Federal working group of critical police officers

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Federal Working Group of Critical Police Officers (Hamburger Signal)
founding January 18, 1987
Seat Hamburg
purpose Professional association
Chair Thomas Wüppesahl
Members ~ 100 (2017)
Website Kritische-polizisten.de

The Federal Working Group of Critical Police Officers (Hamburger Signal) , also known as “Die Kritischen” or “BAG” , is a professional association founded on January 18, 1987 by police officers . He focuses on topics such as human rights and civil rights, especially in the field of police services in the Federal Republic of Germany . The association is based in Hamburg , with its office in Geesthacht . The spokesman is the former police officer Thomas Wüppesahl .


The agenda covers numerous problem areas. With its work, in accordance with the free and democratic basic order of the Federal Republic of Germany, the BAG wants to promote the freedom of citizens, equality for all and equal rights , the protection of minorities and the solidarity of people against their annihilation and against the destruction of their livelihoods. It strives for a democratization of the police in internal and external relations and their transparency for the public as well as the cooperation with others in the police service and their organizations.

The BAG expresses itself on a wide range of questions relating to internal security and criminal policy, on problems within or in connection with the police as an institution, as well as other civil law issues. The association works with various civil rights groups, parties and associations, organizes conferences, seminars and congresses. With its work, the association wants to make itself heard.


The association was founded on January 18, 1987 in Bonn . The background was the experience of the 7./8. June 1986 violent demonstrations around the Brokdorf nuclear power plant and the events during a police operation in Hamburg on the occasion of a demonstration on the Heiligengeistfeld , also known as Hamburger Kessel .

Members can become active and former employees in the police service. The founding members include Manfred Mahr , Manfred Such and Thomas Wüppesahl “for more democratic attitudes and structures in the police” and “especially for the right and duty to contradict and self-critical examination” , as it was in 1988 when the Gustav- Heinemann Citizen Prize of the SPD was honored. In addition to a federal association and a federal executive committee, state associations with regional groups have also been established in some federal states.

One of the association's first demands in 1986 was a rethink in the training of police officers . In response to the statement by founding member Manfred Such that he experiences illegal actions by colleagues "almost every day" on duty, the Arnsberg public prosecutor brought charges of insult in 1988 after 66 of his colleagues had filed criminal charges. Such presented his position in the publication Citizens Instead of Cops .

In 1988 the Cologne police chief filed a criminal complaint. As part of a manhunt for a murderer, Manfred Such had become known through internal sources that there were so-called "pink lists" which are said to have been kept in desk drawers for proceedings in which it was suspected that there were connections with homosexual milieus. Such and a Cologne official demanded the end of the "pink lists" and an investigation into the case. The proceedings against the critical police officers were discontinued, but the criticism at the time also enabled the police to rethink. Later, commissioners for the affairs of gay and lesbian police officers were created and initiatives and associations were approached. This made it clear that violence against gay men and lesbian women was often not sufficiently cleared up and that instead suspicions were raised against this group of people.

Numerous critical police officers formally founded this association in Berlin in 1988 as a registered association, which they formed together until around 1999. Reinhard Borchers, managing director of the association for many years, invented and produced, together with the editorially active Wiesbaden police officer Jürgen Korell, the long-standing magazine “Unbequem” for the critical police officers. - The North Rhine-Westphalian police and later criminal police officer Bernward Boden ensured that the critical police officers became known through active public relations work and statements, lectures, seminars and panel discussions on critical issues relevant to the police. It was Boden and Mahr who, together with the former Federal Constitutional Judge and Church Congress President Simon, ensured that Protestant church conventions were attended several times, although the majority of the critical police officers did not want to be close to the churches.

In 2001 the association's financial resources were hardly sufficient to continue the work. The financial problems arose, among other things, from two injunctions by the Berlin Police President Hagen Saberschinsky and another police director . There were also internal disputes. Some members of the BAG joined the Humanist Union (HU) in 2001 ; some former members work in a police group at Amnesty International . The insolvency proceedings, which were pending between 2001 and 2004, were ended in August 2004 by a decision of the Hamburg District Court as an insolvency court; the BAG of critical police officers has since been fully competent again.

