National Socialistic dictatorship

Given the past history of the Procurator General’s Office and the way the heads of that office regarded their role, it was almost a foregone conclusion that it would not continue under the Third Reich. The Decree dated 28 February 1939, German Reich Gazette I, p. 358, summarily provided that the Supreme Court of Justice and the Procurator General’s Office were abolished (Sec. 1) and the latter’s functions transferred to the General Public Prosecutor’s Office of the German Reich (Sec. 2). In this way, the Procurator General’s Office was obliged to “cease to exist” for the second time within a century, events which were significantly always accompanied by the loss of political liberty and the failure of the rule of law.

Special mention should be made of the tragic fate of the last Procurator General of the First Republic, Dr. Robert Winterstein, who was arrested following the Anschluss and murdered in a concentration camp.

Historische Fotografie: Dr. Robert Winterstein
Dr. Robert Winterstein