Spain indicts alleged ex-Nazis

A Spanish judge indicted three alleged ex-Nazi death camp guards who all lived for many years in the United States, charging them with being accessories to genocide and crimes against humanity.

Judge Ismael Moreno of the National Court issued international arrest warrants Sept. 17 for Johann Leprich, Anton Tittjung and Josias Kumpf. The 18-page indictment says Kumpf apparently now lives in Austria and the other two are still in the United States. The three suspects allegedly were members of the Nazis’ Totenkopf SS guard corps and served in death camps, either Mauthausen in Nazi-occupied Austria or Sachsenhausen in Germany.

The judge acted in part under Spain’s observance of the principle of universal jurisdiction, which allows particularly heinous crimes such as genocide, torture or terrorism to be prosecuted in Spain even if they are alleged to have been committed elsewhere.

He also acted because thousands of Spaniards were among the millions who died in Nazi concentration camps. — ap