Locked up, harassed, tortured: the Ministry of State Security (Stasi) maintained 17 pre-trial detention centres in the GDR. For about 30 years, both the Neubrandenburg district administration of the Stasi and the pre-trial detention centre were located in Neustrelitz. And it was something special. Political prisoners were placed in pre-trial detention here and then sentenced before the 1st Criminal Senate in Neubrandenburg. These were former Stasi employees, spies in the party apparatus, escape helpers or critical citizens.
Lutz Friedel received five months’ imprisonment in Neustrelitz and then three years in prison. The reason: after Biermann’s expatriation in 1976, he put up eleven protest banners on houses and railway subways in Neustrelitz. Harald Lehmann had done his alternative service to the National People’s Army as a construction soldier and found ammunition in a drawer during a patrol without reporting it immediately. He was sentenced to six years in prison for espionage, terror, desertion and theft and was then sent to the notorious prison labour camp X.
The historian Christian Halbrock has now written a book about Neustrelitz as a system behind the GDR power apparatus. It is about fates, arbitrary justice and the defensive work of the state security with often inconceivable consequences for those affected.
Dr. Christian Halbrock Author
Lutz Friedel Former prisoner, contemporary witness
Harald Lehmann Former prisoner, contemporary witness
Peter Grimm Journalist
The event well be held in German