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In the summer of 1933, the Gestapo set up its own prison in the newly founded Secret State Police Office. It was located in the basement in the south wing of the building at Prinz-Albrecht-Strasse 8, which had originally been built as an arts and crafts school.

A large number of the prisoners in the house prison were politically persecuted people, from whose interrogation the Gestapo expected to gain special insights. Among them were numerous members of the German resistance, but also foreign opponents of the Nazi regime.

During the interrogations, many prisoners were tortured. Some committed suicide. It is estimated that several thousand prisoners were held in the house prison from 1933 to 1945. For most prisoners, the prison was only one, often the first, stage of a long ordeal through detention centers and concentration camps.
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