Back to Top
AR banner
Search Tips Advanced Search

Vitz Archive Notes


Names A-F G-L M-R S-Z

These notes provide additional information to that provided within the Vitz Archive itself, and relate to war crimes against Allied aircrew and SOE personnel by Axis forces or Axis civilians. These notes are from various sources and are provided to assist the reader gaining a fuller picture but they have not necessarily been independently validated by the author of the Vitz Archive, Traugott Vitz.

This page contains many names, dates, locations. To help find the one(s) you're interested in, use our Highlighting facility.
Highlighting will ONLY find entries within this specific page.


Our objective is to provide comprehensive notes on all victims and if you have information we should include then PLEASE contact us via the Helpdesk.


Sabin, Rex


Samuel, Allan G. (WO 235/351)

Verbatim trial transcript available. WO 235_351 Solingen Case. Please contact us via Helpdesk.


Sanders, Daniel


Sanders, James Evans


Santomiery, Anthony J. (012-1960, 012-1960-1)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Scala, Hector V. (012-0551, 012-0551-1, 012-1915)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Scheidhauer, Bernard W. M.


Schmidli, Donald Hoenig (012-865)

No Trial


Schneider, Norman E. (012-1247)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Scott, Arthur M.


Scott, John (WO 235/395)

Verbatim trial transcript available. WO 235_395 MANGOLD Konrad (Days 01-06). Please contact us via Helpdesk.


Scott, Peter


Scott, Thomas Delmer (WO 235/247)

Scott was Air Gunner on board Halifax VII NP689 QO-M of the 432th (Canadian) Squadron which, as happened frequently in Canadian Crews, had an RAF flight engineer as the only Briton on board.

The crew was:

F/O Stewart Millen Bonter (J/42472, pilot, KIA)

Sgt Douglas Colquhoun (1681850, flight engineer, KIA)

F/O H. E. Vachon (navigator, POW)

F/O A. T. Hinchcliffe (bomb aimer, POW)

W/O2 E.E.V. Anderson (wireless operator, POW)

P/O Darwin Cameron Lawton (J/95383, air gunner, KIA)

P/O Thomas Delmer Scott (J/95497, air gunner, POW -> murdered)

On 15 March 1945 at 1707 hrs, the aircraft took off at East Moor. Target: Hagen. The plane came to grief, and Scott spent several days in the civilian jail of Hagen. He was then handed over to a Wehrmacht unit which locked him up in a gymnasium together with ten Hungarians who were sentenced to death for looting. All of them were then handed over to the Hagen Gestapo under the command of Friedrich Hol(l)born. They were led to a bomb crater, in groups of two or three men tied together at their hands with wire, were made to kneel down and shot to death by an execution squad.

Scott was first buried in the Remberg Cemetery at Hagen and later transferred to Reichswald Forest War Cemetery where he now lies in plot 22, row A, grave 14.

A British Military Court heard the case of "J.H.P.Zensen" (or: Jensen) "and 6 others" at Iserlohn from 6 to 17 September 1946.

Two of the accused were found not guilty, the remaining 5 being sentenced to death. Only the death sentence of Friedrich Ho(l)lborn was confirmed; the other death sentences were commuted to 15 years imprisonment.

Ho(l)lborn (35) was hanged at Hameln on 23 January 1947 at 10 a.m. The executioner was Albert Pierrepoint, assisted by RSM Richard A. O'Neill and Sgt. James Hunter CRMP. There were ten more executions on that day of which four also concerned murders of Allied airmen.



Sekul, John N. (012-2381, 012-1497)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Shambarger, Walter Burton

Dutch trials records not available


Shane, Nathaniel N


Shropshire, Charles T. (05-92)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Sibley, Cyril William


Simmons, William J. (012-1666)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Skanzikas, Sotiris


Slade-Betts, Kenneth Gordon (WO 235/339 Rheine Airfield Case (Charge 9))

Verbatim trial transcript available. WO 235_339ff Rheine Airfield Case. Please contact us via Helpdesk.


Slaughter, Aaron C.


Smith, Alexander Ewan (WO 235/291)

Fusilier Smith died at BAB 20 (a Work Camp for POWs under Stalag Lamsdorf) situated near a synthetic oil plant, near Blechhammer (now Blachownia Śląska, Poland), allegedly when the oil plant was raided by elements of the 15th US Air Force.

