BONN — The Soviet Union has again refused to agree to the release of 91-year-old Rudolf Hess, one-time deputy to Nazi leader Adolf Hitler, from Spandau Prison in West Berlin, a West German official said Friday.
Hess has been imprisoned since 1947 when he was sentenced to a life term at the Nuremberg war crimes trials and is Spandau's last remaining inmate. He is held under a four-power arrangement among the Soviets, Americans, British and French.
Hess reportedly suffers from chronic heart problems. The allied powers say they are willing to free Hess, but the Soviets have insisted he cannot be released.
Theo Waigel, an official of the Christian Socialist Union of Bavaria, told reporters in Bonn on Friday that Vladimir I. Terebilov, president of the Soviet Union's highest court, rejected any idea of freeing Hess.
Waigel was among a group of West German politicians who visited Moscow and met with Soviet officials to discuss a variety of subjects.
Hess was captured after parachuting into Scotland on May 10, 1941. He said he was on a mission to end World War II.