Footage Information

ABCNEWS VideoSource
Australia Kalejs - Reaction to death of suspected Nazi war criminal/File.
TAPE: EF01/0786 IN_TIME: 07:33:06 DURATION: 3:42 SOURCES: APTN/CBC/CH9/AuBC RESTRICTIONS: DATELINE: Various - 9 Nov 2001 FILE SHOTLIST: FILE - Melbourne - 23 October, 2001 Source: Unspecified Australian network 1. Various of Konrad Kalejs on hospital trolley being taken out of ambulance and into court building for extradition hearing (last public appearance) Melbourne - 9 November, 2001 AuBc 2. Set up shot Nina Bassat, President of Executive Council for Australian Jewry 3. SOUNDBITE: (English) Nina Bassat, President, Executive Council for Australian Jewry "The problem was not what the Australian legal system has done in the extradition proceedings, the problem was that the matter was not pursued when it was brought to the Australian government many years ago." 4. Cutaway 5. SOUNDBITE: (English) Nina Bassat, President, Executive Council for Australian Jewry "On a practical level, pragmatically, time is obviously going to defeat everybody and we are not just talking about the war criminals, it is also going to defeat the witnesses because the witnesses are aging at the same rate as the war criminals, so if you are talking about World War Two there are very few of us left who are of an age where our memory is still intact." (Q: "So what are you going to do about that?") "I don't know to what extent you can address that issue. I think in the interest of justice people should nonetheless be identified at the very least. Whether prosecutions are then brought has to be dealt with on a one by one basis in each individual case." FILE - Toronto, Canada - 18 August 1997 CBC AUDIO AS INCOMING 6. Various of Konrad Kalejs being informed he must leave Canada FILE - London, England - 6 January 2000 APTN 7. Konrad Kalejs walking through airport with police escort to catch flight to Australia FILE - Melbourne, Australia - 7 January, 2000 AuBC 8. Various night shots of car containing Konrad Kalejs concealed under blanket in passenger seat, having been collected from airport on arrival in Australia FILE - Riga, Latvia - 15 September 2000 APTN 9. Wide shot of Riga skyline 10. Mid shot of Latvian Procurature and people entering for conference on Nazi war criminals in Latvia, including Kalejs 11. Close up plaque on wall outside 12. Wide shot beginning of meeting 13. Mid shot prosecutors 14. General view Riga street FILE - Rumbula, Latvia - 15 September, 2000 APTN 15. Various shots of memorial stone to Jews who died in Second World War massacre in Rumbula in which Kalejs is accused of taking part FILE - Baltic states - 1941 APTN PLEASE NOTE: MATERIAL IS MUTE 16. Various black and white footage of Nazis entering Baltic towns and being greeted by locals 17. Various of a synagogue and it being blown up FILE - 1940s CH9 18. Various stills of Kalejs as a young man STORYLINE: Suspected Nazi war criminal Konrad Kalejs has died in a nursing home in the southern Australian city of Melbourne, the government announced on Friday, bringing to an end a long battle to extradite him to Latvia to stand trial for genocide. 88-year-old Kalejs, who had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease and cancer, died on Thursday afternoon. The exact cause of death was not immediately released. Had he been extradited, Kalejs would have been the first suspected Nazi collaborator tried in Latvia since the country regained independence after the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union. He was accused of being a guard at the Salaspils concentration camp near the Latvian capital, Riga, where Jews and Russian prisoners of war were executed, tortured or died of malnutrition. Kalejs denied the allegations. Jewish and human rights groups also say Kalejs was an officer in the Arajs Kommando, a Nazi-sponsored death squad responsible for the murder of some 30-thousand Latvian Jews. He last appeared in court on October 23, when he was wheeled in on a hospital trolley as his lawyers asked a judge to refuse Latvia's extradition request on technical grounds after a magistrate ordered in May this year that he be extradited. Repeated pleas by his lawyers to halt the extradition proceedings because of Kalejs' frail health were rejected at earlier hearings. Reacting to his death, the President of the Executive Council for Australian Jewry said on Friday that her government had missed a golden opportunity to seek justice for persecuted Jews by failing to extradite Kalejs. Nina Bassat said Kalejs' death demonstrated the federal government had acted too slowly in having him extradited, and was another example of Australia's poor record on handling alleged war criminals. Kalejs migrated to Australia in 1950 and took citizenship. He would have become the first Australian citizen extradited to face war crimes charges. Australian authorities said there was insufficient evidence against him to put him on trial in Australia, and Latvia only charged him under mounting international pressure. Details of Kalejs' funeral and surviving family members were not immediately available. Kalejs has a history of being hounded out of country after country for alleged war crimes. He had gone to Canada on a visitor's visa in 1994 after being deported from the United States, where he had lived for more than three decades, after being accused of being a war criminal. He was then ordered to leave Canada three years later in August 1997, accused by the Canadian government of war crimes, and headed back to Australia. He also lived in a retirement home in England for six months before Nazi hunters tracked him down and he returned once more to Australia in January 2000. Then in September 2000, prosecutors from seven countries met in the Latvian capital, Riga, to compare evidence on Nazi war crimes in Latvia, in particular the infamous killing fields of Rumbula, six miles (nine kilometres) outside Riga. Here in the space of just two days in 1941, some 25-thousand Latvian Jews were put to death in a pine forest. The site is now marked by a memorial to the victims. Kalejs and another man, 87-year-old Karlis Ozols, were the main focus of the investigation in various massacres, including Rumbula, and extradition procedures were begun against both men.