A SECOND World War veteran who oversaw the imprisonment of a leading Nazi has died aged 98.

George Smedley, of Whorlton, Teesdale, considered himself an orphan after his father died when he was just six months old.

Mr Smedley left school early and began a career with the Foreign Office as a filing clerk before rising through the ranks.

Working closely with the British Embassy, Mr Smedley joined the TA Artists Rifles when rumblings of a war began to spread across Europe and he served with the Army and Indian Army until 1946 when he was a captain.

After the war, he returned to the Foreign Office and was sent on postings to countries such as Brussels, Beirut and Baghdad.

He had a son, Robert, with his first wife Muriel while he was posted in Burma but was widowed following her death in 1975. He went on to have three more wives, Margaret, Marjorie and Margaret, and was widowed by all.

Mr Smedley said his father was a "brilliant" father as well as a devoted Christian and even adhered to his Christian values when he was in charge of the infamous Spandau Prison, in Germany, where Hitler's right-hand-man, Hess, was serving a life sentence.

He also completed a law degree in later life and served as a barrister.

After he retired, Mr Smedley enjoyed reading and forestry and was featured in the Who's Who list.

He died on May 2 and leaves behind his son, two grandsons and one great-granddaughter.