A Strong New Lead in the Betrayal of Anne Frank

After receiving extensive criticism for its “most likely scenario” of who betrayed the Jewish teen diarist and her family in German-occupied Amsterdam during World War II, the publisher of a new and controversial work about Anne Frank has decided to withdraw the book.

The US distributor of “The Betrayal of Anne Frank: A Cold Case Investigation” said on Wednesday that it will keep selling copies of the book despite the controversy surrounding it. Cold case team research presented in a book by Canadian scholar and novelist Rosemary Sullivan sparked immediate condemnation in the Netherlands.

A Strong New Lead in the Betrayal of Anne Frank


A Strong New Lead in The Betrayal of Anne Frank

Anne Frank, then a teenager, wrote in The Diary of a Young Girl about her experiences hiding from the Nazis in an Amsterdam attic with her family and four others during World War Two. The book has sold over 30 million copies.

Although Anne’s narrative has been the subject of several articles, books, plays, and novels, no one has ever satisfactorily explained how the group of eight managed to stay hidden from the Nazis for nearly two years, or what finally led them to the house.

Retired FBI agent Vincent Pankoke and his team of tireless detectives pored over tens of thousands of pages of records, some of which had never been seen before, and interviewed dozens of people with direct family ties to the Franks.

The FBI’s Cold Case Unit painstakingly pieced together the months preceding up to the notorious arrest, and their result was surprising. The captivating account of their efforts may be found in the book The Betrayal of Anne Frank: A Cold Case Investigation.

Rosemary Sullivan gives us a rundown of the detectives looking into the case, provides background on the prisoners and their captors, and profiles a few possible bad guys. She does an excellent job of recreating the atmosphere of Amsterdam during the war, when no one could be trusted regardless of their social status.

Anne Frank Betrayal Book Pulled After Findings Discredited

The Dutch publisher of a book that claimed to have determined who betrayed Anne Frank has pulled the book from shelves in light of the book’s now debunked claims. Their investigation in the book led them to conclude that a Jewish guy named Arnold van den Bergh was behind the arrests of her and her family during the Holocaust.

There has been widespread criticism of the piece since its January release. Now, a new assessment by a group of WWII specialists and historians says the study’s findings don’t hold water.

Anne Frank, a Jewish girl, hid from the Nazis for two years and kept a journal about her experiences until she was murdered in a prison camp in 1945. Jewish notary Van den Bergh possibly betrayed the Franks’ hiding place to preserve his own family, according to the book The Betrayal of Anne Frank: A Cold Case Study.

Its team of investigators, headed by a former FBI agent, spent six years looking into the matter. Canadian author Rosemary Sullivan’s work sparked a protest from Jewish organisations and historians, however.

To protect Anne Frank’s legacy and the honor of Holocaust survivors, the European Jewish Congress demanded that HarperCollins withdraw the English language edition.

Was Anne Frank Betrayed?

Because no records of the raid on the Secret Annex were kept, most of the explanations for the find come from eyewitness accounts. While betrayal was initially thought to be the driving factor in the capture of those on the run, other possibilities are beginning to take center stage.

Academic study on the topic is ongoing. In 2016, for example, the Anne Frank Home reopened its investigation into the raid, and in 2017, a retired FBI agent claimed that he would be searching for the possible traitor of the individuals in hiding with the assistance of an international cold case team and cutting-edge technology.

The results of the investigation into the cold case were presented on January 17, 2022. Someone called the SD to betray the persons in hiding on August 4, 1944, but no one has ever been able to verify it.

For example, SD-officer Silberbauer recounted a phone call that he received on the morning of August 4th. Silberbauer was located by Nazi hunter Simon Wiesenthal in 1963, and in his initial written testimony, he claimed that “a Dutchman” had called him.

His words, however, did not always add up. Some time later, he stated he couldn’t recall whether or not a phone call had been made, let alone who had placed it.


Otto Frank wrote to his family in the fall of 1945, explaining that he and his helpers were investigating who had betrayed them. To them, it felt like they’d been betrayed. It’s understandable, given how many individuals were deceived and taken prisoner by the Germans during the occupation.

Unfortunately, there is no evidence to support this hypothesis. The arrest was initially thought to have been the result of a betrayal. Several hypotheses were explored here, all with this situation in mind, but none of them could be accepted due to a lack of supporting evidence.