Trial of Pogromists in Ukraine: Girl Victim Tells Terrible Story in Court

At the District Court in Zkitomir a number of trials have been taking place recently which are again bring into the limelight the terrors of the pogromist days of 1919-20. Scores of pogromists, hundreds of pogrom victims, sometimes whole villages of Jews stand in the dock or the witness box of the court, and the whole tragic story is gone over again with all its harrowing details.

A few days ago eight peasants ere put on trial for participating in the pogrom in Ivniza in which forty-seven young Jews were murdered. The leader of the band is the wealthiest peasant of the whole district around Ivniza, a man named Lozovoj, and his two sons. Withnesses declare that he was the symbol of the pogroms in the district. His appearance anywhere in the neighborhood meant that a pogromist band was on its way. The witnesses described terrible happenings which took place under their eyes, and of which they themselves were victims. A young girl named Freyer, who was carried away into a wood together with another girl and terribly maltreated, told a revolting story. Her friend was afterwards killed by the bandits. She herself was shot at. She was found in the wood days after, lying unconscious, her nose cut off and one of her eyes out. The mutilated girl stood up in the witness box and cried to the bandits who had shot at her: “Why did you miss, why did you not kill me!”

After a five hours consultation the court pronounced sentence of death upon Lozovoj and his two sons. The rest were sentenced to various terms of imprisonment. Taking into consideration, however, that the crime was carried out three years ago and that since then all the prisoners have been leading honest lives, the death sentence was commuted to five years imprisonment in each case. The whole of the possessions of the prisoners have been confiscated by the State.

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