19 Jun 2013

Nazi war crime trial to start soon

5:59 am on 19 June 2013

Prosecutors in Hungary have charged a former Nazi with war crimes in World War II.

Laszlo Csatary, 98, is under arrest, suspected of assisting in the murder of more than 15,000 Jews.

They were deported in 1944 to Auschwitz while Csatary was serving in the Nazi police in Kosice, now in Slovakia.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center says he oversaw deportations of Jews to Auschwitz.

The indictment accuses Mr Csatary of torturing and murdering Jews - partly as a culprit, partly as an accomplice. He denies the accusations.

The BBC reports Kosice - called Kassa at the time - was the site of the first Jewish ghetto established on Hungarian territory, following the German occupation of the country in 1944.

In 1948, a Czechoslovakian court condemned Csatary to death, in absentia, for torturing Jews.

Csatary fled to Canada after the war, where he worked as an art dealer in Montreal and Toronto. He disappeared in 1997 after being stripped of his Canadian citizenship.

He was tracked down in Budapest in July 2012 and put under house arrest.

The trial is expected to start within three months.

He has also been charged in Slovakia.