Detroit-area Nazi Loses Citizenship

A Detroit-area man was stripped of his U.S. citizenship this week because of his service as an armed SS guard at the Auschwitz and Sachsenhausen concentration camps during World War II.

The ruling by U.S. District Judge Horace W.Gilmore on Wednesday clears the way for the U.S. government to begin the process to deport Ferdinand Hammer, 74.

The government charged in December 1994 that Hammer, a retired foundry supervisor, served in the SS Death’s Head Battalion as an armed guard at the camps and on prisoner transports between camps.

Hammer was born in Croatia and came to the United States in 1955.

When he applied for citizenship in 1963, he signed an affidavit specifically stating that he had not served as a camp guard and that he had never sent anyone to a concentration camp.

The court found that Hammer willfully concealed his wartime activities to gain entrance into the United States. Evidence included prison transfer records, found in Russian and German archives, with Hammer’s name.

The deportation hearing could take several months. Hammer is expected to appeal the denaturalization ruling.

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