An Italian prosecutor has asked a judge to put 17 former members of the Nazi SS on trial for their alleged role in the worst World War II-era civilian massacre in Italy, the 1944 slaughter of more than 700 people near Bologna, court officials said Monday.
Prosecutor Marco De Paolis asked Saturday that one officer and 16 enlisted personnel of the 16th SS Division stand trial for murder in a military court in the northern port town of La Spezia. The defendants are all in their 80s and live in Germany, De Paolis said.
Around the town of Marzabotto, a mountainous area south of Bologna, retreating Nazi troops carried out their worst civilian massacre on Italian soil. From Sept. 29, 1944, to Oct. 5, 1944, they slaughtered more than 700 people, mostly children, women and elderly, in what was ostensibly a hunt for resistance fighters.