WO_311_1195_0046_r72

Sidney Smith left his memorandum, known as a “chit,” with the Mazzoni family. It was common for escapees to leave statements concerning help received with their protectors. A chit could later be presented to the Allies by the Italians as evidence when requesting compensation.

“To any British Officer:–

“This is to certify that Signalman Smith, Sidney Seymour, No. 2372205 stayed at this house (Mazzoni, Montelparo) from 2nd. November 1943 to 27th. February 1944 both dates inclusive less eight days and received the best of treatment.

“Signed. Sidney S. Smith
No. 2372205
Signalman”

At the bottom of the sheet, in another person’s handwriting, is this additional note:

“The above mentioned was at this house until the 21st March when he was killed by fascists.”

The last sentence is signed, but the signature is not readable.

The Interviews

The following interviews were conducted in 1945–46 by the Special Investigation Branch (SIB) of the Royal Military Police in the course of a thorough inquiry into the death of escaped POW Sidney Smith.

The interviews together create a vivid, disturbing picture of the soldier’s apprehension and murder on March 21, 1944. But the identities of the Germans and fascist collaborators who are responsible for Sidney’s death are never discovered.

In addition to implication of the Nazi SS in the murder, the interview with Gino Ferretti indicates that there was a further suspect in this murder—”Bascioni from Belmonte,” said to operate under notorious fascist Settimio Roscioli.

There are conflicting details in Argeo Lupi’s two interviews regarding Sidney’s death. The interviews were conducted in the prison at Ascoli Piceno. Argeo Lupi was apparently being held there for involvement in the death of a civilian.

Credit for the research of this post and “Sidney Seymour Smith—A Mystery Solved” belongs to veteran researcher Brian Sims. Without his help this story would not have have been brought to light from the collections of the British National Archives.

Giuseppe Mazzoni’s Account

CONTRA SANTA MARIA 32.

Statement of:-
MAZZONI Giuseppe, farmer,
aged 42 years,
son of Eugenio,
residing at CONTRADA SANTA MARIA 32,
MONTELPARO.

Who states:-

On the 2nd of November 1943 a man came to my farm and told me that he was an escaped British prisoner of war, and that he had escaped from the concentration camp at SFORZACOSTA. He remained at my home and I and my family, came to know him as ‘Giorgio’, and during his stay with me, he gave his particulars as SIDNEY S SMITH, CAROLSIDE, OLD DALNOTTAR ROAD, OLD KILPATRICK, DUMBARTONSHIRE, SCOTLAND.

About the middle of March 1944, ‘Giorgio’ told me that owing to the fact that other escaped prisoners of war who were in hiding in the locality had been arrested and shot, he had decided to endeavor to reach ROME, in order to regain the Allied line.

On the morning of the 21st March 1944, I left my farm to pay a visit to MONTELPARO. I arrived back at my farm in the evening of the same day and was informed by my son Dante that about 4 pm. in the afternoon, two men who were dressed in civilian clothes, had come to my farm and after having spoken to ‘Giorgio’ in English they had left together with ‘Giorgio’, in the direction of MONTELPARO.

About 9 am. the following morning, the 22nd March, 1944 I again went to MONTELPARO, and when I was about 500 mitres past the Church of SANTA MARIA, I saw the body of a man lying in the centre of the road. The body was lying face upwards and I recognised it as being the body of ‘Giorgio.’ I saw that the head was mutilated by numerous bullet wounds and recognition was difficult due to a large amount of blood covering the face. There was also a bullet wound in the chest. The body was dressed in the clothing I had given to him, these being, a light blue jacket, light blue woollen jersey, black and white checked trousers, and British Military boots.

I then went to the Comune in MONTELPARO and informed them of what I had found. I was told that they were aware of the circumstances and that they were attending to the matter. I then returned home.

About three or four days afterward I was sent for by the Appuntato of SANTA VITTORIA, and I was ordered to make a statement. This I did, but the facts were not exactly true, as I was informed that if I told the truth the Fascists would burn my farm down.

