Writing in Brazilian Notes Matches That in Mengele’s SS File
Brazilian police handwriting experts said today that they found “15 points of similarity” between notes seized from a house where a man believed to be Nazi war criminal Josef Mengele hid out and in Mengele’s SS application.
“The texts were written by the same person, but at different periods,” said Decio Mota, an investigator for the Criminal Research Institute of Minas Gerais state.
The copy of the SS document was supplied by Josef Nichthauser, a survivor of the Auschwitz extermination camp who is now living in Minas Gerais, in east-central Brazil, Mota said.
Mengele, the notorious doctor dubbed the “Angel of Death,” is blamed for the deaths of 400,000 Jews at Auschwitz.
Police are trying to determine whether a man who drowned six years ago on a Brazilian beach was Mengele, as his son Rolf said Tuesday in West Germany.
Mota said handwriting experts compared copies of handwritten notes found by federal police in Sao Paulo written by the man said to be Mengele with the Nazi document.
U.S. Sent Document
Romeu Tuma, the head of the federal police in Sao Paulo and chief investigator of the Mengele case, said the document Nichthauser provided was a copy of the original, which the U.S. government held in a classified file but lent to Brazil to aid in identifying the Nazi.
Mota said points of similarity between the SS application and the Sao Paulo notes included “the letters T, D, E, and L and the number 7.” He said the handwriting analysis took 30 hours.
He said the similarity was definite, although the Sao Paulo notes were written “with a shaky hand” and showed signs of “senility and indecision.”
Mengele Family Clear
In Frankfurt, West Germany, meanwhile, the chief West German prosecutor in charge of the case said that the Mengele family cannot be charged for obstructing justice or for any support they might have given Mengele during his 30 years as a fugitive.
Frankfurt Public Prosecutor Hans-Eberhard Klein, who has spent the last 11 years on the trail of Mengele, also said the family has given no further proof that Mengele died in 1979.
He said a statement deposited at his office Tuesday by a lawyer acting for Mengele’s second wife, Martha, his stepson Karl-Heinz, nephew Dieter and son Rolf merely repeated Rolf’s assertion that this was so and an offer to assist in the identification of the body.
“The Mengele family cannot be charged with withholding information or for any form of support they may have given to Josef Mengele,” Klein added.
And, even if it is proved conclusively that the remains in Brazil are those of Mengele, the former manager of the family firm now under investigation for allegedly helping to funnel money to him will not face charges because the five-year statute of limitations on his alleged offense would have expired, Klein said.