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Bavarian Official Defends Auerbach Trial Judge

The conduct of Judge Mulzer, presiding judge at the trial of the late Philip Auerbach, was defended here today by Dr. H. Koch. Secretary of State of the Bavarian Justice Ministry.

Mulzer and two other of the five judges sitting on the Auerbach case are former members of the Nazi Party. The chief witness against Auerbach whose testimony was accepted without question, was subsequently convicted and sentenced on a charge of perjury growing out of another case.

Dr. Koch said that Judge Mulzer is under police protection after receiving threats from what Dr. Koch described as circles “close” to the late Dr. Auerbach, onetime head of the Bavarian Restitution Office. Dr. Koch also protested against the “collective prejudice” exhibited toward Judge Mulzer because he had been a Nazi judge. Dr. Koch said that a leading member of the Munich Jewish community–whom he refused to name–had told him that he would prefer to be tried by former Nazi judges so that he could be sure of an objective handling of his trial.

Meanwhile, a spokesman for the Bavarian Finance Ministry reported that the reorganization of the Restitution Office was still going on, over a year after Auerbach had been removed. He said that the aim of the reorganization was to speed payment of claims and that 30,000,000 deutschemarks had been set aside in the current budget for payment of such claims. He also revealed that payment of indemnification for imprisonment under the Nazis would be started in the near future.

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