The trial opened in West Berlin's Criminal Court today (Thursday February 25) of a West German charged with the attempted murder of a Soviet soldier.
The trial opened in West Berlin's Criminal Court today (Thursday February 25) of a West German charged with the attempted murder of a Soviet soldier. The man, 21-year-old Ekkehard Weil, is accused of shooting a soldier guarding the Soviet war memorial in the British sector of Berlin.
Weil is being tried by a British Military Government High Court presided over by a judge who until recently sat at the Central Criminal Court in London.
Weil's lawyer, Herr Wilhelm Heins, declared that 25 years after the end of World War 11, a British military law could no longer be applied to German citizens. He said, however, that his client was prepared to give evidence for political reasons.
The Prosecutor, Sir David Hughes Morgan, argued that British legal authority in West Berlin was unquestioned. He went on to say that Weil was charged with firing two shots at the Soviet guard who was seriously wounded in the stomach and arm.
Five Russians, three soldiers and two civilians, were at the court today to give evidence. The trial is expected to go on for another three days.
Weil was taken into the court by a back way and it was not possible to film him.