97 year old former Nazi concentration camp secretary found guilty of over 10,000 murders

A 97 year old woman has been convicted of murdering over 10,000 people while she served as a Nazi concentration camp secretary. The woman was convicted for her role in what could be the last trial for World War II crimes. According to Reuters, the district court in the northern town of Itzehoe charged Irmgard Furchner with a two-year suspended sentence for aiding and abetting the murder of 10,505 people and the attempted murder of five people.

A court statement said the prisoners were “cruelly killed by gassing, by hostile conditions in the camp, by transports to the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp and by being sent on so-called death marches.”

Around 65,000 people died of starvation and disease or in the gas chamber at a camp in Stutthof, near Gdansk in what is today’s country of Poland. The deaths included those that were prisoners of war and Jews who were victims of the Nazi extermination campaign.

The court says Furchner’s role was to fill out paperwork that was “necessary for the organisation of the camp and the execution of the cruel, systematic acts of killing.”

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State prosecutor, Maxi Wantzen, said it was important for the survivors to see the end of the trial with a guilty verdict. The elderly woman was wheeled into court wearing a blanket on her lap. Her defence lawyer did not comment on Furchner’s reaction to the ruling, but earlier in a closing statement at the trial, she said she was sorry for what happened and that she regretted that she was in Stutthof at the time.

Furchner allegedly worked at Stutthof between 1943 and 1945, but since she was a juvenile at the time, she was sentenced according to juvenile laws.

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Ann Carter

Ann Carter is an award-winning journalist from the United States with over 12 years experience in print and broadcast news. Her work has been featured in America, China and Thailand as she has worked internationally at major news stations as a writer and producer. Carter graduated from the Walter Williams Missouri School of Journalism in the USA.