89-Year-Old Man Accused of Assisting in Nazi Genocide

TIME

An 89-year-old Philadelphia man was arrested by U.S. officials Tuesday and a day later charged by German authorities with 158 counts of assisting in the killing of hundreds of thousands of Jewish prisoners and others while he was a Nazi guard at Auschwitz and Buchenwald.

Johann “Hans” Breyer, a retired toolmaker from Czechoslovakia, is the oldest person ever arrested in connection with crimes committed during the Holocaust, according to the New York Times.

Officials say Breyer joined the paramilitary Waffen-SS force at age 17, and later worked at Birkenau, a section of the concentration camp at Auschwitz that housed gas chambers. Breyer admitted to the Associated Press that he worked as a guard at Auschwitz-Berkenau, but he said his duties kept him outside the facility and he had nothing to do with the killings committed inside the gates.

Breyer’s attorney, Dennis Boyle, tried to get Breyer released on bail…

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