HC Deb 10 November 1921 vol 148 c592

asked the Prime Minister what is the present position as to the trial of German criminals accused of crimes and offences in their treatment of our prisoners; and whether, in view of the breakdown of the Leipzig trials, this country, in conjunction with France, will demand the execution of the Treaty of Versailles and the surrender of these accused persons for trial?

The ATTORNEY - GENERAL (Sir Gordon Hewart)

I have been asked to reply. The present position is that Italy, at the end of July last, delivered the dossiers, in the cases which she is sending for trial, to the Supreme Court in Leipzig. Those cases will, I understand, be tried by the Court this autumn. When those cases have been tried, the committee of lawyers of the countries that submitted cases for trial in Leipzig, appointed by the Supreme Council in August last, to report to the Council upon the trials in Leipzig, will be in a position to meet and make their report. Until this report has been received and considered by the Supreme Council, any such action as is suggested would be premature.


In view of the atrocious crimes that have been proved against the German criminals at the Leipzig Court and the utterly inadequate sentences passed upon them, will the Government use their utmost efforts to bring the remainder of these criminals before a public tribunal?


Is it not the fact that in every case the Court imposed the highest sentence within their power?


I do not think the suggestion contained in the latter question is correct. With regard to the first, I must ask for notice.

Back to