A top U.S. congressman urged the Italian prime minister to take action to reverse a ruling that effectively released a Nazi killer from a life sentence. An Italian military court last week ruled that Erich Priebke, 93, who is serving a life sentence under house arrest because of his health, may leave his house arrest to work for a lawyer. “Ensuring that Mr. Priebke serves his full sentence will send the message that society has no tolerance for such atrocious crimes,” Rep. Tom Lantos (D-Calif.), the Jewish chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee, wrote Friday in a letter to Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi. Priebke’s release sparked outrage from Italian and Jewish groups. Priebke helped round up 335 men and boys, many of them Jewish, for a massacre in Rome in 1944 that was in retaliation for an attack on Germans. Priebke, who was extradited from Argentina in 1995, was an SS Captain. He confessed to carrying out two of the killings.
Lantos presses Prodi on Priebke