After having been first buried in Cosel (now Koźle, Poland), he was transferred to Krakow Rakowicki Cemetery after the war and now rests there in plot 4, row C, grave 12.

His name is entered in the VitzArchive because his death was the subject of a war crime charge against Lieutenant General Kurt Wolff, officer in charge of prisoners of war in Wehrkreis VIII, for failing to provide air raid shelter for the prisoners of war or to move them to safer quarters outside the target area, thereby causing the deaths of four named British prisoners of war of whom Smith was one. A British Military Court found Wolff guilty of the charge and sentenced him to 7 years imprisonment of which he served about four and a half.

British soldiers interned in the same camp testified during this trial that three POWs died in an air raid on a day "a fortnight after the raid of 7th August 1944" or "near the end of August 1944", and that Smith was one of them.

However Smith's date of death as given by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (21st August 1944) does not match the known dates of US air raids on Blechhammer (7th July, 7th August, 22nd August 1944). Evidence was provided to the CWGC which confirmed that Smith's date of death was in fact 22nd August 1944. The CWGC agreed with the evidence and has updated its records and are to make arrangements to correct the Headstone.

Full verbatim trial transcript available via helpdesk


Smith, Donald George


Smith, George Richard


Smith, John J. Jr. (012-1067 & 012-1449)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Smith Jr., Lorenzo Goodwin (No record of a trial)


Smith, Richard C. (012-1733)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Smith, Robert Alfred (WO 235/104)

The death of Cpl. Smith was the subject of a British Military Trial held at AFRAGOLA, Italy, from 14th to 19th March 1946. The first accused, Salvatore Paracuollo, was commander of the Carabinieri Station at BRACIGLIANO. The second accused, Giuseppe Basile, a civilian, was described by Paracuollo as a mere boy at the time.

In mid-April of 1942 there was talk among the population about three British soldiers having been seen in the area of SALTO. Two search parties were formed at least one of which was formed by Paracuollo. There was conflicting evidence about who gave out weapons and whether there had been instructions to kill the soldiers if found, etc. The groups became separated.

Basile was armed with a sporting gun, as were some others of his group; one other had a rifle and one a pistol. After about three hours of search, Basile's group encountered three men. They were called upon to halt, which they did, raising their hands. According to Basile, one man moved his hands to his chest and pocket, which frightened him and his gun went off. One man fell to the ground, one other was wounded in the palms. There was conflicting evidence about whether Basile shot from the hip or whether he had taken his gun to his shoulder. Several witnesses spoke of two shots being fired; they did not agree whether Basile fired both.

Shortly after the shooting, Paracuollo's party, the Carabinieri, arrived at the scene, and first aid was administered. On the way back to the Station, the man most seriously wounded died. The men were dressed in British khaki uniform and were found unarmed when searched.

In the evening of the 16th April 1942, doctor Domenico Lamagna was called to the Carabinieri Station at BRACIGLIANO where he saw a dead body and treated a wounded man. The doctor determined that Cpl. Smith had been shot in the head by two different sizes of pellets which were fired from a distance of 6 to 7 metres. The wounded man was suffering from multiple shotgun wounds on the palms and inside of both hands; the only other wound was from one pellet which had failed to penetrate the forehead. He seemed to have been shot from about the same distance as the dead soldier.

The charge said that the dead soldier was 37230 Cpl. Robert Alfred Smith and the wounded soldier was 22593 Pte Verdun Owen Wilkens, New Zealand Expeditionary Forces, both were escaped PoWs. From a side remark in the trial papers it seems they had escaped from the PoW camp at CAPUA. The name and fate of the third soldier was not mentioned.

In the end, the court seems to have believed the prosecutor's argument that Paracuollo had given orders which led to the fatal outcome, and that it was Basile who had fired the second shot, killing one soldier and wounding the other.

The court found both accused guilty and sentenced Paracuollo to 20 years imprisonment and Basile to 15 years imprisonment. Maj. Gen. Clowes confirmed the sentences but reduced them to 10 years and 8 years, respectively. It is not known how much of the remaining sentences the accused actually served.


Smith, Teddy A.


Smith, Lester William


Speir, Robert J.


