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Trial of Gestapo Leader Responsible for Death of Thousands of Czech Jews Opens

The trial of Dieter von Wisliczeny, former Gestapo chief and advisor on Jewish affairs to the Slovak puppet government, opened today in Bratislava. Wisliczeny is charged with responsibility for deporting thousands of Czechoslovak Jews to death camps in Poland.

In 1942, the indictment against Wisliczeny says, the defendant promised to halt the deportation of Jews from Slovakia on condition that they pay a large sum of money to the Gestapo though him. The Jews, who had already been ruined financially, succeeded in scraping together $50,00 which they turned over to the defendant. Despite the bribe, the Jews were later deported to their death.

In his opening address the prosecutor said that Wisliczeny later participated in the mass deportations of Jews in Greece, Hungary and elsewhere in the Balkans. He was described as a follower and personal friend of Adolf Eichmann, chief Nazi "Jewish expert" who set up the notorious Theresienstadt, Oswiecim and other death camps.