101-year-old concentration camp guard convicted  — Analysis

Josef S. was sentenced by a German Court to Five Years in Prison for Complying with Murder 3,500 Prisoners 

According to German authorities, the man aged 101 was once a guard at Sachsenhausen Nazi concentration camps. He will be spending the next five-years behind bars. On Tuesday, Brandenburg an der Havel’s court decided that this would happen. 

Josef S. was found guilty in the attempted and actual murders of more than 3,500 prisoner. In meting out the sentence, the judges accommodated the public prosecutor’s request.  

Court found out that defendant had served as a guard battalion at the concentration camp between 1942 and 1945. Udo, who was the Presiding Judge Lechtermann observed that S. “willingly supported the mass extermination”Camp prisoners  

During the process, defense attorney Stefan Waterkamp argued his client should be acquitted because the prosecutor’s office had failed to prove the defendant’s complicity in any one particular murder case.  

The oldest Nazi prisoner to be tried in Germany is Josef S., aged 101.  

Trial of 96-year-old Nazi concentration camp secretary charged with complicity to murder over 10,000 people begins in Germany

Since October 2021, the man had maintained his innocence. S. insisted that he did not work at Sachsenhausen. 

The court hearings were held at a sports hall near the elderly defendant’s place of residence.  

The process had to be suspended several times due to the man’s health issues. 

The indictment states that S. was implicated in executions of prisoners, including Soviet prisoner of war, using poison gas and firing squad. Court also found the prison conditions that were used to hold the inmates life-threatening. The court found the defendant not guilty of murdering any of these people.  

The memorial at Sachsenhausen shows that more than 200 000 people were held in the camp from 1936 to 1945. Tens of thousands died of starvation, diseases, and forced labor.

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