BERLIN (Aug. 13)
The Supreme Court for Restitution Claims in West Berlin upset today sales made by Jewish property owners under the Nazi regime to the Japanese, Hungarian, Bulgarian and Latvian governments, and ruled that the former owners or their heirs were entitled to claim the properties. The court found that the sales had been made under duress, and the property-owners had been victims of racial persecution.
The properties involved were in the Tiergarten district of Berlin, which was the diplomatic quarter before World War II. The four governments had purchased the properties from their Jewish owners for use by their missions in Berlin.
A legal action by the governments in London to have the claims of the former owners set aside was considered here to be nullified by the local court’s action. The individual claims of the former Jewish owners or their heirs will now be handled in the West Berlin courts.