The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: people/w/walus.frank/press/toronto-star.0483

From Sat Dec 16 12:38:05 PST 1995
Article: 63910 of soc.culture.german
From: (Orest Slepokura)
Newsgroups: soc.culture.german
Subject: "A life ruined by Nazi hunt"
Date: 16 Dec 1995 03:30:44 GMT
Organization: CADVision
Lines: 82
X-Newsreader: Yet Another NewsWatcher 2.0b30

When Simon Wiesenthal accused Chicago resident Frank Walus, a retired
factory worker, of being a brutal Gestapo officer in World War II Poland,
everyone assumed another Nazi war criminal had been nabbed.

Walus subsequently stood in a U.S. denaturalization court to hear twelve
(12) professional "eyewitnesses" identify him as "the Beast of Kielce," a
notorious mass-murderer who, among other savage acts, allegedly stomped a
young, pregnant Jewess to death. The ensuing court battle cost Walus
$60,000, with his name and even possibly his life at stake. As it
happened, Walus lost the first round and was stripped of his U.S.
citizenship and ordered deported.

There was just one problem. Simon Wiesenthal, the twelve Holocaust
survivors, Israeli Police, the U.S. Justice Department and the news media
were dead wrong.

"Simon Wiesenthal fabricated the whole story," Walus said bitterly."Nine
of the twelve witnesses who said they had been born in Poland and lived
there, never did."

There were numerous glaring discrepancies in Wiesenthal's case against
Walus. For one, Walus would have been only 17-years-old when he was "a
Gestapo officer."  He had been described as being 6 feet tall; when he was
only 5 feet and 4 inches tall. Walus, moreover, was Polish; hence, the
Nazis would never have allowed him to join the Gestapo.

The U.S. Justice Department dropped its suit and paid Walus $34,000 in
legal costs. Wiesenthal, however, paid Walus nothing, and even sued Walus
and the Cleveland Plain Dealer for having had the temerity to complain
about the kind of shotgun tactics Wiesenthal had employed. Wiesenthal's
suit alleged that the comments they made about him had caused Wiesenthal
to fall into "discredit with those persons with whom he has had contact
and has been held in public contempt, hatred and ridicule." An exact
description, of course, of what the ludicrous charges Wiesenthal levelled
against him had done to Frank Walus.

Reproduced below is an April 13, 1983, article by Dick Chapman of The
Toronto Star, relative to the Frank Walus affair:

                            A life ruined by Nazi hunt

As the RCMP steps up its hunt for alleged Nazi war criminals hiding in
Canada, a sombre warning comes from a retired Chicago factory worker.

Frank Walus is the warning.

He personifies a valuable lesson to mark today's start of a Holocaust
Remembrance Week, a worldwide commemoration for nearly seven million
victims murdered by Nazi Germany's Third Reich under Adolph Hitler during
World War II. 

Vienna-based Simon Wiesenthal,famed Nazi hunter, had fingered Walus, 61,
in 1974 as a former Gestapo collaborator.

By the time the allegation reached Israeli police, Walus had been
"promoted" to Gestapo member.

Walus later stood in a U.S. denaturalization court to hear 12
"eyewitnesses" identify him as a notorious mass-murderer who allegedly
stomped to death a young pregnant Jew.

Walus had to find $60,000 for his defence and to bring witnesses from
Poland. But he lost the case, was stripped of his U.S. citizenship  and
ordered deported.

There was just one horrendous flaw.

Wiesenthal, Israeli police, the U.S. justice system and the media had the
wrong man.

U.S. prosecutors later agreed Walus had never been at the Nazis'
concentration camp at Kielce, Poland where "eyewitnesses" 40 years later
had placed him.

"Nine of the 12 witnesses who said they had been born in Poland and lived
there, never  did," Walus said in a recent interview.

The U.S. justice department dropped the case, apologized and paid Walus
$34,000 in legal costs. But Walus figures he's spent $120,000 trying to
clear his name.

Home ·  Site Map ·  What's New? ·  Search Nizkor

© The Nizkor Project, 1991-2012

This site is intended for educational purposes to teach about the Holocaust and to combat hatred. Any statements or excerpts found on this site are for educational purposes only.

As part of these educational purposes, Nizkor may include on this website materials, such as excerpts from the writings of racists and antisemites. Far from approving these writings, Nizkor condemns them and provides them so that its readers can learn the nature and extent of hate and antisemitic discourse. Nizkor urges the readers of these pages to condemn racist and hate speech in all of its forms and manifestations.