Berliet family conviction overturned in 1949

The Second World War was not yet ended when France entered a dark period of self-purification. This era of suspicion and denunciations led to many arrests.

Arrested at home at the start of September 1944 under suspicion of collaboration, Marius Berliet, 78 years old, was immediately imprisoned and his factories and assets sequestered.

Under house arrest at Cannes, Marius Berliet wrote more than 2000 letters and notes. Shown here in 1948.

His four sons were also arrested a few days later. Their trial opened a year and a half later in 1946. On the 8th June, Marius Berliet was sentenced to 2 years in prison, commuted to house arrest and Paul Berliet to forced labour. All their property was confiscated, they were forbidden to stay in the Paris or Lyons regions and were condemned to 'national disgrace for life'.

Three years later, in 1949, several months after the death of Marius, the State Council rehabilitated his family and returned its factories. His son, Paul Berliet, resumed management of the company that had in the meantime attempted to operate under self-management.


Book : Marc Bergère (editor), L'épuration économique en France à la Libération, Presses universitaires de Rennes, 2008

Video archive : website of the INA, Les collaborateurs à la prison du fort de Montluc, available under, 1944

Source : Fondation Berliet