Spicer, Robert E. (05-92)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Stevens, Rupert J.


Stewart, Robert Campbell


Stower, John Gifford


Street, Denys Oliver


Stricker, Robert L.


Swain, Cyril Douglas


Swenson, Erick C. (012-447 (not tried))


Synfelt, Leon (012-2823, 012-2823-1)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Szumierz, Edward M.


Tafoya, Medard R. Montejano

Complete trial transcript (Bolzano Gestapo Case) available via Helpdesk.


Tales, John Henry


Taylor, Jack Hardy


Thiel Jr., Ferdinand C.


Thompson, Morris Peter


Tobolski, Pawel Wilhelm


Tonge, Walter


Trebnik, Anthony G. (012-1395)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Trojanowski, Joseph A. (No record of a trial)


Tufenkjian, Haigis (012-2381, 012-1497)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


UNKNOWN (Allied killed 1945-02-15 at Zwickau)


UNKNOWN [1 victim] (12-1182-1)

Richard Drauz - A Particularly Nasty Specimen of the Nazi Movement. Executed December 4 1946

After news of the German defeat at Stalingrad in 1943, Drauz was continuously active in delivering propaganda at the behest of the Party. He delivered speeches nearly every day in front of local Nazi rallies in the City and County of Heilbronn. His speeches typically conjured up old memories of the First World War to emphasize how much victory depended on their attitude and loyalty.

Richard Drauz

On 16 January 1944 Drauz attended an NSDAP meeting which adopted 'Struggle, Work, Faith' as slogan of the year, and on January 30 in Heilbronn's Marktplatz he announced a policy of 'Endsieg'. In August 1944, he ordered the managers of Heilbronn-based companies to an information session, during which he demanded full mobilization of all available resources for 'Total War'. One result was the discontinuation of the Metropolitan Orchestra and Municipal Theater. Any remaining cultural life in the city was finally broken after the first heavy bombing raids on September 10, 1944, to be replaced only by Drautz's 'Rallying Calls'.

Despite his arbitrary leadership, behind the scenes Drauz became more serious about evacuation plans for the city, although far too late. Initial air raids had killed about 300 people, and Drauz carefully argued a case to his boss, Gauleiter and now Military Defense Commissar Wilhelm Murr, that any large-scale attack on the densely populated city center would result in heavy loss of life because of its confined position on the Neckar. Murr refused to permit any evacuation, not only because it would be "defeatist" but, more practically, any evacuees would by now have no place to go. Drauz's prediction became a tragic reality on 4 December 1944. That night a major raid completely destroyed the city center and over 6500 people were killed, including 1000 children, the majority incinerated in a fire storm. It became the worst bombing experience of any city in Württemberg.

In the final months of the war, Drauz became increasingly desperate and violent in trying to follow Hitler's most absurd commands. As a result of the Nero Decree in March 1945, Drauz sought to turn what remained of the ruined city into scorched earth, for example giving orders to blow up the Neckarsulm Vehicle Factory. His goal was largely resisted by the population because defeat was obvious, however it partly succeeded through his orders to withdraw any remaining fire brigades. He also ordered every district village be turned into a bastion and fight to the last on penalty of death. On 3 April 1945, as Allied ground forces approached, Drauz had 57-year old Ortsgruppenleiter Karl Taubenberger shot because he failed to prevent residents from removing a tank barricade. He left Taubenberger's corpse on display 24 hours a day on the main road. A sign with the inscription "I am a national traitor" was hung around his neck.

The final Battle of Heilbronn began on April 4, 1945. By April 6, recognizing the city center could not be held but refusing to accept defeat, Drauz disbanded his District Office, burned records and the Party Flag, then fled in two cars with a large escort. On reaching Schweinsbergstraße, the entourage saw white flags flying from five or six homes, including that of City Council member Karl Kübler. The inhabitants had been advised to raise the flags by retreating Wehrmacht troops, who had described the superior strength of approaching American forces. Drauz stopped the car and ordered "get out, shoot, shoot everything!" Three companions indiscriminately shot at anyone who showed up at a window or opened a door. Kübler's wife Anna, standing protectively in front of her husband, was murdered as well as Kübler himself, the 72-year old pastor Gustav Beyer and 46-year old Elsa Drebinger. Heilbronn Dairy director Karl Weber, who barely escaped the hail of bullets, later reported that Kübler had been given authority by mayor Heinrich Gültig to surrender the city without a fight, but Drauz "was too powerful and would not allow surrender."

