Fox News | 17Jun2010 | David Rising, Andrea Jarach
Prosecutors open investigation
into Demjanjuk witness that defense accuses of perjury
MUNICH (AP) — Munich prosecutors said Thursday they have opened an
investigation into a former U.S. Secret Service forensics expert who
testified at the John Demjanjuk trial following a motion from the
defense accusing the witness of perjury.
Trial prosecutor Hans-Joachim Lutz told The Associated Press that his
office was obliged to open the investigation against former agent Larry
Stewart, who testified in Munich last week, after defense attorney
Ulrich Busch filed a complaint with the court accusing him of perjury.
Busch argued Stewart's Munich testimony contradicted statements he had
made in U.S. District Court in Ohio in 2001 -- the year after he
examined documents being used as evidence against Demjanjuk.
[W.Z. A summary of the testimony of Larry Stewart in the 2001 Demjanjuk denaturalization trial is archived at
On XoXoL, Stewart's testimony from 30May 2001 is at
Lutz refused to comment on the possibility of charges being filed,
saying the evidence first had to be examined.
Stewart rejected the allegation, telling the AP in a phone call from
California that his two testimonies did not contradict one another.
"I was asked different questions this time, so I answered the questions
I was asked," he said.
Demjanjuk, a retired Ohio autoworker who turned 90 in April, is
standing trial on some 28,060 counts of accessory to murder on
allegations he was a guard at the Nazi's Sobibor death camp in occupied
Poland. He denies ever being at any camp, claiming he is the victim of
But the prosecution argues, among other things, that a Nazi-era
identity card has Demjanjuk's picture on it and indicates he was a
guard at Sobibor.
Stewart, who analyzed the identity card and 21 other documents being
used in the case in 2000 by the U.S. Department of Justice's Office of
Special Investigations, told the court last week he found staple holes
through the photograph but not through the card itself.
He told the Munich state court that indicates the photograph -- which is
now glued to the document -- was once stapled to another piece of paper.
Stewart said, however, that did not necessarily mean it was a forgery,
testifying that in his experience photographs often fell off wartime
documents as they aged and were then stapled to separate pieces of
paper in postwar archives. He said the fact that there was no rust
around the staple holes indicated that they were made after the war,
when iron staples were no longer used.
But according to the 2001 testimony from Ohio, which Busch provided the
court, Stewart said at that time he had not determined that the holes
were from a staple, did not know whether there were similar holes in
other service passes, and that he had not looked for holes in the
identity card itself.
"I was looking at the ink, the paper, and the photograph, and the holes
didn't have anything to do with that in my opinion," Stewart said,
according to a transcript.
But Stewart said in the telephone interview that in preparation for the
Munich case he went over his original findings again, and was also able
to examine the original ID card again when he was asked about it in
"In this case they had the original card, and they had me come up to
the judge and they asked me specific questions about the holes," he
Stewart added that he would be happy to return to Munich and answer any
additional questions they had.
He testified in Munich over the objections of Demjanjuk's defense team
because he had been charged with perjury in 2004 in the United States
when he was an expert witness in an unrelated trial. Busch argued that
even though he was acquitted by a jury of those charges, it made his
Stefan Schuenemann, an attorney for a Sobibor survivor who joined the
trial as co-plaintiff as allowed under German law, said that if Busch
found Stewart's testimony contradictory, he should have questioned him
about it in court last week.
"He had the chance to ask him directly here about it, and he didn't,"
Schuenemann told AP.
Perjury can carry up to 5 years in prison in Germany, depending upon
the severity of the case.
A summary of the testimony of Larry Stewart in the 2001 Demjanjuk denaturalization trial is archived at
At the end, I conclude as follows:
As a result
of the testimony of U.S. Secret Service employee, Larry Stewart, my
perception of the Trawniki ID card (Demjanjuk #1393) has changed
somewhat. During his testimony in the 1987 Jerusalem trial, Gideon
Epstein listed at least 7 different colors of writing and markings on
the card.[T005792] The purple Russian Cyrillic handwriting was
presumably written by Ukr. MGB translator, Z. Bazilevskaya on March 12,
1948. My mental image was that the other handwriting and markings had
been added long after that date, when the KGB was preparing to release
the Demjanjuk accusations to the West.
however, insists that these markings are a characteristic of documents
from the Nürnberg Trials era. Thus, it is possible that these markings
could have been present before Ms. Bazilevskaya got hold of them or
were added shortly thereafter. This is why it is so important to
establish a chain of custody (as much as possible) of all the documents
associated with the John Demjanjuk case.
scenario is correct, the whole John Demjanjuk trial simply becomes an
extension of the infamous Nürnberg War Crimes Trials of the 1940s,
where the Victors wreaked vengeance upon the Vanquished, while
minimizing their own complicity in war crimes and crimes against
as in the case of Epstein, it is impossible to verify Stewart's
testimony without access to the documents in question.]
On XoXoL, Stewart's testimony from 30May 2001 is at
While re-reading Stewart's testimony from 2001, I was struck by the following items:
(1) Forms were printed on an offset press [as claimed by Lehner years earlier] (p164,line6 and p182, lines3-8)
(2) There is
a match of black printing ink in the forms of (GE3) 1393-Demjanjuk
[version L1] and (GE45.14) 1337-Kabirow [version L2]. [Did the OSI and
Stewart recognize the difference between these two forms? Why did they
not check the ink on version S?]
numbering GE45.14 implies that of the 22 documents examined by Stewart
at least 14 were Trawniki ID cards. Since Hindrichs officially
translated 34 of these cards on 22May2001, one wonders exactly which
Trawniki ID cards Stewart examined?]
claims several times that there is no indication that any of the 22
documents were falsely dated. (p162, line21 and p190,line2) [But there
is no date of issue or expiration on any of the Trawniki ID cards.]
(4) Stewart did not examine purple ink of Bazilevskaya. (p208, line2-3) Why not?
(5) At least
twice (p188,line10-15; p218,line5-11; p219,line5), Stewart states that
in documents from the Nürnberg Trials it was common for the Germans to
have United Kingdom and American sources, as well as inks. [Retort: It
was also very common for British/American intelligence and subversion
personnel to have British/American paper and ink.]
- [To me, it
appears that the OSI is very aware that many of the documents produced
during the Nürnberg trials were forged and are doing their utmost to
protect American and Jewish interests by insisting that the Trawniki ID
cards are valid. Why else would the American Secret Service get
involved? Is this the same Secret Service that was supposed to protect John F. Kennedy and Lee
Oswald from assassination and to prevent unwanted guests from attending