Austrian Vice-chancellor Backs Retrial for Accused Murderer of Jews

Vice-Chancellor Bruno Pitterman of Austria today informed the Jewish Labor Committee that the Austrian Socialist Party will make every possible attempt to obtain the reversal of a court decision that freed Franz Murer, the alleged Nazi mass murderer of the Vilna ghetto during World War II.

The message was sent in a cable to Adolph Held, chairman of the JLC, following a telephone conference by Mr. Pitterman with Benjamin Tabachinsky, executive secretary of the Jewish labor organization.

The Austrian Vice-Chancellor, who is also chairman of the Socialist Party, stated that “the Austrian Socialists consider the freeing of the accused Franz Murer by the jury in Graz (Austria) as an erroneous decision. ” He said that the Minister of Justice, Christian Broda, will appeal to the Austrian Supreme Court for a reversal of the decision, and the Socialists would give full support to the minister’s efforts,

Murer was Germany’s Gauleiter in Vilna during the war, and was accused of having wiped cut the Jewish residents of that city. He was tried on those charges several months ago in Graz, and was acquitted by a Jury made up of local citizens.

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