Two Nazi Officers Sentenced for Killing Thousands of Lodz Jews
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Two Nazi Officers Sentenced for Killing Thousands of Lodz Jews

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Guenther Fuchs, 52, an SS captain under the Nazi regime, was sentenced here yesterday to life imprisonment on conviction on nine counts of murder, ten counts of attempted murder and 15,000 counts of aiding and abetting murder in the Lodz Ghetto during World War II.

His co-defendant, Dr. Otto Bradfisch, 60, who headed the Gestapo in Lodz, was sentenced to 13 years at hard labor for complicity in the murder of 22,000 Jews. Bradfisch was brought to Hanover for trial from prison where he was serving a sentence of ten years imposed on him two years ago by a Munich court in connection with another series of war crimes. He will serve the Hanover sentence concurrently with the prior one.

Fuchs had been an official of the Lower Saxony Ministry for Refugees until 1960. Bradfisch had been an insurance agent until his arrest. The prosecution had demanded 15 years for Bradfisch.

The two former Nazis had been charged with having arranged for the deportation of Jews from the Lodz Ghetto to the Kulmhof murder camp near Danzig. During the two-month trial, Bradfisch repeatedly insisted he had no knowledge of the mass executions at the Kulmhof camp. Dr. Dietrich Goetz, the prosecutor, riddled Bradfisch’s testimony.

Dr. Goetz cited an urgent message Bradfisch had sent asking for a mill with which to grind up the remains of the Kulmhof victims. The prosecutor said “if you didn’t know what was happening in the camp and didn’t know why you ordered the mill, you really were the wrong man for the job.”

Charges against Fuchs were filed when a group of Israelis touring West Germany spotted him on a street in Hanover. They reported his presence in Hanover to officials in Tel Aviv who in turn notified the West Central Agency for the Investigation of Nazi Crimes. Attorneys for the two Nazis indicated they would appeal the verdicts.

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