After the liberation, I was sent for by the Maresciallo of SANTA VITTORIA, and to whom I related the true facts of the incident.

Shortly after the shooting, I was handed by a person named TIRABASSI Alfonso, a pair of spectacles which I recognised as being the property of Giorgio. These spectacles were blood stained and one of the lens was broken, TIRABBASI told me that he had found them near to where the body was lying. These spectacles I now hand to Sergeant ANDERTON and they have been marked A.I. in my presence.

I have heard since that the Fascist BASCIONI, of BELMONTE PICENO was involved in the shooting.

This statement has been read over to me. It is true and correct.

Signed:- His X Mark.

MAZZONI Giuseppe.

Statement taken in Italian, read over and his mark witnessed by Official Interpreter PANICCIA Claudio, in the presence of Sergeants ANDERTON and MOTTRAM, both of 60 Section, Special Investigation Branch, C.M. Police, at MONTELPARO, on the 25th July, 1945.

I certify that the above statement is a true translation of the original to the best of my knowledge and ability.

Signed:- PANICCIA Claudio.

I certify that I have examined the original statement and that the above is a true translation.

Signed:- TUCCI Sergio.

L.P./.

mazzoni-1

First page of Dante Mazzoni’s statement

Account of Giuseppe Mazzoni’s Son, Dante

Dante Mazzoni’s statement to the Royal Military Police was written in Italian. The translation below is by Anne Copley.

CONTRADA SANTA MARIA 32

Declaration of:
Mazzoni, Dante, contadino [farmer], aged 19 years,
son of Giuseppe, resident at CONTRADA SANTA
MARIA 32, MONTELPARO

Who says:

On 2nd November 1943 a man came to our farm and said to my father that he was an escaped English prisoner of war. He remained at our farm and we came to know him as GIORGIO.

Towards the afternoon of 21st March 1944, I returned to the farm from the fields and I saw Giorgio, who was sitting outside the house. I also noticed two men, dressed in civilian clothes, who were about 100 metres away from me, walking towards our house along the road from the direction of the church of SANTA MARIA.

The two men went up to Giorgio and started talking to him in English. The two men and Giorgio then entered the hosue and I followed them.

The two men asked for food. This was given to them, and one started to eat whilst the other watched Giorgio, who was washing. After the first one had finished eating, he went to stand close to Giorgio and the man who had previously been watching Giorgio sat down and began to eat.

One of the men spoke to me in bad Italian and he told me that he was a lieutenant in the English army and he too was an escaped prisoner of war, who was trying to rejoin the Allied lines, and that he wanted Giorgio to accompany him. He also asked me if I knew where were the other escaped prisoners.

We asked Giorgio if he wanted to take a bit of food with him, at which he said No! But after he decided to keep some.

Before leaving the house with the two others, Giorgio told me that he knew that they were English, that I wasn’t to be afraid and that the men were his friends. Then Giorgio and the two men left the house and walked to the fields towards DEL GATTO’s farm.

One of the men was about 35, about 1.85 metres tall, strong body, a very ugly face, black hair, clean-shaven and dark complexion. He wore a dark overcoat, black beret, dark trousers with brown stripes and black Italian military shoes.

The second man was about 30, 1.70 metres tall, stocky, round-faced, dark brown hair, clean-shaven with a red complexion. He wore a dark brown overcoat, trousers, dark brown with light brown stripes and yellow shoes.

I will be able to recognise these two men if I see them again.

This declaration has been read to me and it is true and correct.

Signed:- Mazzoni Dante

Statement taken in Italian, read over and signature witnessed by Official Interpreter PANICCIA Claudio, in the presence of Sergeants ANDERTON and MOTTRAM, both of 60 Section, Special Investigation Branch, C.M. Police, at MONTELPARO, on the 25th July, 1945.

