A 95-year-old Nazi who worked at Auschwitz when Anne Frank’s family arrived is in court Monday for the fourth time for war crimes during World War II.
Hubert Zafke is charged with crimes over the course of a one-month period at Auschwitz, from Aug. 15 to Sept. 14, 1944. In that brief period of time, Zafke is charged with having been an accessory to the murder of 3,681 prisoners.
During World War II, Adolf Hitler’s Nazis and their allies killed over six million Jews in the Holocaust. Over one million people lost their lives to Hitler’s barbarism at Auschwitz during the war — most of those murdered were Jewish.
Zafke, an SS Medic, was brought into Neubrandenburg State Court in a wheelchair to answer for his time as a Nazi at Auschwitz. The former medic’s trial was supposed to get underway in February, but was postponed thrice because of health issues.
Zafke’s lawyers claim he suffers from high blood pressure, thoughts of suicide and general poor health. Zafke has said that while working at Auschwitz he only dealt with injured soldiers, not with prisoners. Prosecutors dismissed his defense, saying Zafke knew what was going on.
It has become a race against time to prosecute Nazis, as many die before or during their trials. John Demjanjuk, a concentration camp guard that was found to be living in Ohio, died in 2012 at 91 before he stood trial. Another Nazi, Ernst Tremmel, passed away in April, just one week before his trial was about to start.
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