Kyiv Post | 13May2011 | Associated Press
Demjanjuk released from
MUNICH (AP) -- John Demjanjuk left prison in an unmarked vehicle on
Friday [13May2011] for a nursing home after a judge ordered him
released pending an
appeal of his conviction for serving as a guard at a Nazi death camp.
Michael Stumf, director of the Stadelheim prison, said authorities had
difficulty finding a home that would take in the 91-year-old on such
Stumf refused to give any details about where Demjanjuk was headed,
other than to say it was in the greater Munich area.
"He asked us to respect his privacy," Stumf said.
Demjanjuk has been held in Stadelheim since he was deported to Germany
two years ago to stand trial on charges of 28,060 counts of accessory
to murder for serving as a guard at the Nazi's Sobibor death camp.
He was found guilty on Thursday and sentenced to five years in prison.
Defense attorney Ulrich Busch filed an appeal immediately after his
client was convicted. He said Friday that he expects his client's
appeal to last around two years.
Demjanjuk, who was born in Ukraine, is allowed to live freely during
that time on grounds that he doesn't pose a flight risk in view of his
age, his frail health and the fact he is stateless.
Busch said the Ukrainian community in Munich was involved in helping
find a place for Demjanjuk to live, but he declined to say where that
would be, citing concerns for his client's safety.
Demjanjuk was a Soviet Red Army soldier captured by the Germans in
1942. He is accused of then agreeing to serve as a guard, but Demjanjuk
has always maintained he was a victim of the Nazis.
He emigrated to the U.S. after the war, claiming to have spent much of
it in a German POW camp.
He became a U.S. citizen, but his citizenship was revoked in 1981
because the Justice Department alleged he was the notoriously brutal
Nazi death camp guard "Ivan the Terrible."
He was extradited to Israel to stand trial, convicted and sentenced to
death but freed when a court there overturned the ruling, saying the
evidence showed he was the victim of mistaken identity.
He returned to the U.S. and regained his citizenship briefly, then was
deported again after German prosecutors issued a warrant for his arrest
One avenue for Demjanjuk to pursue may be a 1985 FBI report uncovered
by the AP that challenged the authenticity of a Nazi ID card used as
evidence in the German trial.
Still, court experts and the U.S. Department of Justice's Office of
Special Investigations have since said that the card -- which the
defense maintains is a fake produced by the Soviet KGB -- is genuine,
and the Munich court ruled that it was.
This week, a federal judge in Cleveland appointed a public defender to
represent Demjanjuk and indicated the ID card could be used to reopen
his citizenship case.
David Leopold, an immigration attorney in Cleveland, said he doubted
the FBI report would help Demjanjuk because there was other evidence
In either case, Leopold said, "he's not coming back here if he's not a
The public defender, Dennis Terez, hasn't indicated how he might
proceed on the ID card issue. He didn't respond to an email seeking
Guest | Yesterday at 22:53
The guilty verdict reached in the John Demjanjuk trial came
nowhere near to meeting the legal standard of beyond a reasonable
doubt. An ID card for the Trawniki SS training camp allegedly issued to
Demjanjuk, an FBI report concluded, was "quite likely fabricated" by
the Soviet government. The suspect document was the sole item
introduced at the Munich trial linking the accused to the Sobibor
concentration camp. No surviving Sobibor inmate placed him at the camp
after 68 years, and those few scattershot, Soviet-era testimonies
introduced in court included vague statements of dubious value. The
grounds for appeal in this case are fertile indeed.
Buchanan, Guest | 2 days ago
Guest | 3 days ago at 20:40
He didn't do it. The evidence is fake. Even the US agrees the
evidence was a KGB forgery.