'Bookkeeper of Auschwitz' Dies Without Ever Serving Sentence

Oskar Gröning was tried and convicted of being an accessory to 300K murders
By Josh Gardner,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 12, 2018 4:54 PM CDT
'Bookkeeper of Auschwitz' Dies Without Ever Serving Sentence
Oskar Groening, a former SS officer known as the "Bookkeeper of Auschwitz" was sentenced to four years prison   (Tobias Schwarz/pool photo via AP, file)

A Nazi serviceman dubbed the "Bookkeeper of Auschwitz" for his role as an accountant at the death camp has died without ever serving out the sentence he received upon being convicted as an accessory to 300,000 murders. Oskar Gröning was 96 when he died Friday at a hospital in Germany, the Guardian reports. As a guard in the Nazi SS, Gröning's job involved keeping track of the money and valuables that were taken from prisoners and sent back to Berlin and, at times, he was assigned to process prisoners as they entered Auschwitz. In 2015, Gröning became one of the last former members of the Nazi regime to be tried for his crimes.

Per the AP, Gröning testified that he witnessed individual atrocities, but never acknowledged participating in any crimes. However, at trial he acknowledged he was "morally complicit in the murder of millions of Jews." Gröning was found guilty and sentenced to four years in prison and court doctors determined he was fit to serve out his sentence. That never happened, however. After a series of appeals were rejected, a German court ruled in December that Gröning must start his sentence soon. As recently as this month, a "request for mercy" had been filed on Gröning's behalf, but had gone unanswered by the time his death was reported. (Read more Auschwitz stories.)

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