Suspect in 1944 Massacre Near Rome Found in Austria

A former Nazi who may have taken part in Italy’s worst wartime massacre has been discovered in Austria, according to an Italian newspaper report.

The Rome daily La Repubblica reported Sunday that 83-year-old Wilheim Schubernig, who reportedly took part in the 1944 Ardeatine Caves massacre of 335 residents of Rome, 75 of them Jews, had been discovered in a southern Austrian village, where he has lived for 43 years.

One Italian lawmaker, Athos De Luca of the Green Party, was quoted as saying that Schubernig’s name was on a list of a dozen former Nazis wanted for involvement in the massacre.

La Repubblica quoted Shimon Samuels, the director of the Paris office of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, as saying he would press to have Schubernig, who runs a drugstore, extradited to Italy to stand trial for his involvement in the massacre.

“We want this trial,” Samuels was quoted as saying. “And this time, no military judges. We want a civilian trial, not for war crimes but for crimes against humanity.”

Meanwhile, former Nazi SS Capt. Erich Priebke said he wants to meet with a relative of one of the victims of the World War II massacre.

Priebke was convicted by a military court last year for his role in the massacre, which took place outside of Rome.

Priebke was sentenced to five years, but the sentence was greatly reduced because of time already served.

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