The Baader-Meinhof Gang Thorwald Proll

A friend of Andreas Baader’s from the Berlin club scene, Proll joined Baader, his girlfriend Gudrun Ensslin, and another friend, Horst Söhnlein, in attempting to burn down two Frankfurt department stores in early May 1968. Technically therefore, Proll was not a member of the Baader-Meinhof Gang, but a fellow conspirator in two arson attempts that pre-date the main activities of the group.

After the for defendants were captured, tried, convicted of arson, and served 14 months of a three year sentence, they were released pending an appeal for amnesty. After the appeal fails, Proll joined Ensslin and Baader in escaping to Paris. Proll’s younger sister, Astrid, joined up the the fugitives. Baader and the others quickly decided that Thorwald is not sufficiently dedicated to their life on the run, and dump him in Switzerland. He would later turn himself in to police and end his career as an arsonist.