Auschwitz Bookkeeper Sentenced To Four Years In Jail

Oskar Groening.
Oskar Groening.

Oskar Groening.

A German court Wednesday sentenced a former Nazi SS officer known as the “Bookkeeper of Auschwitz” to four years in jail, in what was expected to be one of the last Holocaust trials. Oskar Groening, 94, sat impassively in the packed courtroom as judge Franz Kompisch said “the defendant is found guilty of accessory to murder in 300,000 legally connected cases” of Hungarian Jews sent to the gas chambers from May to July 1944. He said Groening had  willingly taken a “safe desk job” in “a machinery designed entirely for the killing” of human beings, a system that by any standard was “inhumane and all but unbearable for the human psyche.” Groening served as an accountant at Auschwitz in Nazi-occupied Poland, sorting and counting the money taken from those killed or used as slave labour, and shipping it back to his Nazi superiors in Berlin. Defence Attorney Hans Holtermann said he would review the verdict before deciding wether to appeal. A medical team will evaluate wether Groening is physically capable of withstanding incarceration and any sentence would only begin after any appeals are heard, prosecution spokeswoman Kathrin Soefker said. Some 1.1 million people, most of them European Jews, perished between 1940 and 1945 in the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp before it was liberated by Soviet forces.

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Chukwunonso Azinge is a Public health parasitologist whose variety of intrests ranges from international news reportage, writing articles on current world issues and of course football. Follow me on Twitter @azingelfc and on Facebook- Nonso 'King Kenny' Azinge.

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