Krispy Kreme Owners Discover Nazi Past

German family will donate $11M to charity
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Mar 25, 2019 2:09 AM CDT
In this May 27, 2016 photo, family spokesman Peter Harf, who heads the Reimanns' JAB Holding Company, is pictured in Berlin, Germany.   (Soeren Stache/dpa via AP)

(Newser) – One of Germany's richest families, whose company owns a controlling interest in Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Panera Bread, Pret a Manger, and other well-known businesses, plans to donate millions to charity after learning about their ancestors' enthusiastic support of Adolf Hitler and use of forced laborers under the Nazis, according to a report Sunday. In a four-page report, the Bild newspaper reported that documents uncovered in Germany, France, and the US reveal that Albert Reimann Sr. and Albert Reimann Jr. used Russian civilians and French POWs as forced laborers. Family spokesman Peter Harf, who is one of two managing partners of the Reimanns' JAB Holding Company, said recent internal research confirmed Bild's findings.

"It is all correct," he said. "Reimann senior and Reimann junior were guilty ... they belonged in jail." The father and son, who died in 1954 and 1984, did not talk about the Nazi era and the family had thought that all of the company's connection to the Nazis had been revealed in a 1978 report, Harf said. But after reading documents kept by the family, the younger generation began to ask questions and commissioned a University of Munich historian in 2014 to examine the Reimann history more thoroughly. Harf said the family would donate 10 million euros ($11.3 million) to a not-yet-determined charity as a gesture, and once the historian's report is complete, it will be released to the public, the AP reports. "The whole truth must be put on the table," he said. "There is nothing to gloss over. These crimes are disgusting."

(Read more Nazi Germany stories.)

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