I expect, is: that Major Nikolaus Ritter left the Hospital and was ordered to Berlin to provide his statement. One reason might have been, that this statement was written from memory; and no one asked critical questions, maybe the outcome would have been a bit different.  Maybe, played another aspect, Major Nikolaus Ritter was about to start another military career - as he was about to command a Flak regiment, which he successfully did up to the bitter end. He even gained to become an Obstlt. (Lt-Colonel) 

It is, in my perception, strange that they consider a Final Report on behalf of Ritter, somewhere in November 1941; how did they obtained this translated copy? Or, were these papers collected and selected after the war and thereby being mixed up? 


KV 2/452-1, page 1

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Selected Historical papers from the "Snow" (Arthur Owens) case. KV 2/452  PF 45241

KV 2/452-1, page 4 (partially)



Snow's Movements up to September 4th, 1939.

Address in 1936 -            Sloane Avenue

September 23rd,- 29th, 1936 - Visit to Germany.

October 1st, 1936 New address  words being made invisible, at Brixton

November 21st, 1936 - Back from another visit to Germany.

October, 1937  - New address - name made invisible at Streatham

October, 1937 to February 14th, 1938 - At some time during this period Arthur Owens was in America.

March, 1938 New address - Grosvenor Court London Road  Morden, Surrey.

July 28th, 1938 - He visited Germany with his (first wife) Jessie.

Obed Hussein (Subject of P.F.I. 754)

September 17th - 23rd, 1938,                       Visited Germany.

October 25th, 1938                                             "           "

November 3rd, 1938                                          "           "

January 1st - 6th, 1939                                       "            "   

April 22nd -28th, 1939                                       "             "   

June 17th - 22nd, 1939                                       "             "

August 11th - 24th, 1939                                    "            "

August 24thm 1939 - He went to stay with Surbiton.

September 4th, 1939    -                                    Arrested.  


Henri Doebler @ Duarte

            Doebler is a man of 40 years of age, born in Hamburg and has an Argentine passport. During the last war (1914-18)  he was an officer in the German Army in Palestine. He speaks Spanish, French, German and English, but does not speak English very well and is rather conscious of this fact as he says it handicaps him slightly in his work.

              He is 6' 0" or 6'i"tall, broad shoulders, clean shaven, blue eyes, silver grey hair,  he spent the last 18 years in the Argentine and is a man who must at one time have had considerable amount of money.  He has done a certain amount of yacht racing in south America and knows Sopwith.  He returned to Germany in 1939 and went to see his brother in Hamburg. His brother i.e. employed in some decoding department in Hamburg and recruited Doebler as an agent. Doebler then went to Lisbon for three weeks in January, 1940 after which he returned to Lisbon in April 1940 and has been there ever since.

            He frequents the bars and hotels in Lisbon where English and American people go. ..... 

       AOB: we will skip some and continue with the final series.


KV 2/453-1, page 1

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KV 2/453

Selected Historical

Papers from the

"Snow" (Arthur Owens) case

PF 45241

(this number still can be used as to find all accompanied file series; though, this number does not tell you which particular file you are looking for or at)


KV 2/453-1, page 17

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The transmitter - receiver suitcase set which was used by Arthur Owens

Sadly, albeit that an envelope noticed including schematics nothing is found, also the translated description used to notice the British equivalent types.


KV 2/453-1, page 22

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Receiver schematic, with British designation R.S.S.1 date 29.8.40

AOB: It therefore likely, that it must have been brought to England via Arthur Owens' (Snow's) visits to Belgium in early 1940; thus before the Germans did start their successful invasion of Western Europe on 10 May 1940.

KV 2/453-1, page 24

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Redrawn schematic of the transmitter, British designation R.S.S.2

KV 2/453-1, page 26

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Designated R.S.S.3   Keying Characteristic

AOB, the 100 Hz ripple, might well have had an advantage, as this extra hum designation might have, under difficult circumstances, supported recognition and reception.

As to allow you to optimally understand the working principles of this set, I have also reproduced the circuit descriptions.

KV 2/453-1, page 28

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KV 2/453-1, page 29

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Description page 2

KV 2/453-1, page 3

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Description page 3


We have reached the final pages of the many page we went through.

I had shortly before forecasted that it would take me at least a month or a bit more.

However, it went differently.

The very reason might have been within the title of all the Arthur Owens (Snow) related: Selection of papers ..


A selection means - that papers have been bundled and like being weeded as well; resulting in a mixture of subjects - and the necessary selection being made.

We have to live with it.

However, counting all the countless many bits and pieces, the Arthur Owens (Snow) constitute together an unprecedented series of reference,

which you likely will nowhere find.

My final thought: I am grateful that we have been able to keep matters been flowing; albeit, that due to the huge number details, some might have quit before the closure of this

Arthur Owens (Snow) Survey.

We have nearly reached now the closure of the Arthur Owens (Snow) case



However, some pictures were found at the final end of the entire files series.

Which, is, as a realy tasty bonbon !


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KV 2/453-2, page 38

In my perception, after consideration, I tend to believe that this set (also valid for the other photos below) once had been designed and build by Ast Hamburg.


Because Arthur Owens (Snow) was an agent on behalf of Referat I L in Hamburg, which was headed, since 1936, until spring 1941, by first Hptm. (Captain) later Major Nikolaus Ritter (alias Dr. Rantzau)



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KV 2/453-2, page 26

This blue-print like figures, is the panels on both side-ends of this quite miniature transmitter module.

