As the trial of one of Germany’s most-notorious neo-nazis begins, German Police arrested a 93-year old man for concealing his past as a guard at the Auschwitz death camp.
Hans Lipschis was deported from the US city of Chicago 30 years ago, after American officials were given his wartime identification papers proving he belonged to an SS company deployed as guards in Auschwitz. The nazi-hunting organization The Simon Wiesenthal Center says he participated in the mass murder and persecution of innocent civilians, primarily Jews, at Auschwitz between October 1941 and 1945.
Lipschis resettled in the southern German town of Aalen after leaving Chicago, and has apparently always been known to the authorities.
Meanwhile, the sole surviving member of a neo-nazi gang that murdered 10 people is on trial for her alleged involvement in the crimes.
38-year old Beate Zschaepe’s defense began the trial by claiming the judge was biased and asked him to recuse himself. The trial is on hold until next week while that motion is considered. Zschaepe is accused by prosecutors of murder for alleged complicity in the killing of nine immigrants and a policewoman between 2000 and 2007. If convicted, she faces life imprisonment. Four others face lesser charges of assisting the cell.
For years, the murders remained unsolved as German police suspected the victims of being involved in the drug world.
The cases have critics and advocates for immigrants wondering why the police were able to overlook nazi criminals for so long.