BERLIN A German federal prosecutor in charge of investigating Nazi crimes says he is recommending murder charges against a Minnesota man shown in a June AP report to be a former commander in a Nazi SS-led unit accused of burning villages filled with women and children.
Thomas Will, the deputy head of the special prosecutors' office that investigates Nazi crimes, said Monday he has found enough evidence to recommend that state prosecutors pursue murder charges against 94-year-old Michael Karkoc.
Will's office has no powers to file its own charges and it was not clear how long state prosecutors would need to make a decision.
He says "we have determined the requirements for murder charges are there."
Karkoc's son and family spokesman, Andriy Karkos, has denied his father's involvement in any war crimes.
The Associated Press found that 94-year-old Michael Karkoc entered the U.S. in 1949 by lying to American authorities about his role in the SS-led Ukrainian Self Defense Legion, which is accused of torching villages and killing civilians in Poland. AP's investigation could only find that he was in the area of the massacres, although no records link him directly to atrocities.
Germany has long taken the position that people involved in Nazi crimes must be prosecuted, no matter how old or infirm, as it did in the case of retired Ohio autoworker John Demjanjuk, who died at age 91 while appealing his conviction as a guard at the Sobibor death camp.