- The Washington Times - Wednesday, December 28, 2005

CLEVELAND (AP) — An immigration judge yesterday ordered John Demjanjuk, a retired autoworker accused of being a Nazi concentration camp guard, deported to his native Ukraine.

Demjanjuk, 85, has been fighting for nearly 30 years to stay in this country. During the long legal battle, he was suspected for a time of being the notoriously brutal guard known as Ivan the Terrible and was nearly executed in Israel.

Chief U.S. Immigration Judge Michael Creppy ruled that there was no evidence to substantiate Demjanjuk’s claim that he would be tortured if deported to his homeland.

Demjanjuk can appeal the ruling to the Board of Immigration Appeals within 30 days.

Demjanjuk lost his U.S. citizenship after a judge ruled in 2002 that documents from World War II prove he was a Nazi guard at various death or forced-labor camps.

His attorney had argued at a hearing last month that sending Demjanjuk back to Ukraine would be like throwing him “into a shark tank.”

John Broadley, Demjanjuk’s attorney, said yesterday’s ruling is the judge’s final order in the case. It was required before a June ruling authorizing the government to deport Demjanjuk could be appealed.

Mr. Broadley said he had not read the entire ruling issued yesterday, but that Demjanjuk would appeal Judge Creppy’s earlier decision.

The United States first tried to deport Demjanjuk in 1977, accusing him of being Ivan the Terrible at the Treblinka concentration camp. Demjanjuk was extradited to Israel, convicted and sentenced to hang, but the Israeli Supreme Court found that someone else apparently was Ivan.

Demjanjuk returned to the United States, and his U.S. citizenship was restored before being lifted again.

The current case is based on evidence uncovered by the Justice Department contending he was a different guard. Demjanjuk has denied the accusations.

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