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Nazi War Crimes Trials: Josef Scheungraber

(August 11, 2009)

On August 11, 2009, a court in Munich sentenced former Nazi officer Josef Scheungraber to life in prison. He was convicted on 10 counts of murder and one count of attempted murder for ordering the killings of Italian civilians in June 1944 in Falzano di Cortona. Scheungraber's trial began in September after the presiding judge said the 90-year-old was fit to stand trial.

Prosecutors said that Scheungraber commanded his soldiers to shoot three Italian men and one woman, then ordered 11 more civilians herded into a barn that was then blown up, in retaliation for the killing of two German soldiers by Italian partisans. In 2006, he was convicted of the same crimes by an Italian military court and sentenced in absentia to life in prison but served no time.

Sources: New York Times (August 12, 2009)