A German court announced that all appeals against the conviction of former Nazi guard Bruno Dey have been dropped after the 93-year-old was found guilty last month.
The appeals being dropped allows for prosecution of other former Nazis under a legal precedent of complicity. The court found no evidence directly tying Dey to a crime, but because he was a guard at Stutthof concentration camp, he was tried for being complicit and thus an accessory to the murders, the Associated Press reported.
Dey’s case has now paved the way for other guards to be convicted. Another Stutthof guard, age 95, was charged last month of similarly being complicit in the deaths of hundreds at the camp.
Prior to his conviction on 5,232 counts of accessory to murder, a number equal to the estimated deaths while he worked at the camp for about a year, Dey apologized to the victims of the camp but maintained that he was not responsible for the deaths.
“Today, I would like to apologize to those who went through the hell of this madness, as well as to their relatives. Something like this must never happen again,” Dey said.
“I would like to stress again that I would never have voluntarily signed up to the SS or any other unit — especially not in a concentration camp,” he continued. “If I had seen an opportunity to remove myself from service, I would have done so.”
Dey’s trial was conducted in juvenile court because he was just 17 years old when he started working at the camp. He was handed a two-year suspended sentence for his crimes.
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