I certify that the above statement is a true translation of the original to the best of my knowledge and ability.

Signed:- PANICCIA Claudio.

I certify that I have examined the original statement and that the above is a true translation.

Signed:- TUCCI Sergio.

L.P./.

Account of Alfonso Tirabassi

CONTRA SANTA MARIA 29.

Statement of:-

TIRABASSI Alfonso, farmer, aged 37 years
son of Nicola,
residing at CONTRA SANTA MARIA 29,
MONTELPARO

Who states:-

On the 21st March 1944, two escaped prisoners of war had lunch at my house. One of these two prisoners I knew by name as GIORGIO, and who was living at that time at the farm of MAZZONI.

I asked GIORGIO if he wished to stay at my farm, but he stated that he wished to return to the farm of MAZZONI, as the following day he was intending to leave this district. About 1 pm. in the afternoon, GIORGIO and the other prisoner left my house. On my return home on the evening of the same day, I was informed that GIORGIO had been arrested and shot by a party of Fascists near to the Church of SANTA MARIA.

On the following day, the 22nd March 1944, about 7 am. I was walking along the road to MONTELPARO. When I had walked about 500 metres past the church of SANTA MARIA, I saw the body of GIORGIO lying face upwards in the road. There was a bullet wound in one of the eyes, also a wound in the nostrils and at the base of the skull. There were also several wounds in the chest.

Near to the body I found a pair of spectacles, one of the lens of which was broken. I recognised these spectacles as being the property of GIORGIO. I took possession of them, and some time later I handed them to a neighbouring farmer named MAZZONI.

This statement has been read over to me. It is true and correct.

Signed:- TIRABASSI Alfonso.

Statement taken in Italian, read over and signature witnessed by Official Interpreter PANICCIA Claudio, in the presence of Sergeants ANDERTON and MOTTRAM, both of 60 Section, Special Investigation Branch, C.M. Police, at MONTELPARO, on the 23th August 1945.

I certify that the above statement is a true translation of the original to the best of my knowledge and ability.

Signed:- PANICCIA Claudio.

P.F./.

Augusta Viozzi’s Statement

VIOZZI Augusta, aged 47 years,
daughter of Giuseppe,
residing at CONTRA SANTA MARIA 31.
MONTELPARO

Who states:-

On the 21st March 1944, about 4.30 p.m., two men came to our farm. Both of these men were dressed in civilian clothes, and I recognised one of the men as the prisoner ‘Giorgio’, who was living at the farm of MAZZONI.

‘Giorgio’ asked for a drink of water, and I brought a jug of water and a glass from the house. After ‘Giorgio’ had had a drink he took hold of the jug and struck the other man on the head with it. The two men then began to fight and at this time I went to a nearby house.

I did not see ‘Giorgio’ again after this. The man who was with ‘Giorgio’ had dark straight hair, blue eyes, and large teeth.

This statement has been read over to me. It is true and correct.

HER X MARK

Statement taken in Italian, read over and her mark witnessed by Official Interpreter PANICCIA Claudio, in the presence of Sergeants ANDERTON and MOTTRAM, both of 60 Section, Special Investigation Branch, C.M. Police, at MONTELPARO, on the 21th August, 1945.

I certify that the above statement is a true translation of the original to the best of my knowledge and ability.

Signed:- PANICCIA Claudio.

P.F./.

Account of Augusta Viozzi’s Son, Giuseppe

CONTRA SANTA MARIA 31.

Statement of:-

VIOZZI Giuseppe, farmer, aged 16 years,
son of Constantino
residing at CONTRA SANTA MARIA 31.
MONTELPARO

Who states:-

At about 4.30 pm. on the 21st March 1944, I was in the stable belonging to the farm, when I saw three men walking in the direction of our farm. The three men were dressed in civilian clothes, and the remaining two came into the farmyard. I recognised one of these two men as an escaped prisoner of war, who was living at the farm of MAZZONI, and whom I knew by name as GIORGIO.

