Los Angeles Times | 01May2009 | Michael Muskal
Demjanjuk may be deported, U.S.
appeals court rules
The family of John
Demjanjuk, 89, who is accused of being a Nazi death camp guard, says it
will appeal the ruling. The U.S. will continue to seek his removal to
Germany to face charges.
A federal appeals court has rejected arguments that John Demjanjuk, a
retired Ohio autoworker accused of being a guard in a Nazi death camp,
be spared from being deported to Germany to face charges of being an
accessory to murder during World War II.
In a decision posted today on its website, the 6th U.S. Circuit Court
of Appeals in Cincinnati rejected a stay of deportation for Demjanjuk.
His family announced that they will seek to appeal the ruling, which
clears the way for the 89-year-old to be deported.
In Germany, Demjanjuk faces charges that he served as a guard in a
Nazi-run camp in occupied Poland in 1943. Demjanjuk, who has been
fighting deportation for decades, has maintained he was a Ukrainian
taken by the Nazis as a prisoner of war.
On April 14,2009 immigration officers carried Demjanjuk in his
wheelchair out of his suburban Cleveland home to take him to a jet
bound for Germany. But the deportation was blocked by the appeals court
while it considered Demjanjuk's argument that he was too sick to be
forced out of the United States.
Demjanjuk has said he suffers severe back and leg pain as well as
"Based on the medical information before the court and the government's
representations about the conditions under which it will transport the
petitioner, which include an aircraft equipped as a medical air
ambulance and attendance by medical personnel, the court cannot find
that the petitioner's removal to Germany is likely to cause irreparable
harm sufficient to warrant a stay of removal," the appeals court said
in its ruling.
The U.S. government will continue to seek the removal of Demjanjuk to
Germany, though there was no indication when that would happen.
Demjanjuk arrived in the United States in 1951. He was deported to
Israel, where he was tried as the Nazi guard "Ivan the Terrible" who
served at Treblinka. He was convicted in 1988, but Israel's highest
court later overturned the conviction.
note that Muskal does not mention that the Sixth Circuit Court of
Appeals under Judge Gilbert Merritt ruled that the OSI was guilty of
"prosecutorial misconduct constituting fraud on the court" in obtaining
the 1981 denaturalization and the 1986 extradition of John Demjanjuk to
He returned to Cleveland and his U.S. citizenship was restored in 1998.
But a U.S. court convicted him in 2002 of working at other Nazi camps.
He was again stripped of citizenship, and U.S. officials moved to
deport him to face German charges including accessory to murder for
allegedly assisting in the deaths of 29,000 Jews at the Sobibor camp.