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Report: Former Nazi SS Officer Living In Minnesota

NPR | June 14, 2013 4:44 p.m.

Contributed By:

Scott Neuman

A June 3, 1944 photo provided by the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum shows SS chief Heinrich Himmler (center) as he reviews troops of the Galician SS-Volunteer Infantry Division.

A June 3, 1944 photo provided by the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum shows SS chief Heinrich Himmler (center) as he reviews troops of the Galician SS-Volunteer Infantry Division.

Associated Press, Uncredited

A 94-year-old man who allegedly was a top commander of a Nazi SS unit responsible for the massacre of civilians during World War II is reportedly living quietly in Minnesota, according to an exclusive report by The Associated Press.

The news agency says that it obtained records through the Freedom of Information Act that shows in 1949 that Michael Karkoc lied to officials about his past in order to be able to immigrate to the United States.

According to the AP, Karkoc concealed his military service during World War II as an officer and founding member of the SS-led Ukraine Self Defense Legion and later as an officer of the SS Galician Division.

“The Galician Division and a Ukrainian nationalist organization he served in were both on a secret American government blacklist of organizations whose members were forbidden from entering the United States at the time,” the AP reports.

“Though records do not show that Karkoc had a direct hand in war crimes, statements from men in his unit and other documentation confirm the Ukrainian company he commanded massacred civilians” in Ukraine and Poland, the news agency said.

Specifically, Nazi SS files show that his unit was involved in suppressing the 1944 Warsaw Uprising against German occupation, it said.

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