At this time Giorgio asked for a drink of water, my mother then came out of the house with a jug of water and a glass, and gave Giorgio a drink. After Giorgio had drunk, he took the jug from my mother and struck the other man on the head with the jug. The two men then began to fight, and as I was frightened I went into the house.

The man who fought with Giorgio appeared to me to be a German. He was about 30 years of age, about 1.80 metres in height, of broad build, dark brown hair, fresh complexion, and clean shaven. He was wearing a maroon coloured overcoat, and dark trousers. I do not think I would be able to recognise this man if I saw him again.

This statement has been read over to me. It is true and correct.

Signed:- VIOZZI Giuseppe.

Statement taken in Italian, read over and signature witnessed by Official Interpreter PANICCIA Claudio, in the presence of Sergeants ANDERTON and MOTTRAM, both of 60 Section, Special Investigation Branch, C.M. Police, at MONTELPARO, on the 21th August, 1945.

I certify that the above statement is a true translation of the original to the best of my knowledge and ability.

Signed:- PANICCIA Claudio.

P.F./.

Account of Alfonso Tirabassi

CONTRA SANTA MARIA 29.

Statement of:-

TIRABASSI Alfonso, farmer, aged 37 years
son of Nicola,
residing at CONTRA SANTA MARIA 29,
MONTELPARO

Who states:-

On the 21st March 1944, two escaped prisoners of war had lunch at my house. One of these two prisoners I knew by name as GIORGIO, and who was living at that time at the farm of MAZZONI.

I asked GIORGIO if he wished to stay at my farm, but he stated that he wished to return to the farm of MAZZONI, as the following day he was intending to leave this district. About 1 pm. in the afternoon, GIORGIO and the other prisoner left my house. On my return home on the evening of the same day, I was informed that GIORGIO had been arrested and shot by a party of Fascists near to the Church of SANTA MARIA.

On the following day, the 22nd March 1944, about 7 am. I was walking along the road to MONTELPARO. When I had walked about 500 metres past the church of SANTA MARIA, I saw the body of GIORGIO lying face upwards in the road. There was a bullet wound in one of the eyes, also a wound in the nostrils and at the base of the skull. There were also several wounds in the chest.

Near to the body I found a pair of spectacles, one of the lens of which was broken. I recognised these spectacles as being the property of GIORGIO. I took possession of them, and some time later I handed them to a neighbouring farmer named MAZZONI.

This statement has been read over to me. It is true and correct.

Signed:- TIRABASSI Alfonso.

Statement taken in Italian, read over and signature witnessed by Official Interpreter PANICCIA Claudio, in the presence of Sergeants ANDERTON and MOTTRAM, both of 60 Section, Special Investigation Branch, C.M. Police, at MONTELPARO, on the 23th August 1945.

I certify that the above statement is a true translation of the original to the best of my knowledge and ability.

Signed:- PANICCIA Claudio.

P.F./.

John-Meyers-2_r72

First page of John Meyers statement

The Account of Fellow Escaped Prisoner John Meyers

“The killing of Sgmn George Sydney Smith. Royal Corps of Signals.

“address of above mentioned exPOW.
‘Carolside’
Kilportmarnock. Glasgow
Scotland

“The A/M. [above mentioned] was staying at a house by the name of MAZZONI. Santa Maria Montelparo. The house next to where I was living.

“On the evening of the 21st March 1944 two SS. men in civilians went to his house and demanded in perfect English where the prisoner was staying; stating that they were English parachutists who were trying to get all the exPOWs behind the lines. Naturally the farm people thought this was very official and asked them if they weren’t going to take John the leader of the patriots meaning me. Therefore they called their 7 comrades who were waiting up the lane. They took Smith and show him in 4-6 rounds near the church S. MARIA MONTELPARO. Also they came to the house of Tidei where I was staying and opened fire. I was lucky enough to escape by jumping out of the bedroom window though a German ran after me and fired another 5 or 6 rounds, once again I was fortunate. One fascist fired at the two menfolk of Ledei but over their heads. Whilst all this was talking place ROSCIOLLE was waiting on the road by the cemetery of MONTELPARO. They all left together leaving the prisoner on the track after depriving him of his spectacles and identifications etc. also they stated that they would be back very shortly to burn down the two farmhouses. TIDEI & MAZZONI.”

