Convicted Nazi war criminal John Demjanjuk was secretly buried in the United States on March 31, the Ukrainian News reported on Wednesday. The report quoted Rostyslav Novozhenets, deputy head of the Ukrainian Republican Party, saying he heard the news from Demjanjuk’s son, John Demjanjuk Jr., who sent him an email describing the place of burial.
Demjanjuk was born in the Ukraine and, after escaping the United States, kept in contact with the local community there.
John Demjanjuk, right, with his lawyer Ulrich Busch at an old-age home in Germany in June 2011. This was the last photo taken of the Nazi war criminal before he passed away.
Photo by: Silvia Mischi
John Demjanjuk Jr. reportedly confirmed that his father was buried, but requested the place not be divulged. According to the report, a few people attended the funeral ceremony, including family, the attorney from Germany, Ulrich Busch, and the attorneys from the U.S. who defended Demjanjuk when he was extradited and deprived American citizenship.
Demjanjuk’s son and lawyer refused to reveal any information about the burial to Haaretz. The fact he was buried in secrecy suggests the family is concerned the place will turn into a site for neo-Nazis or a source of harassment by other groups.
Demjanjuk died in March at a retirement home in South Germany, aged 91. Last year, he was convicted of assisting in the murder of 27,900 people at the Sobibor concentration camp, in Poland. He died before judges had reached a verdict on his appeal.
Earlier this week, Haaretz published the last photo of Demjanjuk, which was taken in the summer of 2011. In the photo, he looks comfortable, seated in the garden of the retirement home where he spent his last months.