FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 2, 1997

CRM (202) 616-2777 TDD (202) 514-1888

JUSTICE DEPARTMENT MOVES TO REVOKE U.S. CITIZENSHIP OF FORMER NAZI CONCENTRATION CAMP GUARD WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Department of Justice today asked a federal court in Missouri to revoke the United States citizenship of a St. Peters, Missouri, man who it charged participated in the persecution of Poles, Jews and other civilians while serving at a Nazi concentration camp guard during World War II. A denaturalization complaint filed today in U.S. District Court in St. Louis, Missouri, by the Office of Special Investigations (OSI) of the Justice Department's Criminal Division and the U.S. Attorney's Office in St. Louis alleges that the defendant, Michael Negele, 77, entered the German Waffen-SS in November 1943. "The defendant concealed his Nazi concentration camp guard service from U.S. immigration officials when he immigrated to the United States from Germany, in 1950," OSI Director Eli M. Rosenbaum stated. "Negele never would have received a U.S. visa had he disclosed the truth," he added. The complaint alleges that upon joining the Waffen-SS in November 1943, Negele became a member of the SS Death's Head Guard Battalion (SS-Totenkopf-Wachbataillon), also known as the SS Death's Head Battalion (SS-Totenkopf-Sturmbann), at the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp near Berlin, Germany, where he served as an armed guard of prisoners until June 1944. Members of various European national groups and religious denominations, as well as political opponents of the Nazis, were imprisoned and murdered at Sachsenhausen during this period because of their religion, national origin, race, or political opinion. Sachsenhausen was also the site of a variety of gruesome medical experiments that took the lives of many prisoners. Tens of thousands of prisoners were killed by shooting, hanging, gassing, beatings, and other means while the Sachsenhausen concentration camp was in operation. SS personnel records discovered by OSI state that in June 1944, Negele was ordered transferred to the Death's Head Battalion at the Plaszow Concentration Camp in German-occupied Cracow, Poland. After the war, the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, Germany, ruled that the SS, including the Waffen-SS, was a criminal organization involved in "the persecution and extermination of the Jews, brutalities and killings in

concentration camps, excesses in the administration of occupied territories, the administration of the slave labor program and the mistreatment and murder of prisoners of war." The complaint also alleges that Negele misrepresented his wartime activities when he applied for a visa to enter the United States in 1950. OSI Director Rosenbaum said that the initiation of proceedings to denaturalize Negele is a result of OSI's ongoing efforts to identify and take legal action against former participants in Nazi persecution residing in this country. To date, 60 Nazi persecutors have been stripped of U.S. citizenship and 48 have been removed from the United States since OSI began operations in 1979. There are some 300 persons currently under investigation by OSI, according to Rosenbaum. ### 97-360