lunes, 13 de julio de 2015

The Bookkeeper of Auschwitz is told 'you were no little poor sergeant as you like to portray yourself' by victims' lawyers as his murder trial comes to an end

  • Prosecutors savaged 94-year-old Oskar Gröning in closing stages of trial
  • Former SS guard has argued he is only morally responsible for his crimes
  • But lawyers said: 'You carry no moral guilt, you were part of mass murder'
  • Also compared Groening to those who funded the 9/11 terror attackers

Lawyers for victims of the Auschwitz death camp delivered a devastating verbal assault on former S.S. guard Oskar Groening at his trial on Wednesday.
Launching her verbal attack, prosecutor Suzan Baymak-Winterseel told Groening: 'You were no poor little sergeant, as you like to portray yourself.
'You carry no moral guilt. You were a part of the mass murder of millions in an inconceivable crime.'

Throughout his trial in Lunenberg, 94-year-old Gröning has admitted feeling moral guilt for his crimes, but has denied criminal responsibility, arguing that he didn't personally kill anyone.

On Tuesday prosecutors called for a sentence of three and-a-half years for his part in the murder of 300,000 Hungarian Jews shipped to Auschwitz in a 48-day period in 1944 when he was on duty.
On Wednesday Mrs. Baymak-Winterseel, representing some of those who survived the camp where 1.2 million people were put to death, said: 'It is not right that such a sentence is chosen for the crimes of which he stands.'

Her remarks came in the closing stages of Gröning's trial, who was known as the 'Bookkeeper of Auschwitz' for his role in cataloguing the valuables of victims before sending them to the Nazis.
Previously the trial has heard evidence from numerous co-plaintiffs - either people who survived their ordeal in the Third Reich's largest extermination camp, or those who lost loved ones in it.
Dr. Cornelius Nestler, another of the victims' lawyers, said: 'Mr. Gröning took part in events and he will be sentenced for aiding and abetting mass murder. Much too late - but not too late.'
He observed that at previous charges for those who had worked at Auschwitz it was necessary under German law to prove direct involvement in mass murder.
However, that changed three years ago with the trial of former death camp guard John Demjanjuk.
He was found guilty of particpating in the murders of over 28,000 Dutch Jews at the death camp of Sobibor in Nazi occupied Poland because his service records placed him there.
There were no living witnesses as to what he did, no-one to say whether he was a cook or a man who pushed Jews into the gas chambers to die.
However, he was found culpable because it was argued that the camp would have been unable to function without him and others like him, enough to secure a conviction for accessory to murder.  
Dr. Nestler evoked the memory of the 9/11 attacks against America - planned by terrorists in Germany - to elaborate upon the guilt of Gröning.

He detailed how one of the 9/11 supporters was jailed because he transferred money to the account of terror pilot Mohammed Atta.
Dr Nestler then compared that to Gröning's admission that he sometimes worked on 'the ramp' - the platfortm where vitimcs arrived at Auschwitz by train.
It was here that prisoners were divided by guards, either sent to die immediately in the gas chambers, or told to go and work as slave labourers instead.
Turning to the court, he asked: 'If this [transferring money to the 9/11 pilot] was aid, then is not the ramp service of the S.S. in Auschwitz also not aid?'
Dr. Nestler added: 'Mass murder did not only take placed in the gas chambers. It was present in the whole Auschwitz programme.'