What is entirely lacking, is any information on the accompanied receiver, which undoubtedly once must have existed.

On the left-hand side we notice the antenna terminals.

On the right-hand side, the wave-tuning, a modern expression would be: frequency tuning of with the table on (page_13)    page_26



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KV 2/453-2, page 31

Up on the right-hand side, we notice the Morse key, which type had been used about the early 1940s, and why not being employed since about 1938? It isn't a typical German like type, nor, that it was employed elsewhere in German regular services.

One of their objectives might once have been, not too look alike German stuff.

Their aren't many German known espionage sets fully relying upon VFO (variable frequency oscillator) control.



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KV 2/453-2, page 36

Please notice the upper photograph and notice the according scale which relates to the table at the end of this document  (T270)     (T270return)

What I do not understand, is, that they used (employed) valve types of the late 1920 or early 1930

albeit that the PA valve generated approx. 3 W antenna power, quite common in late 1939s German spy sets; to be operated from East England towards German controlled territory.

Though, it is of a rather sound and wonderful concept, of which the designer must have possessed a penchant to beauty!

Maybe you might recognise in the upper photo between the two valves a 'plastic' like screw; and you view then what is underneath it, you might recognise a dust-core like coil mounting; a typical German coil type. 




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KV 2/453, page 10 (albeit that it is being reproduced several times

AOB: I  admire the boldness with which the Hamburg technicians designed their gear

Schematic has been redrawn on 19.1.39

At least I know that most of the war Major Trautmann (KV 2/2751, PF 602699) headed the I i section of which the latter was its Leiter.

He himself a radio HAM already before the war, might have brought in some ideas, hypothetically, of course, as it is an estimation.

First:    It provided a free running VFO instead of a quartz crystal controlled frequency course.

But but what attracts me most - it is the sound way the antenna current measurement being picked up; maybe because I am, myself, for more than 60 years a radio HAM.   



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KV 2/453-2, page_13

The one creating once this table, might have lacked the expertise to understand what  6.4 to 4.2 means; which should be read for: 6.4 MHz to 4.2 MHz.

This table needs to be used to tune at the operational frequency (wave-length) in respect to the scale dial shown, at page KV 2/453-2,   page_26

(T270)      (T270return)



AOB, I would like to make some personal comments on files series with a title like: Selected historical Papers from the "Snow" case

After all,  I need to point: that selections implies always skipping references.

Apparently, all so-called 'minute sheets' weren't reproduced; which, regularly, provide a rather interesting inside vision, particularly in regard to personal considerations and views.

Another disadvantage of the way selections were made, is that sometimes the coherence is lacking.

For example: A document where, dated on 17 November 1941, an assessment is made with the notice that at the end the reader will find attached a translation of Major Ritter's statement  (apparently, but not there mentioned, on 31.7.41, in Berlin)

Though, no comment or information is provided as to how it had been possible to possess a secret German document already before November 1941 (and beyond the end of the war).

Then the, curious discovery by myself, that this latter statement had been signed by Hans Ritter; whereas his Christian name was actually Nikolaus! (Nikolaus had a brother Hans)

It is noticed  - that it concerned a translation, though, apparently signed by Hans Ritter which, instead, should have red - (Nikolaus) Ritter (Major)! (U400)  (U400return)

AOB: after some thoughts some hours later, an option popped up in my mind: The foregoing U400 ↑ hyperlink is bringing you to the reference in which Ritter's brother Hans is dealt with in respect to a F.B.I. photo of Hans, when they possess a photograph of Hans Ritter, then they must also possess a copy of Hans' signature! Might, the British have made a stamp copy of it and has they stamped it under their (dubious) translation?

All this "smells", in my perception, quite too much of some form of a falsification or historical bending, if so, how much may we trust of it - that it after all might have been a work of 'cutting and pasting' where it suites?

Or, was the entire a mixing-up of wartime and post-war series of materials?

(V450)    (V450return)

Why my critics? Because the line of Ritter's statement of 31 July 1941: is definitely not in line with Arthur Owens' (Snow's) statements, which were, nevertheless, quite well in line with what was pointed within [5] Ritter's book Deckname Dr. Rantzau; by Nikolaus Ritter, of 1972; published at a time when the wartime M.I.5 files series couldn't be accessed freely.

This, quite critical notice, does not imply, that we, nevertheless, have had access to a most interesting collection of references!



I don't trust the British document of late November 1941 and the so-called translation of a report about Ritter's statement taken at Berlin on 31.7.41.

Quoting now from [19] Nigel West's and Madoc Roberts book: Snow ...

page 172

After the German surrender M.I.5 conducted a lengthy search among captured information about the double-cross spies, and one item, a report written by Nikolaus Ritter dated 31 July 1941.


AOB: what I, after all, should add is - that I was very content with Nigel West's book on Snow (Arthur Owens). In particular the pages in his introduction, where many cover-names had been explained what their really name had been. It carried my reference [19] 

However, what is wondering me quite, is, the very fact that Nigel West did not notice the rather delicate matters around the actual fact of Ritter's apparent statement of 31.5.41 - and the notice that on a reference from 17.11.41 that they notice that at the end is attached Ritter's statement which, actually, had been captured after the end of the war; and which clearly had been signed by a Hans Ritter, which was Ritter's brother Hans. This is downgrading a document to a kind of falsified reference!


Thank you, truly, for your, almost, 5 months lasting patience!



By Arthur O. Bauer