Alexandre Villaplane

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Alexandre Villaplane
Personal information
Date of birth 12 September 1905
Place of birth Algiers, French Algeria
Date of death 26 December 1944(1944-12-26) (aged 39)
Place of death Arcueil, France
Playing position Midfielder
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1921–1924 FC Sète
1927–1929 SC Nîmes
1929–1932 RC Paris
1932–1933 FC Antibes
1933–1934 OGC Nice
1934–1935 Hispano-Bastidienne
National team
1926–1930 France 25 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Alexandre Villaplane (12 September 1905 in Algiers[1] – 26 December 1944 in Fort de Montrouge, Arcueil) was a French football player of North African origin, who played in the role of midfielder. Villaplane was also a Nazi collaborator who was arrested and executed for his actions during World War II.

In his career he played for FC Sète (1921–1924), Nimes Olympique (1927–1929), Racing Club de France (1929–1932), FC Antibes (1932–1933) and OGC Nice (1933–1934). He was capped 25 times for the France national football team and was the captain of the French side which went to the 1930 FIFA World Cup.[1]

He played for Antibes in the very first French professional championship in 1932–33; Antibes were disqualified that season for corruption. He then joined OGC Nice for the 1933–34 season. Having lost interest in his career and having become a regular horse race-goer, he made one last attempt to resurrect his career with the Bordeaux Second Division club Hispano-Bastidienne, but he ended the season in prison, having been sentenced for his part in a horse race fixing scandal.

At the beginning of World War 2, Villaplane became involved in the Parisian black market and in racketeering the local Jewish population. He was sentenced to two months’ imprisonment for possession of stolen goods in 1940. He then joined a group formed by Henri Lafont and Pierre Bonny which would become the French Gestapo. He specialised in racketeering gold merchants.

In 1942, he left Paris for Toulouse to escape the Germans he had been trying to fleece. His former teammate Louis Cazal obtained new identity papers for him and he returned to Paris. He was arrested by the SS in 1943 for the theft of a quantity of precious stones and imprisoned at the Compiègne camp, although Lafont succeeded in obtaining his release.

Villaplane then became Bonny’s chauffeur and then, in 1944, head of one of the five sections of the North African Brigade, a criminal organisation made up of North African immigrants which collaborated with the Nazis through anti-Resistance activities.[2] The fierce character of his recruits earned him the unflattering nickname of "SS Mohammed". He obtained both the rank and uniform of an SS-Untersturmführer. His section was put in charge of finding Resistance members and their supporters in the region of Périgueux in the month of March 1944, and then in the region of Eymet in the following month. It was in Eymet that he negotiated for the lives of hostages for money. On 11 June 1944, the day following the massacre at Oradour-sur-Glane, he had 52 people executed in Mussidan.

He was sentenced to death on 1 December 1944 for his direct involvement in at least 10 killings. He was executed by firing squad on 26 December 1944 at the Fort de Montrouge.

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