Footage Information

ABCNEWS VideoSource
Australia Kalejs - Alleged war criminal in court on hospital stretcher.
TAPE: EF01/0747 IN_TIME: 07:22:49 DURATION: 0:39 SOURCES: Channel 9 RESTRICTIONS: DATELINE: Melbourne - 23 Oct 2001 SHOTLIST: 1. Kalejs being taken from ambulance 2. Various, Kalejs being taken into court 3. Various, Kalejs being loaded into ambulance STORYLINE: Lawyers for Nazi war crime suspect Konrad Kalejs began a federal court bid on Tuesday against his extradition to Latvia where he faces genocide charges. In May, a magistrate ruled that Kalejs was eligible for surrender to Latvia to face the charges of genocide and war crimes. He is 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 denies 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 30,000 Latvian Jews. His lawyers have appealed against the May decision on technical grounds, saying the Latvian documents requesting the extradition were not properly authenticated. They have also argued that a 1924 extradition treaty with Latvia was still in force. Under the 1924 treaty, Latvia should have supplied evidence of Kalejs' alleged crimes to establish at least a prima facie case against him. Wheeled into court in Melbourne in a stretcher accompanied by ambulance officers, the 88-year old Kalejs was excused from the proceedings until a decision is handed down. According to his lawyers, Kalejs is suffering from dementia and cancer as well as being almost deaf and legally blind. Justice Susan Kenny said Kalejs should be taken "to a more comfortable and appropriate place".