Marika Rökk was one of the most popular movie stars in Germany during World War II and after. She rose to fame when the Nazi propaganda minister, Joseph Goebbels, decided that Germany needed an iconic movie star to rival Hollywood actresses like Rita Hayworth and Ginger Rogers.
According to recently declassified documents, it is possible that the movie star may have been working for the KGB, involved in a spy ring that was passing secrets to Moscow.
Rökk was born in Hungaria. She was banned from acting for two years because of her association with the Nazis.
After rehabilitating, she became one of the most popular movie stars during the post-war period. She appeared in nearly 40 films before her death in 2004 at the age of 90.
According to the released documents, she was suspected of being a Russian spy for fifty years by German intelligence.
West Germany’s Gehlen Organization was the forerunner of the BND in Germany. They first suspected Rökk of being a spy in 1951.
The Gehlen Organization was run by Reinhard Gehlen, the rehabilitated former head of Nazi military intelligence on the eastern front.
The declassified documents state that the Gehlen Organization noticed that Rökk had connections with Soviet authorities that it believed suggested possible intelligence work.
Analysts believe that she may have been recruited by her manager, Heinz Hoffmeister.
Her husband, Georg Jacoby, was also under suspicion of working with the Soviets.
In 1951, Rökk announced that she was retiring from acting and starting a knitwear shop in Düsseldorf, The Telegraph reported.
The intelligence report called that camouflage to hide her spying.
The documents do not include any evidence to support the belief that Rökk was a spy. It also fails to give any detail on the work she allegedly did for the Soviets. Germans have shown skepticism when hearing the accusations.