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Demjanjuk witness also suspected of mass murder involvement

DDP/DPA/The Local · 1 Nov 2009, 10:18

Published: 01 Nov 2009 10:18 GMT+01:00

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The 88-year-old man, named only as Samuel K., is “suspected of having been accessory to the cruel murder of at least 434,000 people,” according to Der Spiegel magazine, quoting the Central Office of State Justice Administration for the Clarification of National Socialist Crimes in Ludwigsburg.

K. has a similar war history to that of Demjanjuk, but has never faced justice. Like Demjanjuk, he was recruited by the SS into the Trawnikis as a helper for the mass murder in Eastern Europe.

He worked as a guard at the Belzec extermination camp, according to the report, and held a higher rank than Demjanjuk.

He has been questioned by German authorities a number of times since 1969, and was even interviewed by Bavarian criminal investigators in June this year.

“It was clear to all of us that the Jews were being exterminated there, and later also burned,” he told them of his time in Belzec.

The investigation into K. is still in its preliminary stages, the magazine said.

Demjanjuk’s trial starts on November 30 in Munich. He is charged with 27,900 counts of accessory to murder for his part in the gassing of prisoners taken at the Sobibor camp in occupied Poland.

The trial is likely to command global attention, and around 20 of the 35 people have filed ancillary suits for close relatives killed in the camp are expected to attend.

Cornelius Nestler, a law professor in Cologne representing around 30 of the relatives, said the trial was revolutionary in that it would not only focus on what the accused had done.

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“Here it is about the extermination machinery in which Demjanjuk had a function,” he said.

Demjanjuk becoming a Trawniki is understandable, as he wanted to save himself, said Nestler.

“His staying in Sobibor no longer had anything to do with rescue. While all around him in Eastern Europe the dangers of war threatened, the life in Sobibor was pleasant for the Trawniki – at the price of taking part in the continuing murder of thousands of Jews.”

DDP/DPA/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

14:44 November 1, 2009 by crunchy2k
This appears to be unraveling into Germany's darkest post war drama. Two ex-patriots being pitted against each other by people not even born then.
17:35 November 1, 2009 by wxman
The longer this goes on, the angrier I get. Relentlessly hounding two old men, who probably won't survive their trials, is the real criminality here. Two youthful nobodies at the time who in all probability did nothing wrong. Demjanjuk was just a camp guard and didn't execute anyone, and that poor Dutch guy who simply shot partisans as an act of war did not commit a crime. All of this to assuage German collective guilt for allowing a madman to drag the whole world to the precipice of hell. The German people should be on trial for Christ's sake.
00:03 November 2, 2009 by edwards629
These monsters should never have one day of rest even in their old age. Time should never be a reason to let these evil people have rest. They murderd inocent people and this one was not german so he didnt even have to join, he choose to so that even shows he was more than willing to join and help a group of people who murderd inocent people including little children. I understand inocent people die in war and sometimes soldiers end up killing people by accident. But a person like this is not what i call a soldier, he's a coward. I hope he suffers in his death. And wxman you say two old men what about the old people he help send to their death or the little children. Oh and by the way you say for christ's sake, christ dont want this animal.
12:47 November 2, 2009 by William Thirteen
unfortunately for the victims of these and other atrocities, in wartime and in peacetime - the past is now and always present.
17:10 November 2, 2009 by edwards629
Alcala you say young germans, so are you a former nazi. Tell me if it was your family that was gased or if you as a child had experiments done on you by josef mengele and were luckly enough to live threw it, would you then feel that time should matter. And young germans dont have to carry this around, what they have to do is show respect to the victims and tell these animals "we might be another generation but you killers get no rest under us" but when a young person says leave them alone, they are in fact saying what you did don't matter.
22:11 November 2, 2009 by -GD-
The fact of the matter is that this man is innocent. He has not been convicted of anything. Contradictory and biased "eyewitness" testimony is not evidence, it's allegation.

It is up to the prosecution to present forensic evidence that proves not only that murder took place, but also the specific nature of the weapon used in the murder. They would then also have to prove Demjanjuk¦#39;s accessory to that murder.

Short of any forensic evidence, this case is nothing more than a soviet show trial. A witch hunt based on hearsay, pre-conceived notions, and denouncements.

All Germans should just stand up and say prove it.
16:37 November 3, 2009 by edwards629
Tell me something GD if one your children was raped and murderd in a back yard, and the person who owned the yard guarded the gate while it was going on but didnt do it himself, would you then demand that person be arrested, of course your going to and this is no differnt. But anyway that aside GD let me focus on something else, i did find it quite amusing when you hacked into my password last week, and if you want to keep doing it i'm also ok with that, but i'm going warn you that i do look at it as a challenge and i will come back on you for it. See i had something like this happen to me about 5 years ago and after about 3 months of a back fourth type thing i had his mothers name and his sister's phone number for which i made use of, i also got his wife's maiden name among other things, so i'll just cut to chase if you wanna play i'm game for it but your getting a fair warning.
00:32 November 4, 2009 by -GD-
Gratuitous name-calling coupled with absurd analogies, supported by bizarre accusations and blatantly transparent threats upon myself and my family do not address the topic of discussion, nor do they constitute forensic evidence in this case.
00:51 November 4, 2009 by edwards629
"Take it anyway you want it pecker head"
15:53 November 4, 2009 by Scottrocks9
I tkink George W. Bush and Tony Blair should also be charged with a few hundred thousand counts of murder in Iraq. And the evidence is there and was there for all to see.Why is no one doing anything about these war criminals that are still right here in our midst? I mean, I mean.... what's good for the goose is...
16:18 November 4, 2009 by edwards629
Just look at this here we are in the year 2009 and we still have people that are willing to defend people who had millions of inocent men, women and children sent to their death. Many of the deaths were the same day they arrived at the camps with females holding their babys and in some case's had their children sent the gas chamber while they worked the mother and father to death, then we had josef mengle doing experiments on children, I can go on. But anyway again here we are in the year 2009 and there's still a few slugs around that defend these people, like everyone of you. Your a bunch of low life's.
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