'Most wanted' WWII criminal charged aged 98

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'Most wanted' WWII criminal charged aged 98

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A 98-year-old man has been charged in Hungary with war crimes committed while he served as a Nazi officer nearly 70 years ago.

Laszlo Csatary was named last year as the ‘most wanted Nazi war criminal’ by the Jewish Nazi-hunting NGO, the Simon Wiesenthal Center. Csatary was found guilty in absentia in 1948 of whipping and torturing Jewish prisoners and helping deport them to Auschwitz and other concentration camps during the Holocaust. After receiving the death sentence, he spent decades in hiding. Initially he sought refugee status under an assumed name in Canada until 1997, when he was deported after it was discovered he lied in his application for citizenship. He was eventually found last year by British tabloid journalists in a residential area of Budapest, and was subsequently arrested and placed under house arrest.

A spokesperson for the Budapest Chief Prosecutor’s Office said “He is charged with the unlawful execution and torture of people, committing war crimes partly as a perpetrator, partly as an accomplice.”

He denies any guilt and is expected to go to trial within three months.