J Meyers [signature]

First Interview with Argeo Lupi

CARCERI GIUDIZIARIE [Judicial Prison].

Statement of:-

LUPI Argeo, general labourer, aged 21 years,
son of Giovanni,
residing at CONTRADA SANTA MARIA 81,
MONTELPARO

Who states:-

I have been cautioned that I am not obliged to say anything unless I wish to do so, but whatever I say will be taken down in writing and may be given in evidence.

Signed:- LUPI Argeo.

On the 21st March 1944, about 4.30 p.m., I was walking along the road toward MONTELPARO, when I met a man dressed in civilian clothes. This man had a revolver in his hand, and pointing it at me he told me to put my hands up and began to search me. He then ordered me to walk in front of him and we arrived at the farm of ‘VIOZZI’, where we met two other men who were dressed in civilian clothes, one of these men I recognised at the prisoner ‘Giorgio’. The two men began to speak in German, and we then began to walk towards MONTELPARO. When we had got about 500 metres past the Church of SANTA MARIA we met seven or eight men coming from the direction of MONTELPARO. Two of these men were dressed in civilian clothes, one of whom I recognised as a man from MONTELPARO, named DORINZI Giuseppe, and the remainder were dressed in a dark khaki uniform, with the exception of one man who wore a grey uniform. Two of these men wore blouses. The others wore jackets, and on the breast there was an eagle, and on the collar of the jacket there was a badge representing two wings. The two parties then began to speak in German. One of the men in uniform then took a hand-grenade from his boot and struck ‘Giorgio’, and I several blows on the body. In consequence of these blows ‘Giorgio’ fell to the ground. One of the men then took an automatic rifle from his shoulder and fired a burst of shots at ‘Giorgio’. One of the Germans who was dressed in civilian clothes then fired a shot with a revolver at ‘Giorgio’ as he was lying on the road. I was then told to accompany them along the road in the direction of MONTELPARO, leaving the body of ‘Giorgio’ lying on the roadside. When we reached the MONTELPARO-MONTERINALDO road I was ordered to get into a truck that was stationed there. I was then taken in the truck to PETRITOLI, where I was taken to the Command Post of the German S.S. Unit stationed there. I was afterwards taken to ASCOLI-PICENO, where I was placed in prison and remained there until the Liberation. The man who shot ‘Giorgio’ was about 30 years of age, about 1.85 metres in height, broad built, fair hair, fresh complexion and clean shaven. He was wearing a dark khaki beret, with a plume in the side. He wore a dark khaki uniform and German Military boots.

Signed:- LUPI Argeo.

This statement has been read over to me. It is true and correct.

Signed:- LUPI Argeo.

Statement taken in Italian, read over and signature witnessed by Official Interpreter PANICCIA Claudio, in the presence of Sergeants ANDERTON and MOTTRAM, both of 60 Section, Special Investigation Branch, C.M. Police, at ASCOLI PICENO, on the 24th August 1945.

I certify that the above statement is a true translation of the original to the best of my knowledge and ability.

Signed:- PANICCIA Claudio.

P.P./.

Second Interview with Argeo Lupi

Prison of Ascoli Piceno.
8 March 1946.

Statement of:

Lupi Argeo
Residing at Montelparo,
Ascoli Piceno Prov, Italy.

Who states:

On 21 March 1944 at about 1800 hours, I was proceeding from my house to the town of Montelparo accompanied by two friends of mine. I met a man in civilian clothes who was tall and of robust build. I was walking between my two friends and this man motioned to me. While I was approaching, he drew a pistol, searched me and ordered me to walk before him. I obeyed while my two friends, already far off, went on their way.

