Vilna (Sep. 2)
The Court of Appeal yesterday rescinded the two-year sentence imposed on April 19 on Shmuel Wulfin, Jewish student found guilty of participating in the events leading to the death of a Christian student, Stanislas Waclawski, during the anti-Semitic riots in Vilna last November.
Instead the court imposed a sentence of two months imprisonment on Wulfin. The remission of the two-year sentence, and the new verdict, was accompanied by a curious statement by the presiding judge, who found that no anti-Polish and no anti-Jewish disorders took place in Vilna last November, but that Waclawski’s death followed some quarrels between chauvinistic elements.
Wulfin is not satisfied with this verdict and a new appeal will be entered, it is expected.
The prosecutor demanded eighteen months imprisonment for Wulfin. He charged that the Jewish press inflated a small affair involving individuals and not the Jewish people as a whole.
It is true, the prosecutor stated, that “we have anti-Semitic National Democrats, but the Jews are not all saints.”
Counsel for Wulfin, Smiarkowski, asserted that the anti-Semitic National Democrats attacked the Jews. While the Jews probably defended themselves in some places, it cannot be said that they were animated by race hatred.
Another member of Wulfin’s counsel, Czernichow, repudiated the charge that Jews are damaging the Polish name abroad. On the contrary, the Jews are collaborating in the interests of Poland. He complained against the unequal treatment accorded to the participants in the November disturbances, pointing out that the National Democrats responsible for the anti-Jewish riots have not been punished, while Jewish students were held by the District Court.