Drauz's actions directly left a total of 14 civilians dead, and his orders to fanatical paramilitary units to fight to the end culminated in another week of bitter hand to hand fighting, needlessly costing hundreds more lives and further destroying what was left of the city. Unlike Stuttgart, whose mayor Karl Strölin had quietly negotiated his city's surrender, Heilbronn was not spared this final agony because of Drauz.

Arrest and Execution

At war's end in May 1945, Drauz was already being sought by the US Army because of his involvement in the summary execution of an American PoW that previous March. Now a fugitive, he fled initially to Tübingen with his family. The couple then left their children behind with a tutor and escaped under false papers into the Rhineland, where they took shelter at Dernbach Monastery in Montabaur. In July 1945, when his wife learned their children had been abandoned by the tutor, she went back across American lines and brought them to her hometown of Talheim. There the US Counter Intelligence Corps was waiting for her. After a long interrogation, the CIC learned her husband's location and his false name of 'Richard Binder'. CIC agent Al Sandwina and investigator Helmut F.W. Frey then drove by jeep to the monastery, where with guns drawn they found a man in a small garden house answering to the name 'Binder'. The agents, of course, already knew this name in the false passport. When confronted, Drauz fell apart and was arrested without further incident.

He was tried by the American General Military Government Court (US vs. Richard Drauz, Case Number 12-1182-1) in the Dachau Trials. The court determined that on March 24, 1945 he shot and killed a downed American Airman who had surrendered in the village of Dürrenzimmern, in the Heilbronn district of Brackenheim, a war crime under the Third Geneva Convention. In his defense he stated that the American pilot represented 'Anglo-American air gangsters' who had indiscriminately murdered hundreds of thousands of civilians in Dresden, Hamburg, and other cities. Drauz was found guilty and sentenced to death on December 11, 1945. Transferred to Landsberg Prison, he was executed by hanging on December 4, 1946.

In the aftermath, Heilbronn's new newspaper, the Heilbronner Stimme (Voice of Heilbronn), remarked that 'he was a particularly nasty specimen of the Nazi movement.' For his brutality, indiscriminate murder, and responsibility in the final agony of their city, Drauz remains a figure of contempt in Heilbronn to this day

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


UNKNOWN [1 victim] (12-1106)


UNKNOWN [1 victim] (12-2409)


UNKNOWN [3 victims] (12-45)


UNKNOWN [4 victims] (12-1182)


UNKNOWN believed to be American (12-2218)


UNKNOWN believed to be American (12-2157)


UNKNOWN believed to be American (12-1812)


UNKNOWN believed to be American (12-2694)


UNKNOWN believed to be American (12-2129)


UNKNOWN believed to be American (12-2119)


UNKNOWN [3 victims] (12-1742)


Vajgl, James L. (012-1368/4)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Valenta, Arnost


Van Horn, Robert L. (012-1217)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Vinall, James William


Vinson, Sammie D. (012-1368/4)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Waldron, Leo F.


Walenn, Gilbert William (WO 235/573)

Verbatim trial transcript available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Walker, Ronald Arthur (WO 235/345)

Verbatim trial transcript available. WO 235_345 Tilburg Case.pdf. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Walker, Thomas J. (011-584)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Walthall, Harvey M. (012-0489, 012-0489-1)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Wampler, Roy Millard (No record of a Trial)


Warren, Woodruff J. (008-0027)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Watson, William Neil (WO 235/387)


Webb, Cyril Stanley (WO 235/388)

Investigation file available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Weissman, Harry (No record of a Trial)


Wendte, Dale G.


Wernham, James Chrystall


Whately-Smith, Anthony Robert (WO 235/185 Gaggenau Trial )

A British Military Court was convened in Wuppertal, Germany, between the 6th and 10th May 1946, the trial record of which may be obtained via Helpdesk (WO 235_185 Gaggenau Trial).

