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Legal Lore: The Hesse Crown Jewels Courts-Martial

In February 1946, less than one year after World War II had ended, Princess Sophie of Greece was preparing to marry Prince George Wilhelm of Hanover. The bride was to wear the Hesse family jewels during the ceremony, but when a servant was sent to retrieve the jewels from their hiding place in the Hesse family castle, they were gone—and presumed stolen. In fact, the jewels had been taken by three U.S. Army officers, and what follows is the story of their high-profile courts-martial for larceny and related offenses.