Jakiw Palij was a former guard at the Trawniki concentration camp in Poland. In 1943, as part of Operation Harvest Festival, all 13,000 Jews imprisoned at the camp were massacred in a single day and their bodies incinerated in a sonderkommando. Palij moved to the US after the war and obtained US citizenship in 1957, where he lived in relatively anonymity for half a century. However, in 2003 researchers discovered his whereabouts and a US court held him responsible “assisting the persecution of Holocaust victims”, subsequently stripping his citizenship. Legal battles over deportation followed and it was only in 2017 that he was returned to Germany, where he died – unpunished – in an Ahlen care home.
Died aged 95 (2 picks)