I walked before the civilian who was always keeping me covered, till I reached the house of Frullani Raffaele. On arriving, I noticed another civilian who was standing guard over a second civilian. I recognised the latter as a British prisoner who had himself called “Giorgio.” I knew him because we had spent some evenings together at the house of Natali Gino. The prisoner “Giorgio” had blood on his face and as soon as I arrived, he recognised me. We were both ordered to walk on while the two civilians walked behind and kept their pistols pointed at us.

After about one kilometer from the little church of Santa Maria, we met a group of German military personnel and others in civilian clothes among whom [was] a boy, short and blond. Our two captors spoke to the German in uniform in a foreign language. Then almost all of them threw themselves threw themselves on the prisoner “Giorgio” beating him with their fists and delivering blows with the handle of the German hand grenade at his head and body.

I, too, was beaten by the boy in civilian clothes. He hit me in the face and gave me a blow with a hand grenade handle.

After a few assaults on the British prisoner “Giorgio”, the latter fell to the ground. A German in uniform then fired a burst of machine pistol first at the prisoner’s breast, then at his back and lastly at his head. After this and while the group had set off to return to Montelparo, the blond boy in civilian clothes approached the body and fired a pistol shot at it.

I was not able to identify anyone in the group, either German or civilian except Dorinzi Giuseppe of Montelparo who, it seems, was ordered to show the Germans the way.

We walked for about a kilometer and came upon a German [truck] parked along the road. We all climbed on, while Dorinzi was released at Montelparo, I was taken to the town of Petritoli and later to the prison of Ascoli Piceno.

From rumours I heard that one of the two civilians who captured me was the Republican Fascist Bascioni from Belmonte Piceno. I do not know Bascioni, but I think that if I saw him again, [I] would recognise him.

While we were proceeding from Montelparo to Petritoli, we met Settimio Roscioli’s civilian automobile, “Fiat-Topolino”, at the fork formed by roads to Petritoli and Monte Ottone.

(Sgd) Lupi Argeo.

I certify that the above is a true translation of the above original to the best of my knowledge and ability.

Mr Valentino Bosetto
Field Headquarters
War Crimes Branch
JA Sec, HQ MTOUSA.

WO_310_61_0126_r72

Argeo Lupi’s handwritten statement

Argeo Lupi—Inspection of Photographs

The following statement, taken during the investigation, concerns the effort to identify the men responsible for Sidney Smith’s death.

Civil Prison

Statement of:
LUPI, Argeo, driver, 22 years
son of Giovanni,
residing at Contrada Santa Maria, 81
MONTELPARO

Who states:–

I have been cautioned that I am not obliged to say anything unless I wish to do so, but that anything I say will be taken down in writing, and may be given in evidence

Signed LUPI Argeo.

On the 13th June 1946 I was shown by Sergeant DIGBY, of 60 Section, Special Investigation Branch, a series of photographs, and requested to inspect them in view of the possibility of my being able to recognize any of them as being able to recognize any of them as being of the Italians being present with the prisoner of war GEORGIO at the time he was killed by a GERMAN soldier near MONTELPARO

I complied with this request, but failed to recognize any of them as being in any way concerned with the incident.

Signed LUPI Argeo.

This statement had been read over to me. It is true and correct.

Signed LUPI Argeo.

Statement taken in Italian, read over and his signature witnessed by the undersigned official Interpreter DECRISTOFARO Bruno, in the presence of undersigned, Sergeant DIGBY of 60 Section, Special Investigative Branch, C.M. Police, at ASCOLI PICENO, on the 13th June 1946.

Signed Bruno DeChristofaro Interpreter
Signed J. R. Digby Sergeant
A/S. Group 47.

