BBC News, May 2011
A 97-year-old Hungarian accused of massacring civilians in Serbia in 1942 has gone on trial in Hungary.
|Sandor Kepiro held a sheet stating:|
"Murderers of a 97-year-old man!"
Sandor Kepiro was listed by the Simon Wiesenthal Center as the world's most wanted Nazi war crimes suspect.
More than 1,200 Jewish, Serb and Roma civilians were murdered over three days by Hungarian forces in a notorious massacre in the city of Novi Sad.
As Mr Kepiro arrived at court he told reporters he was "completely innocent" and called the trial a "circus".
After using a walking stick on his way into the court in Budapest, he took his seat and displayed a printed sheet of paper stating: "Murderers of a 97-year-old man!"
'Shot in the street'
He is accused of "complicity in war crimes". Prosecutors said he would be charged with having ordered the rounding up and execution of 36 people.
Hundreds of families were rounded up by the Hungarians, allies of Nazi Germany, in January 1942 on the banks of the Danube River in Novi Sad and then shot.
A survivor of the killings, Lea Ljubibratic, said people were "thrown into the river under the ice. They would take people from their houses and shoot them in the street."
Sandor Kepiro was convicted of involvement in the killings in Hungary in 1944 but his conviction was quashed by the fascist government and he later fled to Argentina.
He returned to Hungary in 1996 and was tracked down by the Nazi-hunting Simon Wiesenthal Center a decade later to a flat opposite a synagogue in Budapest.
Mr Kepiro had sued the director of the Center, Efraim Zuroff, for defamation. But that case was dismissed on Tuesday. The Budapest tribunal said Mr Zuroff had the right to call him a war criminal because of the 1944 verdict.
He has admitted his presence at the Novi Sad raid, but told Hungarian television last year: "I haven't regretted anything, all I did was my duty!"