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He was captured in 1944, and, while in prison, spoke with fellow Edelweiss Pirate Miriam Kurtz. Convinced that her family connections would help her get out of prison, he told her about the artifact hidden in the spire of the Cologne Cathedral and asked her to bring it to the Assassins in Paris.
He was publicly hanged in Cologne by the Gestapo on 10 November 1944, alongside eleven other Edelweiss Pirates.