Beautiful New York

A Celebration of the City

It Happened Today in New York City

On June 28, 1942, the FBI captured eight German marines in civilian clothes on Long Island. The Germans had landed in a U-boat and brought explosives ashore, apparently intended for such targets as the Hell Gate Bridge and Newark Penn Station, among others. Their subsequent hearing in front of the U.S. Supreme Court sparked a national controversy that continues to this day, centering on whether an accused spy should face a military tribunal or a trial in civil court. The debate rages on today when applied to the question of how the U.S. government should try suspected terrorists. All eight defendants were sentenced to death (though two had their sentences commuted).

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