Eleven German nationals were charged with committing a war crime in that they, at Rotenfels Security Camp, Gaggenau, Germany, on the 25th November 1944, in violation of the laws and usages of war, were concerned in the killing of six British prisoners of war, namely Major D.B. Reynolds, Capt. Gough, Capt. A.R. Whitely-Smith, Parachutist M.A. Griffin, Lieut. G.D. Dill, Gunner C. Ashe, all of 2nd Special Air Service Regt.; four American Prisoners of war, namely Michael Pipcock (sic), Garis P. Jacoby, Curtis E. Hodges, Maynard Latten and four French nationals namely Abbé Pennrath, Abbé Claude, Abbé Roth and Werner Jakob.

Since there were French nationals among the victims, a French Air Force Captain (Capt.) was a member of the court, sitting with one Brigadier (Brig.) four Majors (Maj.) and a Judge Advocate.

The accused were Karl Buck, SS-Hauptsturmführer (Capt.) and commander of the Sicherungslager (Security Camp) Schirmeck La Broque (Alsace) and Sicherungslager Rotenfels/Gaggenau, Robert Wünsch, SS-Untersturmführer (2nd.Lt.) and administrative officer at the Gaggenau camp, Karl Nussberger, Oberleutnant (1st.Lt.) in the Police and Commanding Officer (CO) of the police unit responsible for the security at Gaggenau camp, one Karl Zimmermann, SS-Sturmscharführer (Sgt.Maj.) and several police Non-Commissioned Officers (NCOs) of varying rank, Erwin Ostertag, Josef Muth, Bernhard Josef Ulrich, Heinrich Neuschwanger, Karl Wilhelm Dinkel, Helmut Korb, and Franz Xaver Vetter.

The court heard that during November 1944 at Schirmeck La Broque, prisoners of various categories were held, some of them in the “Block“ (a prison within a prison). When the Allied forces approached, orders were given to move the “Block“ prisoners from Schirmeck La Broque further to the east. The victims named in the charge were transported to Rotenfels/Gaggenau, which was also under Buck's orders.

On the morning of 24th or 25th November 1944, Buck came to Rotenfels/Gaggenau and issued orders to Wünsch that certain prisoners were to be killed. Wünsch related this order to Nussberger who in turn conferred with his subordinates who then started to make the preparations they thought necessary. At 1400 hrs on the 25th November 1944, a van appeared at the camp gate to take the prisoners and their escort, comprising the accused policemen, except for Nussberger, plus four Russian prisoners who had picks and shovels with them.

The lorry drove to a place outside Gaggenau called Erlichwald (Erlich woods). There the accused made the prisoners, in four groups of three and one group of two, dismount from the lorry and walk some distance into the wood where they were shot dead from behind, their bodies falling into a bomb crater. The individuals who did the shooting were Neuschwanger, Ulrich and Ostertag. The bodies were stripped of their clothes and personal effects. The bomb crater was then filled in and the clothes and effects burned on the spot, although in their haste they left several vital clues which later assisted in identifying the remains.

When French troops reached Gaggenau end of April 1945, word of the atrocities reached them fairly quickly, and they ordered the exhumation of the bodies from the bomb crater, using local Nazis as the workforce. Identification was only partly successful, and the victims were reburied in individual graves in the local cemetery on 13th May 1945. On 10th June, Maj. Eric ‘Bill’ Barkworth of the 2nd Special Air Service (SAS) Regiment arrived and ordered a fresh exhumation. Careful examination of the bodies and graves, together with investigations at the bomb crater site, established the identities of the victims as named in the charge. Maj. Barkworth, in his evidence in court, gave detailed information on the facts and findings upon which he based his identifications.

Ashe, Christopher, Private (Gunner), service number 847426, SAS (Special Air Service). 27 years old. According to www.specialforcesroh.com he was born in the Republic of Ireland and belonged to Operation PISTOL. He was taken prisoner on 23 September 1944.

Based on his dental records, he was identified as the body found in row 4 grave 7 of the Gaggenau Cemetery. Today his grave is in Dürnbach War Cemetery, Bavaria, Germany, field 3 row K grave 12.

Dill, David Gordon, Lieutenant, service number 265704, originally served with the King’s Royal Rifle Corps before joining the SAS (Special Air Service). According to www.specialforcesroh.com he took part in Operation LOYTON and was taken prisoner on 6 October 1944. On 8 November 1944 he was seen alive in Security Camp Schirmeck-La Broque by a representative of the American Red Cross. 20 years old, son to an officer from South Stoke, Oxfordshire.

