CBC Digital Archives CBC butterfly logo

CBC Archives has a new look: Please go to cbc.ca/archives to access the new site.

The page you are looking at will not be updated.

‘Ratline to Canada’ imports Nazi war criminals

The Story

How many Nazi war criminals were actually recruited to Canada? For years, the Canadian government pleaded innocent, arguing that a few war criminals slipped into Canada during the postwar wave of immigration. But in this investigative report, The Fifth Estate uncovers what it deems a "ratline to Canada," in which former Nazis were recruited to provide low-grade intelligence on left-wing immigrants.Suspected war criminals like Radislav Grujicic, featured in this report, survived on the government payroll. At every turn, the RCMP protected Grujicic with smokescreens designed to distract and deny. "The Canadian government knew exactly what was happening," insists American Nazi hunter John Loftus.

Medium: Television
Program: The Fifth Estate
Broadcast Date: March 12, 1996
Guest(s): Don Fast, Sol Littman, John Loftus, Vladislav Thomavich, Ivan Whitehall
Reporter: Linden MacIntyre
Duration: 8:47

Did You know?

• As of 2004, Canada has four acts to govern its dealings with war criminals.

1)The Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Act (2000). This act allows for the prosecution of any individual in Canada for any offence stated in the Act regardless of where the offence occurred. It also rendered the following acts offences: genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and breach of responsibility by military commanders and civilian superiors.

2) The Extradition Act (2000) allows for Canada to extradite individuals to other states and surrender suspects to the International Criminal Tribunal. It also permits the use of different types of evidence and allows for the use of video and audio technology to gather testimony from witnesses in Canada or overseas.

3) The Immigration Act (revised in 2000) specifies that individuals involved in war crimes or crimes against humanity are inadmissible for entry and also limits the appeal rights in these cases.

4) The Citizenship Act (revised 2000) permits the denaturalization of individuals who secured citizenship by fraud or misrepresentation.


Fleeing Justice: War Criminals in Canada more