|Allegiance||State of Israel|
Avner Werner Less (18 December 1916 – 7 January 1987) was a German-born Israeli police officer, best known for interrogating former German SS officer Adolf Eichmann after he was captured by Mossad agents in Argentina and brought to Israel to stand trial.
Life and career
Less was born in Berlin, Germany in 1916. He attended the Upper Forest School in Charlottenburg. In 1933, after the Nazis assumed power, he emigrated to France, where he continued his agricultural studies.
In 1938, he emigrated to Mandatory Palestine, and during his first years there, worked on orange plantations. From 1941 to 1948, he was a police officer in Haifa and price checker for the local district. After Israeli independence in 1948, he became head of the Import-Export Section of the Ministry of Industry and Trade, and was Deputy-Director of the Legal Department for price control in the Haifa district. In 1951, he joined the Israel Police, and worked in the Department of Economic Crimes. From 1954 to 1958, he served in the Israeli foreign service as an attaché in New York City and Paris, as permanent representative of Israel to the annual conference of the UN Drug Commission in Geneva, and as a representative of Israel at Interpol.
In 1968, he moved to Switzerland, and until 1971 was a member of the Banque de Crédit International Genève. In 1972, he became head of internal security for Bank Robinson AG in Basel. From 1976 to 1979, he worked at the Company for Bank Revisions in Basel, and in 1979, he was employed by Neutra Treuhand AG as internal controller.
Less died in Zürich in 1987, at age 70.
Less is known for having interrogated former German SS officer Adolf Eichmann, who was captured by Mossad agents in Argentina in 1960 and brought to Israel to stand trial. From 1960 to 1961, Less served as Eichmann's interrogator, questioning him multiple times, for a total of 275 hours. Extracts from the interrogation of Eichmann by Less have been published in the 1983 book Eichmann Interrogated.
In popular culture
- Less was portrayed by American actor Troy Garity in the 2007 film, Eichmann, which dramatizes Eichmann's interrogation.
- von Lang, Jochen (1983). Eichmann Interrogated. Canada: Farrar, Straus and Giroux. ISBN 0-88619-017-7.
- ↑ AfZ online - Archiv der Eidgenössischen Technischen Hochschule Zürich
- Extracts from Less's interrogation of Eichmann at the Nizkor Project
- New York Times review of Eichmann Interrogated