Cops Raid Homes of 6 Ex-SS Soldiers

Germany probing 1944 massacre in occupied France
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 6, 2011 11:33 PM CST
Updated Dec 7, 2011 1:27 AM CST
The town of Oradour-sur-Glane, near Limoges, France, was never rebuilt. The burnt-out ruins have been left standing as a memorial.   (AP Photo)

(Newser) – German police have raided the homes of six former SS soldiers suspected of having taken part in the worst massacre of civilians in Nazi-occupied France. A German war crimes prosecutor says the John Demjanjuk trial inspired him to reopen the investigation into the massacre of 642 men, women, and children in the village of Oradour-sur-Glane four days after the D-Day landings in 1944, Der Spiegel reports.

German troops herded the village's women and children into a barn which was then set ablaze. The town's men were shot in barns and garages, but a handful managed to escape. The six men being investigated, all of whom were low-ranking soldiers aged 18 or 19 at the time, were part of the unit involved. Prosecutors say two of them deny taking part in the massacre, and the other four claim to be too sick to answer questions. Health officials will examine the men to determine whether they are fit for interrogation.

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