Germany pursues arrest of well-known Holocaust denier set free by U.K. court

By The Associated Press
Germany will continue to pursue Gerald Fredrick Toben, a well-known Holocaust denier even after a British court ruled against his extradition and set him free, a German state prosecutor said Monday.”Toben is wanted on charges of denying the Holocaust for articles posted on his Web site,” said Mannheim prosecutor Andreas Grossmann.

Toben was arrested on October 1, on a warrant issued by Germany, at London’s Heathrow airport while traveling from the United States to Dubai. But he was released from custody on Nov. 19 after a court ruled that we would not have been able to satisfy the U.K. courts – for jurisdictional reasons – that the conduct amounted to an extradition offense, British prosecutors said in a statement.

Although Toben is Australian and his Web site is hosted there, Grossmann argued that because his Web site is accessible from Germany, he can, by law, be prosecuted for Holocaust denial in Germany.

“England will not extradite him, but we will continue to attempt to have him arrested in other countries,” Grossmann said.

Toben was previously arrested while traveling through Germany and convicted by the Mannheim court of Holocaust denial in 1999. He served seven months in prison before being released.

More recently, Toben participated in Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s 2006 conference convened to debate whether the World War II genocide of Jews took place, where he argued the Auschwitz death camp was too small for the mass murder of Jews to have been carried out there.

The 64-year-old suggested only 2,007 people could have been killed at the camp. Researchers estimate that between 1.1 million and 1.5 million people – mainly Jews – were killed at Auschwitz by the Nazis.

Toben’s attorney did not immediately return calls for comment on Monday. But a statement from his Web site said that he will “proceed with his historical work secure in the knowledge that despite the perfidy of British politicians, the London courts have rescued their country’s honor and preserved the proud heritage of Magna Carta.

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