NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- A federal appeals court has dismissed claims against the German government by heirs of an art dealer whose collection was seized by the Nazis and sold at auction during World War II.
Fred Westfield, a retired Nashville professor, filed the federal lawsuit seeking payment for the art and tapestry collection belonging to his uncle Walter Westfeld, a German art dealer in the 1930s.
According to the lawsuit, Westfeld attempted to send his art collection to Tennessee, where his brother lived, but Nazi officials seized and sold off the collection. Westfeld later died in the Auschwitz death camp in Poland. The 6th Circuit Court of Appeal ruled Wednesday that the claims against the German government were beyond its jurisdiction.