(Reuters) - Bavarian authorities are investigating allegations of alcohol-fuelled abuse and sexual humiliation of young, mainly female recruits at a police dog training school, the state interior ministry said on Tuesday.
According to allegations made in a detailed eight-page anonymous letter seen by Reuters, female officers were forced to wear dog choke chains and crawl on all-fours through the school canteen as well as kneel in front of male officers and drink beer from bowls in their laps.
They were also made to crawl under tables, bark like dogs and given electric shocks from special collars, while male recruits were made to drink urine, the letter says.
Senior officers at the school apparently made proud references to the building's previous occupants, Adolf Hitler's elite SS security force, telling recruits that "real men" had slept in the beds before them and they were not worthy of sleeping there, according to the allegations.
The anonymous letter was sent to the Bavarian branch of the Social Democratic Party (SPD) and the authors insisted their identity be kept secret for fear of reprisal.
Officials at the police dog training school declined to comment, referring all queries to investigating authorities.
The letter, made available to Reuters by an SPD official in Bavaria, also says that prostitutes were regularly brought in to the school from the nearby Czech Republic and that some of the school's dogs were mistreated.
"Normally I ignore anonymous letters," Bavarian SPD security spokesman Stefan Schuster said.