Demjanjuk trial postponed due to health issues

June 29, 2010 19:09


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John Demjanjuk's son accused a German court Tuesday of pushing ahead with a trial on allegations that his father served as a Nazi death camp guard despite what he said were indications the 90-year-old's health is deteriorating.

Tuesday's court session was canceled after Demjanjuk, a former Ohio autoworker deported from the U.S. to Germany in May 2009 to stand trial, was hospitalized with dangerously low blood hemoglobin levels.

Demjanjuk suffers from a number of ailments and sessions have been canceled at least eight times since the trial began Nov. 30 — usually for issues with his hemoglobin levels.

Presiding Judge Ralph Alt said in a short statement in the courtroom that Demjanjuk was given a blood transfusion, and that the trial should be able to resume with him present on Wednesday.

Ukranian-born Demjanjuk had his U.S. citizenship revoked in 1981 after the Justice Department alleged he hid his past as the notorious Treblinka guard "Ivan the Terrible." He was extradited to Israel, where he was found guilty and sentenced to death in 1988, only to have the conviction overturned five years later as a case of mistaken identity.

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