American teen gets suspended sentence for vandalizing Auschwitz barracks

The judge at a court in the town of Oswiecim said he was surprised that a yeshiva student would desecrate the site.

By JTA
December 5, 2017 12:43
Auschwitz-Birkenau

The Nazi slogan "Arbeit macht frei" (Work sets you free) is pictured at the gates of the former Nazi German concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz-Birkenau in Oswiecim, Poland January 27, 2017.. (photo credit: AGENCY GAZETA/KUBA OCIEPA/VIA REUTERS)

A Polish court gave a suspended one-year sentence to an American teenager for scratching his name on a barracks wall at Auschwitz.

Polish police arrested the yeshiva student, 17, in July after he was caught by a guide while etching his name into the interior wall, according to reports.

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The teen also was ordered to pay 1,000 zlotys, or $280, to the Auschwitz-Birkenau state museum. He did not appear at the court hearing.

The judge at a court in the town of Oswiecim said he was surprised that a yeshiva student would desecrate the site.

“This act was committed by a student of a religious school for future rabbis, so by someone who should be fully aware of the importance and nature of the former Auschwitz camp,” Judge Konrad Gwozdziewicz was reported as saying.

The judge also reportedly said that he ordered a light sentence because the teen expressed remorse and he was young.


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