Skip to main content

Nazi war crimes suspect Laszlo Csatary dies at 98

By Joseph Netto and Holly Yan, CNN
updated 10:46 AM EDT, Mon August 12, 2013
(File photo) Laszlo Csatary leaves the courthouse in Budapest, Hungary, on July 18, 2012.
(File photo) Laszlo Csatary leaves the courthouse in Budapest, Hungary, on July 18, 2012.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Csatary was accused of sending 15,000 Jews to the Auschwitz concentration camp
  • He was arrested last year after a Jewish rights group discovered him living in Hungary
  • Csatary had denied allegations against him to a British tabloid
  • Lawyer: "With the death of Csatary there are no further proceedings in this case"

(CNN) -- Laszlo Csatary, the Nazi war crimes suspect who was arrested last year, has died, his lawyer told Hungarian media. He was 98.

Csatary was accused of sending more than 15,000 Jews to the Auschwitz concentration camp in the spring of 1944.

"With the death of Csatary there are no further proceedings in this case," lawyer Gabor Horvath told Hungarian state news agency MTI. He said Csatary died Saturday.

Csatary was arrested in June 2012 after a Jewish rights organization discovered him living in Budapest. The Simon Wiesenthal Center considered him its most-wanted Nazi war criminal.

"This is a very unfortunate end to a saga that lasted far too long," Efraim Zuroff, director of the center's Israel office, said Monday. "Csatary should have been brought to justice shortly after the war. ... We gave the Hungarian prosecutors evidence two years ago, and this should have been taken care of months ago in Budapest."

Csatary served as a senior Hungarian police officer in the city of Kosice, which is now in Slovakia but was under Hungarian rule in the 1940s, the center said.

In addition to the Auschwitz deportations, Csatary was accused of participating in the deportations of 300 Jews to the Ukraine to be killed, Zuroff said.

Using the last name Csizsik, Csatary arrived in Canada in 1949, telling immigration officials he was Yugoslavian, according to The Toronto Star newspaper.

Canadian authorities later investigated allegations that he had lied to immigration authorities about his past when he arrived there. Canada revoked his citizenship in 1997 and initiated an investigation.

Csatary voluntarily left Canada amid deportation proceedings and returned to Hungary.

After receiving tips from Zuroff, Hungarian authorities launched an investigation on Csatary in September 2011, the center said.

Csatary denied allegations against him to the British tabloid The Sun.

People we've lost in 2013

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 3:15 PM EDT, Thu October 23, 2014
Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, shot while standing guard at Ottawa's National War Memorial, was known for his easygoing manner and smile.
updated 4:06 PM EDT, Wed October 22, 2014
Non-stop chatter about actress' appearance is nasty, cruel, hurtful, invasive and sexist.
updated 4:58 PM EDT, Wed October 22, 2014
Air New Zealand's new 'Hobbit' safety video stars Peter Jackson, Elijah Wood, elves and orcs.
updated 10:14 AM EDT, Thu October 23, 2014
A 15-year-old pregnant girl is rescued from slavery, only to be charged with having sex outside of marriage, shocked rights activists say -- a charge potentially punishable by death.
updated 11:33 PM EDT, Tue October 21, 2014
After sushi and ramen, beef is on the list of must-eats for many visitors to Japan.
updated 12:07 PM EDT, Mon October 20, 2014
Airports judged on comfort, conveniences, cleanliness and customer service.
updated 1:48 PM EDT, Wed October 22, 2014
Scientists use CT scans to recreate a life-size image of the ancient king.
updated 5:59 AM EDT, Wed October 22, 2014
Despite billions spent on eradicating poppy production, Afghan farmers are growing bumper crops, a U.S. government report says.
updated 9:19 AM EDT, Mon October 20, 2014
With so many new attractions on the way, the next few years are going to be a roller coaster ride.
updated 12:29 AM EDT, Thu October 16, 2014
Thomas Malthus famously predicted that rising populations would create a food crunch: Could this be true?
updated 6:33 AM EDT, Sat October 18, 2014
From "Sick Man of Europe" to the world's fourth largest economy.
updated 7:53 AM EDT, Thu October 23, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT