A 93-year-old German man has been charged with 170,000 counts of accessory murder, based on the allegations that he served as an SS guard at the Nazi death camp Auschwitz in Poland during World War II, a German court said in a statement on Monday.
The man, whose name has not been released by the court due in accordance with privacy laws, is said to have served at the Nazi camp between January 1942 and June 1944, reports the Associated Press.
According to court papers, he was assigned to the Auschwitz I camp but also supervised new prisoners -- mostly Jews -- at Auschwitz-Birkenau, the extermination camp where the bulk of Auschwitz victims were killed.
The defendant's attorney, Johannes Salmen, stated in court that his client was at Auschwitz I, but that he never worked at Birkenau, nor was he involved in any killings.
This isn't the only such case of its kind. Another German defendant, Oskar Groening, 93, is set to go on trial in Germany in April for participating in the mass murder or 300,000 people at Auschwitz. Groening served as the "bookkeeper" at the Nazi camp, where he allegedly counted the money confiscated from prisoners and sent it on to Berlin.
Groening told a German newspaper in 2005 that he regretted his time at Auschwitz, saying that "he still heard the screams from the gas chamber decades later."
According to Sky News, the German office charged with investigating Nazi war crimes alerted state prosecutors to 30 former Auschwitz personnel in 2013, recommending that the state bring charges against them.