Justice Department Seeks Deportation of War Criminal

The U.S. Justice Department has initiated deportation proceedings in Detroit against Ferdinand Hammer, a Nazi war criminal who was stripped of his U.S. citizenship in May.

Hammer, who is now 74 and lives in Sterling Heights, Mich., was a guard at the Auschwitz and Sachsenhausen concentration camps and served as an SS guard on prisoner transports between the camps.

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

Eli Rosenbaum, director of the Justice Department’s Office of Special Investigations, said, “We intend to seek Hammer’s expeditious removal from this country.”

On May 22, U.S. District Judge Horace Gilmore stripped Hammer, a retired foundry supervisor, of his American citizenship after concluding that he misrepresented his wartime past when applying for that citizenship in 1963.

When Hammer applied for citizenship, 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.

Hammer did not appeal the decision by Gilmore, who had said, “Horrible mistreatment was meted out to inmates of these camps.”

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