- MH370 Tragedy: 'Unidentified material' under investigation
- S. Korea Ferry incident: Body of boy who raised alarm believed found
- Obama lookalike takes it in stride
- MH370 Tragedy: MAS has settled about 96 per cent claims from Chinese families
- Firefly flight forced to turn back shortly after take off
- MH370 Tragedy: New independent international investigative team established
- MH370 Tragedy: No hesitation from Petronas to find new assets for search
- Dog attack victim doesn't want family to know ordeal
- Siberian husky crashes car into Mercedes in supermarket
- US actress Jodie Foster marries girlfriend
- Man died while trying to save a puppy
- Proton eyes China production
- MISSING MH370: Co-pilot's brothers seen carry clothes and toiletries
- S'gor police bust biggest money laundering syndicate
- Search to go on, says Aussie PM More
30 Auschwitz guards to face criminal probes: Germany
LUDWIGSBURG, Germany / Baden-Württemberg: The German office investigating Nazi war crimes said Tuesday it would send files on 30 former Auschwitz death camp personnel to state prosecutors with a recommendation to pursue charges.
Chief investigator Kurt Schrimm told reporters that the suspects were former Auschwitz guards now aged up to 97 and would face possible charges of accessory to murder. “The cases will be handed over to the respective public prosecutor’s offices,” Schrimm said.
Schrimm’s Central Office for the Investigation of National Socialist Crimes in the southwestern city of Ludwigsburg has carried out more than 7,000 probes but has no powers to charge suspects itself.
Instead it sends case files to regional prosecutors who then decide whether to pursue probes against suspects, who must also be judged fit to stand trial by the courts.
The investigative office, set up in 1958, said it had initially identified 49 former guards at the camp in what was Nazi-occupied Poland who were still alive but nine had since died. Thirty live in Germany and will now be subject to criminal investigation.
Another seven live abroad and the investigation against them in Ludwigsburg is still ongoing. Two people could not be found, the office said, and one had already been under investigation in the southern city of Stuttgart.
More than 6,000 SS personnel served at Auschwitz, where about 1.1 million Jews, Roma and Sinti and members of other persecuted groups died in gas chambers or of forced labour, sickness and starvation.
For more than 60 years German courts only prosecuted Nazi war criminals if evidence showed they had personally committed atrocities, but since a 2011 landmark case all former camp guards can be tried.
In that year a Munich court sentenced John Demjanjuk to five years in prison for complicity in the extermination of more than 28,000 Jews at the Sobibor camp, where he had served as a guard.
The announcement from Ludwigsburg came a day after the start of a trial in Germany of a 92-year-old former SS officer for the murder of a Dutch resistance fighter nearly 70 years ago.
As the proceedings opened in the western town of Hagen, Dutch-born Siert Bruins, who is a German national, was deemed fit enough for the trial to sit for up to three hours a day. He faces a life sentence if found guilty.
Since the Nuremberg Trials in 1945-1946, around 106,000 German or foreign-born Nazi soldiers have been accused of war crimes.
About 13,000 have been found guilty and around half sentenced, according to the Ludwigsburg office. -- AFP