The first war criminal hanged in the Czech Republic after the Second World War was judged by a five-man people’s court tribunal, four of whom were survivors of Nazi concentration camps. They sentenced Joseph Pfitzner to death for his collaboration activities with the Nazis – he was the deputy mayor of Prague during the Nazi occupation.

Pfitzner claimed that he had saved many people from the Germans, but the court heard that he helped pave the way for the Nazi occupation and had determinedly “Germanised” Prague. The prosecutor produced a photograph of Pfitzner wearing an SS officer’s uniform, which helped to seal his fate. He was hanged on Thursday, September 6th, 1945.