He was identified thanks to his service issue wrist watch bearing a number which identified it as having been issued to Lt. Dill. Originally buried in row 4 grave 5 of the Gaggenau Cemetery, he is now buried in Dürnbach War Cemetery, Bavaria, Germany, field 3 row K grave 10.

Gough, Victor Albert, Captain, service number 148884, originally served with the Somerset Light Infantry before joining the Special Operations Executive. He was born 11 Sept 1918 in Hereford. As a member of Jedburgh team JACOB he took part in Operation LOYTON. His group parachuted into the Vosges mountains on 12 August 1944. His last radio message to headquarters dated from 18 September 1944, 1900 hrs. He must have been captured on one of the following days while trying to reach Allied lines. On 8 November 1944 he was seen alive in Security Camp Schirmeck-La Broque by a representative of the American Red Cross.

Based on his dental records, he was identified as the body found in row 4 grave 9 of the Gaggenau Cemetery. Today his grave is in Dürnbach War Cemetery, Bavaria, Germany, field 3 row K grave 22.

Griffin, Maurice Arthur, Private (Parachutist), service number 873123, SAS (Special Air Service). According to www.specialforcesroh.com he served originally with the Royal Artillery before joining the SAS. According to the same source he was born in London, lived in Bristol (his parents residing at Sea Mills, Gloucestershire) and was part of Operation LOYTON. He was taken prisoner some time during Sept.-Oct. 1944. 23 years old.

Based on his dental records, he was identified as the body exhumed from row 2 grave 5 of the Gaggenau Cemetery. Today his grave is in Dürnbach War Cemetery, Bavaria, Germany, field 3 row K grave 1.

Reynolds, Denis Bingham, Major, service number 130586, originally served with the King’s Royal Rifle Corps before joining the SAS (Special Air Service). According to www.specialforcesroh.com he took part in Operation LOYTON and was taken prisoner on 30 October 1944. On 8 November 1944 he was seen alive in Security Camp Schirmeck-La Broque by a representative of the American Red Cross.

The body found in grave 3 of row 3, Gaggenau Cemetery, bore his ID tags. Today his grave is in Dürnbach War Cemetery, Bavaria, Germany, field 3 row K grave 5.

Whately-Smith, Anthony Robert, Major, service number 113612, SAS (Special Air Service). 29 years old (born in 1915), son of a priest from Milford-on-Sea, Hampshire. According to www.specialforcesroh.com he took part in Operation LOYTON, he was taken prisoner on 30 October 1944. On 8 November 1944 he was seen alive in Security Camp Schirmeck-La Broque by a representative of the American Red Cross.

The body found in grave 6 of row 2, Gaggenau Cemetery, bore his ID tags. Today his grave is in Dürnbach War Cemetery, Bavaria, Germany, field 3 row K grave 2.

The court found all accused, with the exception of Muth, guilty of the charge and rejected their defense of Superior Orders (in this case: Hitler’s Commando Order of 18th October 1942). The court pronounced sentences as follows:

Buck, Neuschwanger, Nussberger, Ostertag and Ulrich were to die by shooting, Wünsch got 4 years imprisonment, Dinkel 8 years, Korb 3 years, Vetter 2 years and Zimmermann 10 years. The sentences were confirmed by the Commander in Chief of the British Army of the Rhine on 6th July 1946, but not all of them were promulgated and executed.

The French authorities wanted to try some of the accused in this case for other, similar crimes and demanded their extradition. It is not clear why Neuschwanger was the only one to pay with his life for the murders of 25 November 1944. He was executed in the shooting range adjacent Neheimer Straße, Werl, Germany, by a British firing party on 26th September 1946 at 0800 hrs. It is speculated that he may not have been named on the extradition list.

Buck, Nussberger, Ostertag, Ulrich and Wünsch, but also the acquitted Josef Muth were extradited to the French and stood trial before the Tribunal Général at Rastatt, Germany, in the French Zone of Occupation, from 20th February to 18th March, 1947.

The charge accused them of war crimes under Control Council Law No. 10, committed by murder and ill-treatment of Allied nationals in Security and Work Camps.

