Accused Nazi guard fails to block deportation from U.S.
An Ohio man's deportation to Germany to stand trial on charges of being a guard at a Nazi death camp can go ahead after a stay blocking his removal expired Tuesday at midnight.
John Demjanjuk, 89, accused in a German arrest warrant of 29,000 counts of acting as an accessory to murder at the Sobibor death camp in Nazi-occupied Poland in 1943, remained at his Cleveland home Wednesday.
He has denied the charges, saying he was in the Russian army and held as a prisoner of war by the Germans.
On Friday, a U.S. immigration judge put a temporary stop to Demjanjuk's deportation, but he revoked that decision Monday, and the stay expired Tuesday.
Sending client to Germany 'torture' lawyer says
Earlier Tuesday, John Broadley, Demjanjuk's attorney had asked the Board of Immigration Appeals in Falls Church, Va., to block the deportation, arguing that forcing his frail client to go to Germany would be akin to torture.
In a three-page statement released last week, Demjanjuk had asked for asylum in the U.S., saying he suffers from myriad health problems including severe hip pain, gout and kidney stones.
Broadley had also presented "dramatic evidence" of Demjanjuk's back pain from a government doctor who had examined him to determine his fitness to travel.
However, the Justice Department said such findings were irrelevant in a removal proceeding.
The Ukrainian-born Demjanjuk came to the U.S. as a refugee after the Second World War and became a U.S. citizen in 1958.
Stripped of U.S. citizenship twice
But his citizenship was revoked in 1981 after the Justice Department alleged he was the notorious Nazi guard known as Ivan the Terrible at the Treblinka death camp in Poland.
The case against Demjanjuk in Germany is based largely on evidence used in the United States to strip him again of citizenship — which he had earlier successfully restored — in 2002.
In 1986, he was extradited to Israel where he was found guilty of war crimes and crimes against humanity and sentenced to death.
But in 1993, Israel's Supreme Court overturned the ruling saying there was reasonable doubt that Demjanjuk was Ivan the Terrible and allowed him to return to the United States.
With files from the Associated Press