BERLIN (AFP) – A German court Tuesday threw out the case against an 89-year-old for-mer soldier over the Nazis’ worst atrocity on French soil, the 1944 massacre in the village of Oradour-sur-Glane.
The regional court in the western city of Cologne, citing a lack of evidence, said it would not try the unnamed pensioner who was charged in January with the murder of 25 people committed by a group, and with aiding and abetting the murder of several hundred people.
SS troops slaughtered 642 people in the tiny village in western France on June 10, 1944, in a horrific World War II crime that deeply scarred the French nation.
“The court was obliged to examine whether the available evidence would likely be suffi-cient to prove the crimes with which he had been charged in a trial,” it said.
“The court determined with today’s decision that this was not the case.”
The court said both the prosecution as well as co-plaintiffs representing victims’ families had the right to appeal the ruling within a week.