Germany: Auschwitz medic no longer fit for trial

The German justice system is allowing Hubert Zafke, a former SS medic and an accessory to the death of thousands of Jews, to escape justice due to his age.

German authorities are seeking to end the prosecution of a former SS medic who served at the Auschwitz death camp, saying lengthy delays mean that the nearly 97-year-old suspect is now no longer fit for trial.

The prosecutors’ office in Schwerin said Thursday that Hubert Zafke was examined by experts twice in recent months and found unfit.

Zafke was charged with 3,681 counts of accessory to murder in 2015 for allegedly helping the Auschwitz death camp in Poland to function.

His attorney says he did nothing criminal.

In June, three state court judges in the northeastern city of Neubrandenburg, who repeatedly delayed his trial over questions of his health, were removed after prosecutors and attorneys representing Auschwitz victims and their families complained of bias.

The trial is one of several in recent years to arise from a shift in German legal thinking. Prosecutors have successfully argued that since the Nazi death camps’ entire purpose was to murder Jews and others, helping the camp run in any manner makes one an accessory to the crime.

The charges against Zafke stem from a one-month period in 1944 and involve the deaths of Jews who arrived in 14 transports, including one that brought Anne Frank and her family to the camp. Frank died later at Bergen-Belsen.

Cornelius Nestler, who represents two brothers from Colorado who survived Auschwitz as young boys but lost both their parents, said last March that the German court has shown “that it is not interested in this going to trial at all.”

By: AP and World Israel News Staff