Trump Administration Deports Actual Nazi Who Worked as a Death Camp Guard

Trump Administration Deports Actual Nazi Who Worked as a Death Camp Guard

The daily Bild said that German prosecutors had opened a criminal investigation against Palij in 2015 but closed the case for lack of evidence. Palij is believed to have been the last alleged war criminal from the Nazi era living on USA soil and being investigated by the Justice Department's Office of Human Rights and Special Prosecutions, according to CNN.

A former Nazi labor camp guard who was living in Queens has been deported.

Palij, an ethnic Ukrainian born in a part of Poland that is now Ukraine, told the Justice Department he had Ukrainian citizenship.

Palij concealed his Nazi past from immigration agents when he moved to the United States in 1949, the US Justice Department said.

Owens had ordered his deportation to Ukraine, Poland or Germany, or any other country that would admit him, in 2004, on the basis of his participation in Nazi-sponsored acts of persecution and concealment of the facts. His continued presence there outraged the Jewish community, attracting frequent protests over the years that featured such chants as "your neighbor is a Nazi!"

According to the Justice Department, Palij served at Trawniki training and labour in 1943, the same year 6,000 prisoners were murdered and buried in pits.

Palij admitted to USA officials in 2001 that he was trained at the SS paramilitary camp in the town of Trawniki where units were specifically prepared to participate in the Holocaust.

On Monday, he was sent to Germany, according to the State Department. Some estimates say 10,000 may have made the USA their home after the war.

The deportation Tuesday came after weeks of diplomatic negotiations. Palij was granted citizenship in 1957, which was revoked in 2003 by a federal judge after it was discovered he lied about his history.

"Ambassador Grenell's persistence in raising awareness about the case with every senior official he met sparked action by the new German government officials", the embassy said in a statement.

U.S. deports its last known Nazi collaborator

The home of Jakiw Palij in Queens, New York City. Sorry ICE, but giving a Nazi a lift does not make you heroic, and it does not absolve you of your crimes against humanity-like the rampant sexual abuse at your detention centers, or arresting a husband driving his wife to the hospital while she is in labor, or your endless and traumatic imprisonment of children snatched from their parents.

Palij was flown on a specially chartered air ambulance from Teterboro, New Jersey, according to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and arrived in Dusseldorf, Germany, at 8 a.m. Tuesday.

Palij's lawyer, Ivars Berzins, declined to comment.

Palij landed in the western German city of Duesseldorf on Tuesday. Critics say it let many high-ranking Nazis and SS members escaped justice only for their juniors, small cogs in the Nazi death machine, to be put on trial decades later.

"Nothing has changed in terms of the evidence just because he has been transferred here", he said.

It is unclear what, if any, legal proceedings the 95-year-old Palij may face in Germany.

In an interview with DW, Deidre Berger, Berlin Director of the American Jewish Committee, said the deportation of 95-year-old Palij was essential to help young people in particular to understand that there can be no expiration date on the crimes of the Nazis.

Palij himself has denied collaborating with the Nazis. "When Palij applied for an immigration visa to the United States in 1949, the judge held, he falsely claimed that he worked on his father's farm and then in Germany during the period when he was actually in Nazi service". Palij said he never served in the military.

Trawniki was notorious because it trained thousands of civilians from the area who went on to become active as death camp guards at Sobibor, Treblinka and Belzec.

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