[QODLink]
Americas

US Nazi suspect dies day before extradition

Johann Breyer, 89, day before government was due to approve extradition to face charges on role at Auschwitz death camp.

Last updated: 23 Jul 2014 18:07
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
A note is shown on the door to the home of Johann Breyer, saying "no comment" [AP]

A Philadelphia man suspected of being an SS guard at the Auschwitz death camp has died a day before the US government was set to approve his extradition to Germany.

Johann Breyer died on Tuesday night aged 89 at a Philadelphia hospital, his lawyer said on Wednesday. His death came on the same day that Timothy Rice, a magistrate, issued an order granting a request for extradition.

German prosecutors had hoped to try Breyer on charges of aiding in the murder of more than 200,000 Jews at the Auschwitz death camp. Breyer had said he was forced to work there as a guard as a teenager.

Rice had found probable cause that "Breyer is the same person sought for aiding and abetting murder in Germany", adding that no statute of limitations offers a safe haven for murder".

Breyer was being held on allegations stemming from his suspected service as an SS guard at Auschwitz during the second world war. US marshals arrested him in June outside his home in northeast Philadelphia.

He was facing charges of aiding in the killing of 216,000 Jewish men, women and children at a Nazi death camp.

Breyer claimed he was unaware of the slaughter at Auschwitz and then that he did not participate in it, but "the German allegations belie his claims", the judge wrote.

"Given Breyer's role as an elite SS armed guard at a camp designed and operated almost exclusively as a killing centre for Jews, Germany has established probable cause of Breyer's complicity in the mass murders at Auschwitz.''

German authorities in the Bavarian town of Weiden issued a warrant for Breyer's arrest in June 2013.

He was accused of 158 counts of accessory to murder - one count for each trainload of victims brought to the Auschwitz death camp in occupied Poland from May to October 1944, when Breyer was allegedly a guard there.

300

Source:
AP
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
Swathes of the British electorate continue to show discontent with all things European, including immigration.
Astronomers have captured images of primordial galaxies that helped light up the cosmos after the Big Bang.
Critics assail British photographer's portrayal of indigenous people, but he says he's highlighting their plight.
As Western stars re-release 1980s charity hit, many Africans say it's a demeaning relic that can do more harm than good.
Featured
No one convicted after 58 people gunned down in cold blood in 2009 in the country's worst political mass killing.
While hosting the World Internet Conference, China tries Tiananmen activist for leaking 'state secrets' to US website.
Once staunchly anti-immigrant, some observers say the conservative US state could lead the way in documenting migrants.
NGOs say women without formal documentation are being imprisoned after giving birth in Malaysia.
Public stripping and assault of woman and rival protests thereafter highlight Kenya's gender-relations divide.