A Jewish family whose retail empire was confiscated by the Nazis won compensation this week, in one of the largest restitution cases since World War II. Gunther Wertheim fled to America in 1939, after the Nazi government seized his chain of Berlin department stores. A court ruled this week that Karstadt-Quelle, the company that now owns the Wertheim properties, must pay the family $25 million for two of the properties, with a possible further $200 million to come. Wertheim’s daughter, Barbara Principe, now 71, said she didn’t know about her family’s former fortune until she visited Berlin in 2001, and saw one of the stores with her father’s name on it.
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