The opinion of the court was delivered by: HULBERT
Petitioner, a native and national of Germany, filed his petition for naturalization on November 28, 1940. The question presented for determination is whether petitioner has established his attachment to the principles of the Constitution and a favorable disposition to the good order and happiness of the United States for the period required by law.
Petitioner lawfully entered the United States on January 13, 1904, and has been absent from this country on 35 occasions from that date until 1939. These absences were occasioned by annual trips to Germany and other European countries, none of which lasted as long as a year.
A summary of the more important facts from the rather voluminous record in this case is necessary to an understanding of the Government's opposition to this petition, and to the Court's disposition.
Petitioner married in 1915 in New York City, and was divorced by his wife in 1939. His wife was naturalized on May 17, 1923 in New York.
Petitioner was associated with the Krupp-Nirosta Corp., incorporated in the State of Delaware (later renamed Nirosta Corp.), first as a member of the board of directors in 1930; as secretary in 1931; as treasurer in 1932; and as president in 1935 which office he held until 1942, when the corporation was taken over by the Alien Property Custodian. The Krupp firm of Germany owned approximately 51% of the stock of Krupp-Nirosta, the remainder being held mainly by American steel companies.
Krupp-Nirosta was formed in about 1928 for the purpose of holding and licensing the use of stainless steel patents which were owned by the Fried. Krupp A. G., and others. The record indicates that sometime in 1937 the German Krupp Company transferred its interest in Krupp-Nirosta to a Dutch bank, which later transferred it to a Swiss corporation. These transactions, however, appear to have been merely pro forma, so that the Krupps of Germany retained majority control of Krupp-Nirosta.
On December 7, 1939, petitioner wrote a letter to an official of the German Krupp corporation in which he stated in part that American industry was making every effort to obtain overseas markets, particularly in South America, which markets were no longer available to German industry by reason of the war. He informed the German Krupp corporation that it would be in its interest to inform its customers that they might direct their inquiries to Krupp-Nirosta or to the petitioner personally. He stated that the German company would participate on a commission basis in such transactions, and that by this method the German company would keep its foreign contacts for future use after the war. The German company, however, never accepted this proposal.
In 1942, petitioner's residence and place of business were searched by federal authorities, and he was taken into custody. In his home were found books and pamphlets by prominent Nazis, including Rudolph Hess, Herrman Goering, and Adolph Hitler, most of which were available on the open market in this country.
The Government also presented several letters, written by petitioner either personally or in his official capacity as an officer of Krupp-Nirosta which it contends, indicate that petitioner felt favorably towards the German war effort. The Court feels that this contention is met by petitioner's explanations.
After his apprehension in 1942, petitioner was given a hearing before Enemy Alien Hearing Board on November 11, 1942 which recommended that petitioner should be paroled because he was not thought to be 'potentially dangerous'. Nevertheless, in January 1943, the Attorney General ordered the petitioner interned.
Subsequently the petitioner was transferred from Ellis Island to Fort Lincoln, N.D., and a rehearing was had there before another Board on which the Government was represented by a Special Assistant Attorney General. This Board likewise recommended the release of the petitioner, and this finding was concurred in by the Government representative. However, the report was again not acceptable to the Attorney General, and petitioner's confinement was continued.
Petitioner was again transferred to Ellis Island so that he might appear as a witness before a Federal Grand Jury at Trenton, New Jersey, in connection with a prosecution of certain steel companies some of whom had a minority interest in the Krupp-Nirosta.
In August, 1945 a third hearing was held before a Repatriation Board, consisting of three members of the staff of the Attorney General directly connected with the operation of the Enemy Alien Bureau. This board recommended the petitioner for repatriation 'on the ground that Schill was a significant instrument of German economic warfare'.
Petitioner was temporarily paroled for hospitalization in December 1945, and was ordered removed from the United States in January 1946. This order, however, was not served upon him until June 1946, because of his illness. In July 1946, petitioner was unconditionally released pursuant to an order of ...