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Phillips Nuremberg Trials Collection: Trial 6 - I.G. Farben Case

Materials donated to the law school by General Eugene Phillips.

Summary of Charges

The IG Farben Trial was the second of three trials of leading industrialists of Nazi Germany for their conduct during the Nazi regime. (The two other industrialist trials were the Flick Case and the Krupp Case.)

The defendants in this case had all been directors of IG Farben, a large German conglomerate of chemical firms. The company had been a major actor in World War I, when their development of the Haber-Bosch process for nitrogen fixation helped German cope with their loss of access to the Chilean nitrate trade and allowed IG Farben to produce synthetic nitrate. (Nitrate is an important component for the fabrication of explosives such as gunpowder, dynamite or TNT.) In World War II, an IG Farben subsidiary, Degesch, manufactured Zyklon B, the poison gas used at the extermination camps (the other supplier of the gas was the firm Tesch/Stabenow). IG Farben also developed processes for synthesizing gasoline and rubber from coal, and thereby greatly contributed to Germany's ability to wage a war despite having been cut off from all major oil fields. The charges consequently centered on preparing to wage an aggressive war, but also on slave labor and plundering.

Counts: 1) Crimes Against Peace; 2) Spoliation; 3) Slave Labor; 4) Membership in the SS; and Conspiracy

 Original Indictment


*The Lousiana State University Law Library, Nuremberg Trials collection - a digital collection of papers collected by Paul M. Hebert during his tenure as a judge at the United States Military Tribunal at Nuremberg. The bulk of the papers comprise the transcripts of the trial of United States vs. Carl Krauch (the I.G. Farbenindustrie Trial) along with the prosecution and defense exhibits from that trial.

Trials of War Criminals Before the Nuernberg Military Tribunals Under Control Council Law No. 10

The 15-volume series, also known as “The Green Series,” focuses on the 12 trials of almost 200 defendants. This publication by the United States Government Printing Office is the official abridged record of the individual indictments and judgments, as well as the administrative materials that were common to all the trials.

Trial Records

Style of the case: United States of America v. Carl Krauch, et al.

Indictment filed: 3 May 1947

Trial dates: 27 August 1947 - 10 June 1948

NMT 6 Judges: Curtis Grover Shake (Indiana) (presiding judge); James Morris (North Dakota); Paul M. Hebert (Louisiana)*; and Clarence F. Merrell, (Indiana) (alternate judge)

Chief Prosecutor: Drexel A. Sprecher; Assistants: Belle Mayer Zeck

Judgment: 29 July 1948

Sentencing: 30 July 1948

Defendants Position Sentence
 Carl Krauch
  • Chairman of the Supervisory Board;
  • Member of Göring's Office of the Four-Year Plan
 6 years, including time served/td>
 Hermann Schmitz
  • Chairman of the Managing Board (CEO);
  • Member of the Reichstag
 4 years, including time served
 Georg von Schnitzler
  • Wehrwirtschaftsführer
  • Captain in the SA
 2½ years, including time served
 Fritz Gajewski
  • Director of AGFA
 Heinrich Hörlein
  • Head of chemical research
 August von Knierim
  • Chief Counsel
  • Head of the legal department
 Fritz ter Meer
  • Head of Dept. II, in charge of the chemical plant in Buna near Auschwitz
 7 years, including time served
 Christian Schneider
  • Head of Dept. I, in charge of nitrogen and gasoline production
  • Head of personnel dept.,
  • Supporting member of the SS
 Otto Ambros
  • Head of the chemical warfare committee at the war ministry
  • Production chief for Buna and Auschwitz
 8 years including time served
 Max Brüggemann
  • Plant leader
 removed from trial due to medical reasons
 Ernst Bürgin
  • Plant leader
 2 years including time served
 Heinrich Bütefisch
  • Production chief at Auschwitz
  • Obersturmbannführer in the SS
 6 years including time served
 Paul Häfliger
  • Head of the metals department
 2 years including time served
 Max Ilgner
  • Head of intelligence and propaganda
 3 years including time served
 Friedrich Jähne
  • Chief engineer
 1½ years including served
 Hans Kühne
  • Plant leader
 Carl Lautenschläger
  • Plant leader
 Wilhelm Mann
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Member of the SA
 Heinrich Oster
  • Manager of the Nitrogen Syndicate
 2 years including time served
 Karl Wurster
  • Plant leader
 Walter Dürrfeld
  • Head of construction at Auschwitz plant
  • Head of construction at Monowitz (Auschwitz III)
 8 years including time served
 Heinrich Gattineau
  • Intelligence and plant police
 Erich von der Heyde
  • Deputy of intelligence and plant police
  • Hauptsturmführer in the SS
  • Member of the OKW
 Hans Kugler
  • Head of sales for dye-stuffs for Southeastern Europe
 1½ years including time served.
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