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Statute of Limitations Exempts Nazi Kulle from German Trial

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A former SS guard deported from the United States last month to stand trial in West Germany is now a free man.

A trial has been ruled out for Reinhold Kulle, a former SS guard, because the statute of limitations has elapsed in his case, according to Alfred Streim, chief prosecutor of the Nazi War Crimes Prosecution Center here, the World Jewish Congress reported.

Kulle was deported on Oct. 26 for lying about his Nazi past when he was granted entry into the United States in 1957. His deportation capped a five-year legal effort by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Special Investigations (OSI).

The OSI investigation resulted in a deportation order by the United States Immigration Court in Chicago in 1984. The ruling was upheld by the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in August. The Supreme Court refused to hear Kulle’s final appeal.

The OSI investigation determined that Kulle volunteered for service in the Waffen-SS in 1940. From 1942-45 he served as a guard and leader of guards in the SS Totenkopf (Death’s Head) battalion at the Grosse-Rosen concentration camp in Silesia. He participated in various forms of atrocities including the supervision of slave laborers.

Kulle, a German citizen, has relatives in Lahr, a city in southwest Germany. His present whereabouts are unknown.

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