Austrian councilman resigns over Nazi tattoo

Gerry Leitmann, 31, said he did not realize his "Blut und Ehre" tattoo was the slogan of the Hitler Youth, vows to have it removed.

June 1, 2011 10:40
1 minute read.
Yad Vashem [Illustrative photo]

Yad Vashem 311. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)

A member of a southern Austrian village's municipal council has stepped down following an uproar over his Nazi-inspired tattoo.

In a resignation letter sent to the village's mayor, dated May 30, Gerry Leitmann, 31, said he was not aware of his tattoo's "historic connections" and will have it removed immediately, according to The Associated Press.

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The tattoo reads "Blut und Ehre" -- translated into English as "Blood and Honor," which was the slogan and motto of the Hitler Youth. It is inked on Leitmann's upper arm.

Local Ebenthal politicians first saw the tattoo at a council meeting last week when Leitmann wore a short-sleeved shirt, the Austrian Independent newspaper reported.

Even if he removes it, Leitmann could still face jail time or fines under Austria's federal anti-Nazi mind-set law, regarded as one of the strictest in the world.

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