Nazi 'hangman' dies after life of liberty in Germany

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Herbertus Bikker, a wanted Dutch Nazi war criminal known as 'the hangman of Ommen', has died aged 93.

Although he died last year, German police have only now confirmed that he was buried in the Ruhr city of Hagen after dieing peacefully, aged 93, at home.

Bikker, a member of the Waffen SS, became infamous as De Beul van Ommen for his cruelty while serving as a prison guard at the Erika concentration camp, in the Dutch province of Overijssel.

He also served in an elite SS regiment on the Eastern Front and took part in Nazi punishment raids in the Netherlands.

After the war, Bikker was sentenced to death the murder of the Dutch resistance fighter Jan Houtman in November 1944, during an SS raid.

His sentence was commuted to life-long imprisonment without parole but in 1952 he escaped from a jail in Breda with six other war criminals and fled to Germany.

As a former Waffen-SS soldier, Bikker became a naturalised German citizen and could not be extradited to the Netherlands after he was finally tracked down in 1995.

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