There was no official cooperation with the police unions at any point, although many BAG members were also union members. Many members of the association were politically organized in the Greens and the SPD , some were members of city and state parliaments as well as the German Bundestag . At times, the association was represented by the federal spokesman Bernward Boden, Jürgen Bugla and others, later also by Martin Herrnkind and other board members, including Jürgen Korell, who, together with the long-standing federal manager of the association, Reinhard Borchers, wrote the magazine "Unbequem" issued. - The proximity of the Federal Spokesman Boden to the Protestant Church and the peace movement in the vicinity of the churches repeatedly led to conflicts with activists, so that in 1997 Boden gave up his involvement in this association.

The past points of criticism included the police's approach to the transport of the atom to Gorleben , protests against Stuttgart 21 and the demonstrations in Hamburg on December 21, 2013, and the way the city of Hamburg dealt with the so-called Lampedusa refugees in Hamburg . Particular points of criticism apply to the clarification of the NSU trial . The requirements include the general labeling requirement for police officers .

No general meetings have taken place since 2011.


The magazine "Unbequem", with which contributions to the internal police discussion on democracy , civil rights and human rights, were discussed, was published irregularly. For example, the causes and effects of police attacks were regularly and critically reported and discussed.


  • Werner ceiling: critical police officers - Hamburg signal. Attempt a prejudice-free discussion. Term paper at the University of Applied Sciences for Public Administration Hamburg, Department of Police. 1990.
  • Rolf Gössner with the collaboration of Oliver Neß and the Federal Working Group of Critical Police Officers: Police in Twilight. Is the machine out of control? Campus, Frankfurt am Main, New York 1996, ISBN 3-593-35469-1 .
  • Otto Diederichs: Police. Rotbuch, Hamburg 2000, ISBN 3-434-53508-X , p. 82ff.
  • Martin Herrnkind, Sebastian Scheerer : The police as an organization with a license to use violence. Possibilities and limits of control. Lit, Münster 2003, ISBN 3-8258-6516-9 ( Hamburg studies on criminology and criminal policy. 31), p. 131ff.
  • Jürgen Korell, Urban Liebel: Police scandal - scandal police. Lack of democracy among the police? Munster 2000.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Archived copy ( memento of September 30, 2012 in the Internet Archive ).
  2. a b c Martin Herrnkind, Sebastian Scheerer: Possibilities and limits of internal police control. In: The police as an organization with a license to use violence. Possibilities and limits of control. P. 131 ( online ).
  3. Controversial WDR-2 interview. In: www.ksta.de. January 3, 2017, accessed November 2, 2019 .
  4. morgenpost.de: Police infiltrated by clans? Public prosecutor's office determined on February 23, 2019. Retrieved October 28, 2019 .
  5. ^ Text of the award document for the Gustav Heinemann Citizens' Prize in 1988.
  6. The horizon is generally too narrow . In: Der Spiegel . No. 31 , 1986, pp. 70–71 ( online interview with Detective Inspector Ingo Röder, Police Superintendent Helmut Süßen, Police Superintendent Manfred Mahr, Police Superintendent Michael Vogeler, Superintendent Reinhard Borchers, Superintendent Horst Middeldorf and Superintendent Gerd Starke, Thomas Schwarze and Holger Schönfeld).
  7. Shameful silence . In: Der Spiegel . No. 32 , 1988, pp. 55-57 ( online ).
  8. Ultimately impossible . In: Der Spiegel . No. 10 , 1989, pp. 80 ( online ).
  9. Manfred Such: Citizens instead of cops. Polemic for another police force. Klartext, Essen 1988, ISBN 3-88474-437-2 .
  10. Otto Diederichs: Critical Policemen. Self suspended. In: Friday . August 31, 2001.
  11. Archived copy ( Memento of February 13, 2014 in the Internet Archive )