Lithuanian Indicted for Alleged WWII Role in Murder of Jews

Times staff and wire reports

Nearly two years after losing his U.S. citizenship, Kazys Gimzauskas was indicted Friday for his alleged role in the murder of Lithuanian Jews during World War II.

The indictment came just days before the start of the trial of Aleksandras Lileikis, the first person to be prosecuted for Nazi war crimes in any of the successor states of the former Soviet Union.

Gimzauskas, 89, was a deputy to Lileikis, who was chief of security police in Vilnius, the Lithuanian capital, during the Nazi occupation. Lithuania's Jewish community of about 200,000 was nearly wiped out during the war.

Like Lileikis, 90, Gimzauskas is seriously ill. Their indictments were possible only after parliament passed a law allowing people to be tried in absentia for war crimes.

Relatives said last week that Gimzauskas cannot move without assistance and that his speech is almost unintelligible.

Gimzauskas fled to Lithuania from St. Petersburg, Fla., in 1993 when U.S. officials began investigating him. The United States revoked his citizenship in June 1996. Lileikis, who had lived in Norwood, Mass., was also stripped of his citizenship in 1996.

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