- Brigadier General Telford Taylor (standing) opens the prosecution case against the 12 defendants of the huge Krupp works in the main court room, Palace of Justice, Nuremberg, Germany.
1947 December 08
- Nuremberg, [Bavaria] Germany
- Variant Locale
- Photo Credit
- United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration, College Park
- Event History
- On 12 November 1947, the U.S. Military Government for Germany created the Military Tribunal III-A in order to try the Krupp Case. The 12 defendants in this case, all officials of the Krupp industrial concern, had been indicted on 16 August. The lead defendant, Alfried Krupp, and eight other defendants, had been members or deputy members of Krupp's Managing Board, while the three others had held similar high-ranking positions. The indictment listed three counts, charging the defendants with committing the following crimes: a) crimes against peace by participating in the planning and waging of wars of aggression and wars in violation of international treaties; b) war crimes and crimes against humanity by participating in the plunder and spoliation of public and private property, devastation, and exploitation against countries under German occupation, causing the suffering of millions; c) war crimes and crimes against humanity by participating in the murder, extermination, enslavement, deportation, imprisonment, torture, and use for slave labor of civilians who came under German control, German nationals, and prisoners of war; and d) participating in a common plan or conspiracy to commit crimes against peace. All of the defendants were charged under counts one, three, and four, and all but two were charged under count two, but counts one and four were dismissed by the Tribunal soon after the completion of the prosecution's case because of lack of evidence. After the defendants were arraigned on 17 November, the trial began on 8 December, finishing on 30 June 1948. The Tribunal returned its judgment on 31 July, finding six of the ten defendants charged under count two guilty, and all but one of the defendants guilty under count three. That one defendant, Karl Heinrich Pfirsch, was acquitted of all charges. The sentences were handed down the same day, with the eleven guilty defendants receiving prison terms ranging from two to twelve years. In almost all instances, these sentences were commuted to time served.