Berlin court: Demjanjuk's deportation legal

Demjanjuk, charged with 29,000 cases of accessory to murder during WWII, alleged violation of rights.

July 8, 2009 13:57
1 minute read.
Berlin court: Demjanjuk's deportation legal

demjanjuk arrives in munich 248.88. (photo credit: AP)

Germany's highest court rejected on Wednesday an attempt by John Demjanjuk to challenge his recent deportation from the United States to Munich for trial on charges of being an accessory to murder at the Sobibor Nazi death camp. German Constitutional Court spokeswoman Anja Kesting said that the court would not take up Demjanjuk's challenge as it saw no grounds for violation of the 89-year-old's basic rights. Munich prosecutors accused Demjanjuk of being a guard at the death camp in Nazi-occupied Poland during World War II. They alleged that he was an accessory to murder in 29,000 cases and said they expected formal charges to be filed later this month. US authorities deported Demjanjuk from his suburban Ohio home on May 12. Last week, doctors in Germany determined that the alleged Nazi was fit to stand trial, so long as his time in court did not exceed two 90-minute sessions daily. Demjanjuk's health was a key issue in the extradition battle. Photos taken in April showed Demjanjuk wincing as immigration agents removed him from his home in Seven Hills, Ohio, during an earlier aborted attempt to deport him to Germany. Images taken days before and released by the US government showed him entering his car unaided. Demjanjuk says he was a Red Army soldier who spent World War II as a Nazi POW and never hurt anyone. But Nazi-era documents obtained by US justice authorities and shared with German prosecutors include a photo ID identifying Demjanjuk as a guard at the Sobibor death camp and say he was trained at an SS facility for Nazi guards at Trawniki, also in Poland. Efforts to prosecute the Ukrainian native began in 1977 and have involved courts and government officials from at least five countries on three continents. Charges of accessory to murder carry a maximum sentence of up to 15 years in prison in Germany.

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