Buck, Muth, Nussberger, Ostertag and Ulrich were sentenced to death; Wünsch received 1 year imprisonment.

Upon appeal, the (French) death sentences of Buck and Nussberger were commuted to life imprisonment with hard labour. The sentences of Muth and Ostertag were both commuted to 15 years imprisonment with hard labour.

Ulrich’s (French) death sentence was carried out by shooting on 26th August 1947 at 0700 hrs in a gravel pit to the southwest of Sandweier (today part of Baden-Baden).

It is not quite clear at which date the British decided to reprieve Buck, Nussberger and Ostertag and to commute their sentences to prison terms, seeing that (a) the French would not hand the prisoners back any time soon and that it (b) would be very much against British tradition anyway to execute a death sentence years after sentencing.

Buck and Nussberger stood another trial in January 1953 in Metz, in which Robert Wünsch, too, was tried in absentia. All three of them received a death sentence, and again Buck and Nussberger were reprieved, their sentences being shortened to 20 years. Both were released from the British prison at Werl on 9 September 1955. It is not known since when they were back in British custody.

According to archival records, Ostertag was still in prison in 1954.

Otherwise, the final disposition of the sentences for Muth, Ostertag, Wünsch, Dinkel, Zimmermann and Korb is unknown.


Whiting, Robert K.


Wiley, George William


Wilkinson, John Prentice (WO 235/103)

On 1 and 2 April, 1946, a British Military Court convened at Bologna, Italy, to try one German (Michael Kripps) and four Italian nationals, former members of the 8 Coy 2 Bn Police Regt Schlanders, for the killing of a British officer believed to be Major J. P. Wilkinson, RA, near Roncegno, Italy.

The Prosecution detailed the facts of the case as follows: Early in March 1945 a patrol of thirty or forty men of the above mentioned Police unit was in operations against partisans in the hills. On or about 10 March a section under Kripps comprising eleven men sighted a man coming out of a cave, dressed in civilian clothes and carrying an automatic weapon. A second man dressed in civilian clothes, who – said the prosecutor – “is now known to have been going under the name of ‘Major FRECCIA’”, was then sighted. When he was at a distance of about sixty metres, Kripps shouted to him to put his hands up and come to him. The man raised his left hand and made as if to put his right hand in his pocket. The evidence as to whether he also tried to escape was inconclusive. Kripps gave the order to fire, and one of his men fired a shot which brought the man down. The wounded man was then searched and found to be in possession of a pistol, live hand grenades and various documents. Kripps ordered another man of his section, Leonhard Moser, to shoot the wounded man, which he did.

Kripps and Moser were sentenced to death by shooting; the other accused were found not guilty.

The Supreme Allied Commander commuted Kripps’ sentence to 17 years imprisonment, and Moser’s to 7 years. It is not known how much of these sentences they actually served.

The only man in the Commonwealth War Graves Commission’s database who answers the Prosecutor’s description of the victim is 76767 Major John Prentice Wilkinson, born 07/02/1915. He died on 08/03/1945 and was initially buried at Chioggia Civil Cemetery. While the CWGC database gives “1 Lt. A. A. Regt., Royal Artillery”, as Wilkinson’s unit, there exists an S.O.E. personnel file in the British National Archive (HS 9/1594/1).

A newspaper article from “Il giornale di Vicenza”, 3 May 2016, (http://resistenzatradita.eu/2016/05/03/spunta-una-nuova-foto-del-leggendario-freccia/index.htm) prints a photo of the partisan group to which Wilkinson belonged, and says:

“John Prentice Wilkinson ‘Freccia’, born in 1915, after completing his university studies joined the British army as an artillery officer. He participated in war operations in France and North Africa, then in 1944 he joined 1 Special Force, a department whose operational base was in Monopoli.

"Freccia" was parachuted on the Asiago plateau in August of that year as head of mission ‘Ruina’ with tasks of organization and liaison between the different partisan formations of the Upper Vicenza. He was killed on March 8, 1945, on the way back from Tonezza to Laghi, at the hands of some soldiers of the South Tyrolean Order Service, who were tried in Bologna in 1946.”


