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A 101-year-old man has been convicted in Germany of more than 3,500 counts of accessory to murder for serving at the Nazis' Sachsenhausen concentration camp during World War II. The Neuruppin Regional Court sentenced him to five years in prison on Tuesday. The man, who was identified by local media as Josef S., had denied being an SS guard at the camp. However, the court considered it proven that he worked at the camp on the outskirts of Berlin between 1942 and 1945 as an enlisted member of the Nazi Party’s paramilitary wing. Prosecutors had based their case on documents relating to an SS guard with the man’s name, date and place of birth, as well as other documents.

AP
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FILE - This undated file photo shows a roll call, in the early morning or late evening hours, on the roll call square in front of the camp gate of the Nazi concentration camp Sachsenhausen in Oranienburg on the outskirts of Berlin, Germany. In the foreground on the tower a machine gun pointed at the prisoners. A 101-year-old man has been convicted in Germany of 3,518 counts of accessory to murder for serving at the Nazis' Sachsenhausen concentration camp during World War II. The Neuruppin Regional Court sentenced him to five years in prison on Tuesday, June 28, 2022. (AP Photo, file)

AP
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The accused Josef S. covers his face as he sits at the court room in Brandenburg, Germany, Tuesday, June 28, 2022. A 101-year-old man has been convicted of 3,518 counts of accessory to murder for serving at the Nazis' Sachsenhausen concentration camp during World War II. The Neuruppin Regional Court sentenced him to five years in prison on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Michele Tantussi)

AP
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The accused Josef S. covers his face as he sits at the court room in Brandenburg, Germany, Tuesday, June 28, 2022. A 101-year-old man has been convicted of 3,518 counts of accessory to murder for serving at the Nazis' Sachsenhausen concentration camp during World War II. The Neuruppin Regional Court sentenced him to five years in prison on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Michele Tantussi)

AP
  • Updated

The accused Josef S. covers his face as he sits at the court room in Brandenburg, Germany, Tuesday, June 28, 2022. A 101-year-old man has been convicted of 3,518 counts of accessory to murder for serving at the Nazis' Sachsenhausen concentration camp during World War II. The Neuruppin Regional Court sentenced him to five years in prison on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Michele Tantussi)

AP
  • Updated

The accused Josef S. covers his face as he sits at the court room in Brandenburg, Germany, Tuesday, June 28, 2022. A 101-year-old man has been convicted of 3,518 counts of accessory to murder for serving at the Nazis' Sachsenhausen concentration camp during World War II. The Neuruppin Regional Court sentenced him to five years in prison on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Michele Tantussi)

AP
  • Updated

The accused Josef S. covers his face as he sits at the court room in Brandenburg, Germany, Tuesday, June 28, 2022. A 101-year-old man has been convicted of 3,518 counts of accessory to murder for serving at the Nazis' Sachsenhausen concentration camp during World War II. The Neuruppin Regional Court sentenced him to five years in prison on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Michele Tantussi)

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Experts warn that extremist groups may see anti-LGBTQ rhetoric by influencers as a call to action. Sophie Bjork-James is an assistant professor at Vanderbilt University and an expert on the white nationalist movement in the U.S. She says research shows there is a clear path between normalizing anti-LGBT sentiment in Statehouses and having extremist groups take hateful actions. Thirty-one members of the neo-Nazi group Patriot Front were arrested in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, on Saturday and charged with conspiracy to riot. Police say the men planned to riot at a pride event. Lawmakers in Idaho, Florida and elsewhere have recently suggested without evidence that members of the LGBTQ community are harming children.

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A few weeks before 31 members of a white supremacist group were arrested for allegedly planning to riot at a northern Idaho LGBTQ pride event, a fundamentalist Idaho pastor told his Boise congregation that gay, lesbian and transgender people should be executed by the government. Around the same time, a lawmaker from the northernmost region of the state told an audience that LGBTQ supporters are waging a “war of perversion against children.” A toxic brew of hateful rhetoric has been percolating in Idaho and elsewhere, well ahead of the arrests of Patriot Front members at the pride event Saturday in Coeur d’Alene.

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After the arrest of more than two dozen members of a white supremacist group near a northern Idaho pride event, including one identified as its founder, LGBTQ advocates said Sunday that polarization and a fraught political climate have put their community increasingly at risk. Police say the 31 Patriot Front members were arrested with riot gear came after a tipster reported seeing people loading up into a U-Haul at a hotel parking lot in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Among those arrested was Thomas Rousseau of Grapevine, Texas, who has been identified by the Southern Poverty Law Center as the 23-year-old who founded the group.