22 Former Buchenwald Guards Sentenced to Death; Nine Get Various Terms of Imprisonment

An eight-man American military tribunal today sentenced to death 22 of 31 Nazi guards, officials and doctors at the Buchenwald extermination camp. The remaining nine defendants received terms ranging from 10 years to life imprisonment. All were convicted of charges of torture and murder of thousands, including many Jews.

Five of the nine whose lives were spared received life terms, including Ilse Koch, widow of a former commandant of the camp; Prince Josias zu Waldeck, former Gestapo general and chief Judge at the camp; and Dr. Edwin Katzenellenbogen, former American citizen, who is reported to be a Jew. The remaining four convicted criminals received 10-20 year sentences.

Katzenellenbogen requested the death sentence Tuesday when the 31 were found guilty. Among the doomed men was Hans Eisele, a Gestapo lieutenant, who was sentenced to die at a previous trial for crimes at the Dachau concentration camp but was later saved when his sentence was commuted to life imprisonment. Over 400 spectators were present in the court during sentencing. All the defendants were moved to the Landsberg prison this afternoon.

Today’s sentencing marked the end of the fourth of the five mass trials of concentration camp personnel by American military courts. Only the trial of guards and officers at the Nordhausen camp, which opened here last week, remains to be completed. The trials of personnel at the Buchenwald, Dachau, Mauthausen and Flossenberg camps resulted in 173 convictions and 134 death sentences. To date the Dachau war crimes court has tried 1,323 Nazi war criminals with a record of 1,112 convictions.

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