Austrian Jew to take restitution case to European rights court

By REUTERS
April 4, 2014 18:27

 
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VIENNA - A Jewish critic of Austria's post-war record in returning property plundered by the Nazis plans to take his case to the European Court of Human Rights after receiving a jail sentence last year when his own restitution claim went sour.

Stephan Templ, 53, an architectural historian living in Prague, was sentenced to three years in jail for defrauding the Alpine republic after failing to name his aunt in a restitution claim for a hospital building near Vienna's famous Ringstrasse.

The state argued that the aunt, Elisabeth Kretschmer, could have relinquished her stake in the building, which was seized from its Jewish owner after Nazi Germany's annexation of Austria in 1938, and that this share would have reverted to the state.

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