Friday, 26 October 1888
THE RITTER TRIAL, -- The following paragraph was published in the Times of yesterday: "On October 16 we published a summary of two letters on the Ritter trial, one from Dr. Josef S. Bloch, member of the Austrian Parliament, and the other, also from Vienna, from a "Lawyer of 20 Years Standing." Dr. Bloch denied, and our other correspondent affirmed the existence among the low-class Jews of Galicia of a superstition such as would account for the mutilation of the body of the woman for whose murder the Ritters were tried, and, it has been suggested, for the mutilations in the case of the Whitechapel murders. Dr. Adolf Stein, of Vienna, who acted as counsel for Ritter and his wife, now writes strongly corroborating Dr. Bloch's view of the case, and adding that, though the superstitions of thieves were mentioned at the trial, it was never asserted that the superstition was Jewish. Dr. Gotthelf Carl Mayer also writes from Vienna to the same effect, and states that the superstition in question was never proved at the trial as existing among the low-class Jews of Gallicia, and that the Ritters were finally acquitted by the Supreme Tribunal on the merits of the case, and not because the only witness against them died in prison. (We cannot allow this subject to be discussed any further in our columns.)"