They committed appalling human experiments, enjoyed torturing innocent people and were responsible for thousands of murders. None paid the price for their crimes. These are 10 evil Nazis war criminals that escaped justice.
As the Allied forces invaded Germany and it became clear that Germany had lost the Second World War, the ruler of the Third Reich, Adolf Hitler and his fiancée died in a bunker in Berlin. Other members of the Nazi party and Army fled Germany, scattering across the world. Catching these people and bringing them to trial became a priority after the war. Some of these Nazis war criminals never been arrested.
While serving as a doctor at Mauthausen, Heim injected prisoners´ hearts with petrol and removed organs without anesthesia. He is said to have used his victims´ skulls as paperweights. As authorities found no record of his atrocities, Heim practiced medicine until 1962 when he was indicted as a war criminal. He swiftly disappeared. Despite a 157.000 dollar reward from the German government and worldwide sightings, Heim was never caught. However, a 2009 investigation found that he´d fled to Egypt, converted to Islam and lived there under the name Tarek Hussein farid his dead in 1992.
Wagner was deputy commander of the Sobibor concentration camp where up to a quarter of million people were murdered. Witnesses report that he took pleasure in personally killing inmates. His biggest tally in one day was nine murders – including a father and son who had places their heads together so he could execute them both with a single bullet. With the rumored help of the Vatican, Wagner escaped to Brazil and lived in relative anonymity until his arrest in 1978. Despite extradition requests from several countries, all were rejected by Brazil. Found dead in 1980 with a knife in his chest, Wagner´s death was officially classified as suicide but rumors persist that he was killed by Nazi hunters.
A Dutch man who served in the SS, Faber escaped prison and fled to Germany in 1952. He´d been sentenced to life imprisonment for involvement in the murder of 22 people. Once in Germany he claimed citizenship using a law passed by Hitler, that hadn´t been repealed by the new German government. This law gave all foreigners who joined Nazi units German citizenship. Despite repeated requests to extradite Faber to the Netherlands, Germany refused on the grounds that Faber was now a German citizen. Attempts to have him jailed in German also failed. He died a free man, aged 90 in 2012.
Blamed for at least 4.000 deaths and for sending a further 7.500 people to concentration camps. Barbie was a brutal Gestapo leader. He once deported 44 Jewish children, some as young as three, from an orphanage to Auschwitz. Following Germany´s defeat, Barbie was recruited by the USA to help with their anti-communist activities in Europe. They even aided his escape tom Bolivia where, by some accounts, he helped to hurt down Che Guevara. Although, Barbie did eventually stand trial he served just four years in prison before dying in 1991.
Heinz Lammerding is notorious for the massacre at Oradour-sur-Glane iv France, when he ordered death of 642 of its inhabitants – including woman and children who were burned alive in a church. Sentenced in death by French courts, Heinz Lammerding never answered for his crimes as the West German constitution prevented him from being extradited. The case was dismissed again in 1964 as German investigators declared there was a lack of evidence. He died aged 66 – denied any involvement in the massacre.
Schumann spent the war trying to find a mass sterilization method to eradicate Nazi enemies. Inmates at Auschwitz had their reproductive organs exposed to huge doses of X-Ray radiation – causing severe, weeping burns. Many died agonizing deaths. In the after month of the war he carried on practicing medicine until his crimes surfaced in 1951. Evading authorities until 1966, he finally trial bur was released from prison in 1972 due to failing health – he went on to live another 11 years, spending his life in city of Frankfurt.
During the Warsaw Uprising in 1944, approximately 40.000 civilians were slaughtered in the Wola Massacre. Heinz Reinefarth was one of the German commanders responsible. Arrested following the war, Heinz Reinefarth was acquitted due to lack of evidence. There are reports that US intelligence recruited him to help understand Soviet infantry tactics and blocked attempts for him to stand trial. This might explain why Polish attempts to have him extradited also failed. Heinz Reinefarth went on to be active in politics – being elected as a mayor and member of parliament. Given a military pension by West Germany, he died in 1979.
Involved in deporting 128.000 Jews to death camps, Alois Brunner escaped punishment using forged papers. Sentenced to death by French court in 1954, he fled to Syria. Brunner is thought to have spent the remainder of his life advising the Syrian government on torture methods. He survived two letter bomb assassination attempts by the Israeli secret service, although he lost three fingers and an eye. He died aged 98 in 2010.
Thought to have been responsible for almost 100.000 deaths during WW Two, Walter helped develop mobile gas vans. Caught by Americans, Rauff escaped and evaded capture by hiding out in Italian convents before eventually setting in Chile. In 1965 Rauff was arrested and faced extradition but was free within months – under Chilean law you can´t be tried for a murder that happened than 15 years ago. He saw out his life in the country, dying aged 77.
Mengele worked at Auschwitz selecting who would go to the gas chambers – 400.000 Jews were killed during his tenure. Infamous for experiments on humans, he injected chemicals into people´s eyes to see if they´d change color, and, allegedly sewed two twins together in an attempt to create conjoined twins. Arrested by US troops in 1945, he was released and worked in Germany using a false identity before escaping to South America. He never stood trial despite West Germany seeking his extraditions and Israel dispatching Nazi hunters to find him. He died on vacation in 1979.