Wiesenthal Center criticizes German authorities in hunt for Nazi doctor

The Simon Wiesenthal Center criticized German judicial authorities in Baden-Baden on Friday, accusing them of obstructing the hunt for former Nazi SS doctor Aribert Heim. Efraim Zuroff, the top Nazi hunter at the Jewish human rights organization, said the judge in charge of the case had disallowed German police requests on several occasions for telephone taps of Heim's relatives and an old friend who had been in contact with the fugitive. "We only recently learned of the extent of the obstructionism," Zuroff said in a telephone interview from Israel, saying such taps in other cases were "routinely approved." The spokesman for the Baden-Baden state court, where Heim was indicted in absentia on hundreds of counts of murder in 1979, did not immediately return phone calls for comment.