Hungarian war criminal Laszlo Csatary dies at 98


Hungarian war criminal Laszlo Csatary has died while awaiting trial for torturing Jews and deporting thousands of them to their deaths during World War II.

According to the French news agency AFP, Csatary died in a hospital in Budapest on Saturday of complications connected to pneumonia. He was 98.

Csatary, a former police commander of the Kassa internment camp in Slovakia, was sentenced to death in absentia for his crimes in 1948 by a Czechoslovakian court after he fled to Canada. He was deported back to Hungary in 1997 and arrested last year in Budapest, the capital, after the Sun daily newspaper in London published his picture and whereabouts.

“The fact that a well-known war criminal whose Nazi past was exposed in Canada could live undisturbed for so long in the Hungarian capital raises serious questions as to the commitment of the Hungarian authorities to hold their own Holocaust criminals accountable,” the director of the Israel office of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, Efraim Zuroff, said in a statement Monday.

Last month, the Metropolitan Tribunal of Budapest suspended Csatary’s trial three weeks after it began, citing double jeopardy because of the 1948 conviction.

Slovakia had asked that Csatary be extradited to face additional charges, but Hungary declined the request.

Wiesenthal Center’s most wanted Nazi located in Budapest by tabloid


A fugitive Nazi war criminal who helped send 15,700 Jews to their deaths was tracked down in Budapest by a British tabloid newspaper.

The Sun newspaper on July 15 reported that it had found Ladislaus Csizsik-Csatary, 97, with the help of information supplied by the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Israel. Csizsik-Csatary had been No. 1 on the center’s Most Wanted list of Nazi criminals.

He “played a key role in the deportation of over 15,000 Jews to Auschwitz in the spring of 1944 and of hundreds of Jews to Kamenetz-Podolsk in the Ukraine, where almost all were murdered, in the summer of 1941,” said Nazi hunter Efraim Zuroff, director of the Wiesenthal Center’s Israel office.

Sun reporters Brian Flynn and Ryan Parry wrote that they found him living in a two-bedroom apartment in a “smart district” of the Hungarian capital. The Sun published photographs of Csizsik-Csatary at his apartment door and walking in the street. His whereabouts, it said, had been a mystery for 15 years.