Account of Giulio Illuminati, Mayor of Montelparo

COMUNE DI MONTELPARO

Statement of:-

ILLUMINATI Giulio, Mayor,
aged 30 years,
son of Raimondo,
residing at VIA SANTA MARIA 21,
MONTELPARO

Who states:-

On the 21st March 1944 about 5.30 pm., I was in the village of MONTELPARO, when a German Military lorry drove into the village. On the lorry there were about seven or eight men, some were wearing the uniform of the German Army, and some were dressed in civilian clothes.

A German N.C.O. approached me, and asked me to show him the farm of MAZZONI, and also the VIA SANTA MARIA, to which I replied, “I do not know”. At this time I began to walk toward my home, which is situated in VIA SANTA MARIA, but on hearing the sound of shots, I realised that I would be unable to return home at that time. I then returned to MONTELPARO, where I stayed overnight.

About 8.30 am. the following morning, the 22nd March 1944, I was walking along VIA SANTA MARIA, toward my home. It had been snowing during the night. When I was about 500 metres from the Church of SANTA MARIA, I saw a crowd of people standing round a body which was lying on the road. The body was lying on its back, and I recognised it as being the body of an ex-prisoner of war, whom I knew by name as ‘Giorgio”. There were many bullet wounds in the head, and also a large wound in the chest. On the ground, there was a pool of blood at each side of the head. I then returned home.

On the 8th July 1944, I was appointed Mayor of MONTELPARO. A short time afterwards, Doctor CORINALDESI Ginevra handed to me a sealed envelope which she stated contained a report of her examination of the body of ‘Giorgio’. This I handed to the A.M.G in ASCOLI PICENO.

I do not think I would be able to recognise any of the members of this party again. Some of the men wore the grey green uniform of the German Army, and were wearing a badge of the skull and cross bones on the left breast. I understand they were a part of a German and Fascist S.S. Unit, stationed at that time in MONTALTO and PETRITOLI.

The only document in the COMUNE relating to this incident is a list of the property and clothing found on the body. A certified copy of this document which I have handed to Sergeant ANDERTON, he has marked A II in my presence,

This statement has been read over to me. It is true and correct.

Signed:- Giulio ILLUMINATI.

Statement taken in Italian, read over and signature witnessed by Official Interpreter PANICCIA Claudio, in the presence of Sergeants ANDERTON and MOTTRAM, both of 60 Section, Special Investigation Branch, C.M. Police, at MONTELPARO, on the 9th August, 1945.

I certify that the above statement is a true translation of the original to the best of my knowledge and ability.

Signed:- PANICCIA Claudio.

I certify that I have examined the original statement and that the above is a true translation.

Signed:- TUCCI Sergio.

L.P./.

Account of Gino Ferretti

S. Vittoria in Matenano,
6 March 1946.

Statement of:

Ferretti Gino,
Residing at Montelparo,
Ascoli Piceno Prov, Italy,
Farmer.

Who states:

During the month of February 1944, I do not remember well the day, I heard that an Allied prisoner had been killed in a locality called Santa Maria, about 3 kilometers away. At the time I was in my country home. At about 0730 hrs, I left for the scene of the crime arriving there a few minutes later. I saw about 10 persons around the body of the dead Allied prisoner.

I went up to the body and I recognised the prisoner that for two days I had kept at my home and who had himself called “Giorgio”. He was lying across the road with his face up and showing the following wounds: a firearm wound with entrance under the chin and exit over the ear; a firearm wound in the breast. The face and head showed evident signs of beating by a contundent [Italian contundente means blunt] body.

Rumours said the crime was committed by a squad of Republican Fascists led by a certain Bascioni from Belmonte who is present in prison for Fascist crimes. Bascioni operated under the command of Roscioli Settimio.

(Sgd) FERRETTI Gino.

I certify that the above statement is a true translation of the original to the best of my knowledge and ability.

Mr. Valentino Bosetto
Field Headquarters
War Crimes Branch,
JA Sec, HQ MTOUSA.