Frankfurt (Apr. 1)
Two Rumanian Jewish youths were today sentenced to one year’s imprisonment as a result of an alleged attack upon a German woman, which was the culmination of the search by one of the boys for his father’s murderer. The sentence was pronounced by Captain Alan Fraser, AMG legal officer, who handled the case from beginning and acted as investigator, prosecutor, and finally judge.
In a trial that lasted less than two hours, the court in the person of Capt. Fraser, heard Andor Horowitz, 18, and Ber Blum, 21, recount the story of Horowitz’ search for the Gestapo agent who killed his father in the Rumanian town of Cluj, where they had formerly lived. Tracking the Gestapo man led Horowitz from the Austrian Tyrol, where he was liberated as the last surviving member of his family of eight, back to Rumania, Bavaria, the Lampertheim DP camp and finally Frankfurt.
At Cluj, with the aid of the local police and UNRRA authorities, Horowitz discovered that the Gestapo agent had a sister living in Hoechst, a suburb of Frankfurt. With Blum, a friend of his concentration camp days and also a resident of Cluj, whom he had met again in the Lampertheim camp, he wandered the streets of Hoechst for several days until he found the sister, Krietenz Diedlo.
When they questioned her about her brother, she insisted that he was dead and became angry when they refused to believe the story. According to the boys, she shouted anti-Jewish insults and attempted to strike Horowitz with her washboard, and he shoved her away. She fell and bloodied her nose. Neighbors called American military police who arrested the boys and refused to help them find the photograph of the Gestapo agent, which had been lost in the scuffle, and which was the only evidence of their story. During the trial Mrs. Diedl claimed that the two had beaten and gagged her, and had stolen her ring and some cigarettes.
Although he said he was in sympathy with the boys, Capt. Frazer declared that “two wrongs don’t make a right.” He also stated that in his opinion the “grey-haired woman” could not have swung her washboard at the boys. He doubted that the youths ever had the photograph of the Gestapo man.
The boys’ lawyer, Dr. Kuro Rathe, indicated that he would appeal Fraser’s decision to higher military authorities.