Report: U.S. paid $20M in Social Security benefits to suspected Nazis


(JTA) — The United States paid out some $20.2 million in Social Security retirement benefits in the past half-century to suspected Nazi war criminals and other Nazi collaborators.

A report prepared by the Social Security Administration’s inspector general showed that some $5.7 million was paid to individuals who were found to have played a role in the Nazi persecution and were deported, and more than $14 million went to people who were not deported but were alleged or found to have assisted the Nazis during the Holocaust, The Associated Press  reported Sunday.

A total of 133 suspected Nazi war criminals and other alleged Nazis received the benefits, according to AP, which obtained the report that was scheduled to be released to the public next week.

The payments occurred between February 1962 and January this year, when a new law called the No Social Security for Nazis Act went into effect. At that time, the four remaining beneficiaries still alive lost their retirement benefits.

The report does not include the names of the benefit recipients.

Late last year, AP reported that Social Security benefits were paid to ex-Nazis who agreed to leave the U.S. rather than being forcibly deported.

“We must continue working to remember the tragedy of the Holocaust and hold those responsible accountable,” Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), who requested the inspector general’s investigation after the earlier AP report, said in a statement. “One way to do that is by providing as much information to the public as possible. This report hopefully provides some clarity.”

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