Germany May Stage New War Crimes Trial
Germany may stage a further spectacular Holocaust trial in addition to the one currently taking place in Munich against alleged SS helper John Demjanjuk.
The Central Office for the Investigation of National Socialist Crimes based in Ludwigsburg has completed its preliminary investigation into Samuel K. and produced an 80-page report. It will transfer the case to the public prosecutor's office in the city of Dortmund which may soon file charges against the 88-year-old ethnic German, who is accused of having been involved in the murder of at least 430,000 Jews in the Belzec death camp in occupied Poland between end-November 1941 and spring 1943. He is alleged to have been a guard at the camp.
K., a retired civil servant who now lives near the former West German capital Bonn, is accused of having shot dead Jewish prisoners himself on two occasions, according to the testimony of a former fellow guard who has since died. A survivor of Belzec described him as "one of the biggest murderers," according to the Ludwigsburg report.
K., a former member of staff in the West German Ministry for Regional and City Planning, was born in 1921 in the Soviet Union, and entered German service in the summer of 1941 when he was a Soviet prisoner of war. He received German citizenship three years later.
K. has appeared as a witness in several other cases but has until now never become the focus of an investigation himself. His name resurfaced during preparations for the Demjanjuk trial and he was questioned last year by officers from the Bavarian police.
An investigator from the Ludwigsburg office then collected incriminating information on him, including documents collated by the US Department of Justice in Eastern European archives.
comments powered by Disqus
- The Memorial Where Slavery Is Real
- Thomas Piketty accuses Germany of forgetting history as it lectures Greece
- Greek ‘No’ May Have Its Roots in Heroic Myths and Real Resistance
- 150 years later, schools are still a battlefield for interpreting Civil War
- Where are America's memorials to pain of slavery, black resistance?
- Historian: "I don’t want my students to simply choose sides in a polemic between heritage and hate"
- Harvard’s Nancy Cott says the conservatives in the gay marriage case have a stilted idea of the history of marriage
- Did a historian who said he’s a victim of McCarthyism get the story wrong?
- Stephanie Coontz’s work on the history of marriage cited by the Supreme Court.
- How Does It Feel To Have One’s Work as a Historian Cited by the Supreme Court? Cool. Very Cool. Thank You Very Much.