91-year-old German charged with Nazi crimes


He fought on the eastern front in Russia until 1943 when he became ill and no longer fit for combat duty, Brendel said.

Transferred back to the Netherlands, he served first in the Sicherheitsdienst -- the Nazi internal intelligence agency, and then the Sicherheitspolizei, or Security Police, with a unit looking for resistance fighters and Jews.

While with the Waffen SS, Bruins had risen to the rank of Rottenfuehrer, equivalent to a corporal, and once back in the Netherlands he was promoted to Unterscharfuehrer, equivalent to sergeant, but Brendel said it was not clear what rank he held at the time of the crime.

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