100-Year-Old Former Death Camp Guard to Go on Trial in Germany

FRANKFURT (Reuters) —
The entrance to the Sachsenhausen Nazi death camp with the phrase ‘Arbeit macht frei‘ (Work sets you free) set into  the ironwork of the gate during International Holocaust Remembrance Day in Oranienburg, about 30 km (18 miles), north of Berlin, Germany, in 2019. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber, file)

A 100-year-old former guard at the Sachsenhausen Nazi concentration camp near Berlin will face trial in the autumn, 76 years after the end of the Second World War, German weekly Welt am Sonntag reported.

The district court of Neuruppin admitted the charges of accessory to murder in 3,500 cases, and the trial is slated to start in October. The defendant should be able to stand trial for 2 to 2½ hours a day, a court spokesman told the paper.

The court was not available for comment at the weekend.

The accused, who was not named in accordance with German media laws concerning suspects, was said to have worked as a camp guard from 1942 to 1945 in Sachsenhausen, where around 200,000 people were imprisoned and 20,000 murdered.

While the number of suspects in Nazi crimes is dwindling, prosecutors are still trying to bring individuals to justice. A landmark conviction in 2011 cleared the way to more prosecutions as working in a concentration camp was for the first time found to be grounds for culpability with no proof of a specific crime.

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