Williams, James George


Williams, John Edwin Ashley

See Archive Report

During June 1942, he destroyed a Junkers Ju87 and a Bf109 near Gambut. On 5 July, Williams shot down a Ju88. John Williams scored four victories and two damaged in during his time with No. 450 squadron. These kills are believed to have been scored in Kittyhawk AK634 OK-M.

On the night of the 24/25th March 1944 he, along with 76 others escaped from the PoW camp. Most were soon recaptured. He along with 28 year old, Fl/Lt. Reginald Kierath AUS/402364 RAAF from the same Squadron were recaptured on the 29th March. Following orders from Hitler, 50 of the 73 escapees to be executed. The names to be chosen by Gruppenführer Arthur Nebe (1), president of the International Criminal Police Commission, the organisation today known as Interpol.

Williams

Sq/Ldr. Williams and Fl/Lt Kierath were both murdered and there bodies cremated in order to try and cover up cause of death - Sq/Ldr. Williams at Breslau on the 06th April 1944 and Fl/Lt Kiereth at Brüx on the 29th March.


Williams, John Francis


Williams, Ronald Henry


Williams Jr., Thomas D. (012-2381, 012-1497)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Wilson, Donald John (WO 235/339 Rheine Airfield Case (Charge 8))

Verbatim trial transcript available. WO 235_339ff Rheine Airfield Case. Please contact us via Helpdesk.


Witek, Frank T. (012-1576)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Wolfson, Stanford G.


Wood, Edward Frederick (WO 235/339 Rheine Airfield Case (Charge 5))

Verbatim trial transcript available. WO 235_339ff Rheine Airfield Case. Please contact us via Helpdesk.


Woodrow, Roy William (WO 235/387)


Woolf, Charles E.


Wunderlin, Carl Francis (No trial papers found)


Wyatt Jr., Charles E. (12-1545 (Charge 2))

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Wyness, Drew R. C.


Younkin, Louis E. (012-1247)

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Young, Hector Stevenson (WO 235/501)

Verbatim trial transcript available. WO 235_501 HEUER Karl HEITKAMP Hans Please contact us via Helpdesk.


Zappler, Murray (6-56)

Murray Zappler was a German Jew who had made it to the United States. Due to his language abilities and his undoubted enmity towards the Nazi creed he was selected for training in Military Intelligence duties at Ft. Ritchie, Maryland, and afterwards served in IPW (Interrogation of Prisoners of War) Team #154 with 106thInfantry Division. On 18th December 1945, he was taken prisoner, along with many other GIs and his team comrade Staff Sergeant Kurt R. Jacobs, by members of the 2ndBattalion, 293rdRegiment, 18thVolksgrenadierdivision, during the initial stages of the Battle of the Bulge. This battalion was commanded by Hauptmann (captain) Kurt Bruns. On this occasion a number of German POWs were freed again who, on reaching their unit together with the American POWs on the next day, informed Bruns that Zappler and Jacobs had been interrogating them during the previous days in the German language and presumably were emigrated German Jews. Thereupon Bruns ordered both prisoners to be shot immediately. Their bodies were found at the place of the crime on 13 February 1945 by T/4 John H. Swanson of the Service Company, 12thInfantry. Captain Bruns was tried by a Military Commission on 7 April 1945 at Düren, Germany, and sentenced to death by shooting. The sentence was carried out on 14 June 1945 in a gravel quarry at 38159 (Vechelde-)Denstorf. This was the earliest execution of a WW2 war crimes death sentence in Germany.


Zemonek, Ted (12-1545 (Charge 2))

Review and Recommendations Trial Papers available. Please contact us via Helpdesk


Zercher, Robert W (No record of a trial)


At the going down of the sun, and in the morning we will remember them. - Laurence Binyon

All site material (except as noted elsewhere) is owned or managed by Aircrew Remembered and should not be used without prior permission.
© 2012 - 2021 Aircrew Remembered
Last Modified: 08 January 2021, 16:50

If you would like to comment on this page, please do so via our Helpdesk. Use the Submit a Ticket option to send your comments. After review, our Editors will publish your comment below with your first name, but not your email address.

A word from the Editor: your contribution is important. We welcome your comments and information. Thanks in advance.
Monitor Additions/Changes?Click to be informed of changes to this page. Create account for first monitor only, thereafter very fast. Click to close without creating monitor