BONN (Jul. 4)
Oskar Baecker, a 64-year-old tailor, was sentenced to life by a Bonn court today which found him guilty of murder, complicity in murder and attempted murder of Jews during World War II. Baecker had maintained his innocence, claiming mistaken identity, although 77 witnesses including many from Israel offered testimony against him during the six-month trial.
In 1942 Baecker served with a frontier police unit attached to the Gestapo in Krosno, Poland where he shot the wife and two small daughters of a Jewish glass-worker when they resisted joining a deportation transport. Baecker also murdered a rabbi and shot a young Jewish woman for possession of a fur muff after furs were confiscated by the Nazis, the court found.
He was acquitted of charges of complicity in murdering 3000 Jews transported to the Belzec extermination camp. The court was unable to prove that Baecker, who worked as a guard on the transport, knew of his prisoners’ fate in Belzec.