Die großen Kriminalfälle –
Bernhard Kimmel, der Al Capone aus der Pfalz


The Kimmel gang is considered the most dangerous of the Adenauer era. Between 1956 and 1961, nearly 200 burglaries are attributed to them. Total takings: 100,000 deutschmarks – a fortune at the time. The gang is named after its leader: the young weaver Bernhard Kimmel. Newspapers called him the “Al Capone of the Palatinate”. Kimmel grew up in a small town called Lambrecht. After initial “cops and robbers” games with army weapons he finds, the game soon gets serious.

In 1957, the gang attacks its first bank and soon no vault is safe from them … When a drunken member of the gang shoots a man during their “last coup”, the gang is tracked down by the police and arrested. 10 years later, Kimmel is released early from prison but he can no longer avoid the criminal underworld. After another murder of a policeman, he gets a life sentence. In December 2003, he is released after 22 years in prison – having served a total of 32 years behind bars.

Roland May Dirk Laabs Gerolf Karwath Christian Giradet Christian Güttler Dr. Thomas Schuhbauer SWR, 2006
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