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Ex-Nazi guard Demjanjuk probed for fatal 1947 car crash

AFP · 14 Dec 2009, 15:35

Published: 14 Dec 2009 15:35 GMT+01:00

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"A probe is under way to investigate allegations that he crashed into someone on purpose in 1947," a spokesman for the prosecutor's office in the southeastern city of Ulm, Michael Bischofberger, told AFP.

He said the now 89-year-old Demjanjuk was employed as a driver by the Allies in Germany after World War II.

The accusations were based on private inquiries but Bischofberger offered no further information on the alleged victim's identity or the circumstances of the crash. He did not confirm a media report that the person was Jewish.

"We are trying to obtain more precise information from Ludwigsburg on where the accused was employed at the time," Bischofberger said, referring to the federal office investigating Nazi-era crimes.

Demjanjuk went on trial in the southern German city of Munich last month accused of helping to murder 27,900 people while a guard at the Sobibor death camp in German-occupied Poland in 1943.

Story continues below…

It is likely to be the last major trial for war crimes committed under the Third Reich. The next hearing is scheduled for December 21.

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Your comments about this article

16:55 December 14, 2009 by Henckel
It would seem there is more to John Demjanjuk's story than he or his lawyers are willing to admit.
17:53 December 14, 2009 by bernie1927
Did this murder in 1947 take place in Germany, and why is only now something done about it?

Wouldn't a conviction for this incident be enough to put this guy away for the rest of his days, and couldn't you save the expense of the war crimes trial? Duh!
20:20 December 14, 2009 by Henckel
This guy is bad news ... In Richard Evans' "The Third Reich at War", published earlier this year, he states emphatically that Demjanjuk operated the gas machine at the Sobibor gas chamber, and that Demjanjuk multilated victims by chopping off their ears or noses. Evans consideres Demjanjuk's crimes proved, whatever the court may say.
20:30 December 14, 2009 by Mike in NYC
You picked up this story from "The Onion," right?
01:41 December 15, 2009 by blackminorcapullets

Your claims are not true - Demjanjuk was tried in Israel by the Supreme court on charges of being at Sobibor but the survivors who testified said he was never there.

And for him to be tried on traffic accidents 60 years after the fact is as ludicrous as US govt throwing evidence that would have freed Demjanjuk into a McDonalds dumpster!
03:59 December 15, 2009 by Gregorythegreat
What's funny is John was my neighbor in Ohio, and he was always up and going, NEVER anything stopping him,walking just as fast and brisk as a 20 year old in his step....... but when he got picked up from the US Marshall, and now you guys have him in Germany, he looks like he has been dead for the past 150 years !! This guy is JOKE !!! Can you say GUILTY !!! He needs to be stung up by his penis !! So sad to play the old folks card !!
06:14 December 15, 2009 by parografik
"A traffic accident?" Intentionally killing someone with a car is to traffic accident as kamikaze is to "flight delay."
08:46 December 15, 2009 by Bushdiver
Sounds to me like someone is just desperate to convict this guy on whatever. At 90 years old practically, it's crazy to even waste the time and money on this especially since even the survivors at Sobibor claim he wasn't there.
09:38 December 15, 2009 by rostguy
he is a good actor, try to portry that he is always sleeping.
12:16 December 15, 2009 by mobiusro
I imagine that something like this could ruin even a young man's health? He might have remorses and that eats one alive. Not to mention all the stress.

Not trying to pardon or accuse him, just an opinion.

But I do agree that at 90 years of age putting him through trial and then in jail does not really bring one anything. If he is remorseful, having to live with himself for so many years is enough of a punishment. In jail he will consume the tax payer's money.
00:06 December 16, 2009 by cbog76
Israel couldn't convict him and now germany wants to spend time and money trying. Since we can't have two countries looking like they don't have a clue, the courts will have to find him guilty. Sometimes the "political correctness" is just plain stupid.
01:48 December 16, 2009 by WRosencratz
Let this be fair warning to all those who would persecute Jews: you WILL be tracked down and brought to justice. When the last of the WWII Nazis die, the next target will be the Neo-Nazis, anti-Semites, radical racists, white supremacists and all others who seek bring about another genodical Nazi regime. For anyone who thinks persecuting or bashing Jews is acceptable: Ruen zolstu nisht afile in keyver.
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