Venlo Incident

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A November 1939 counterespionage operation by the German Sicherheitsdienst (SD), under the command of Walter Schellenberg, the Venlo Incident enabled them to capture two British Secret Intelligence Service agents, at Venlo in the Netherlands, near the German border. Captured were Captain Sigismund Payne Best and Major Richard H. Stevens, who were held in German prisons throughout the war. A Dutch intelligence officer, Dirk Klops, was killed in the operation.

Not only did the action take experienced officers out of action, the approach to the British had been made by purported anti-Nazi resistance members, but, as a result, made the British suspicious of anyone claiming to be a member of the German Resistance.

Schellenberg was assisted in the meeting by a German psychiatrist, Max de Crinis and by an SD operative, Alfred Naujocks. It was approved by Reinhard Heydrich.