Irish Tourist Faces Criminal Damage for Scratching his Name on Auschwitz Wall

Published October 9th, 2018 - 07:07 GMT
(Shutterstock/ File Photo)
(Shutterstock/ File Photo)

An Irish tourist has pleaded guilty to criminal damage after he used a coin to inscribe his name onto a wall at the Nazi German concentration camp Auschwitz.

The 38-year-old Irish national, whose name is not reported, is said to have scratched his name onto the wall during a visit to the site on Sunday because he had seen other people's names on it and thought it was the right thing to do.

The man was spotted by the Auschwitz Museum Guards who detained him but he was later released after pleading guilty, according to reports.

Mariusz Slomka, deputy district prosecutor for Oswiecim, a town close to the Auschwitz site, said: 'The man pleaded guilty.

He submitted an application for voluntary submission to the penalty, and then he was released.'

The 38-year-old is expected to stand trial in a district court in the town of Oswiecim, a town in the Lesser Poland province in southern Poland which was occupied by Nazi forces during World War II.

More than 1.1 million people perished at the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp during World War II.

Around 90 per cent of these were European Jews, but among them were Poles, Roma, Soviet POWs and prisoners of other nationalities.

Despite repeated appeals from the Auschwitz Museum authorities, there are often cases of property damage and even theft of exhibits by tourists, according to local media.

The destruction of a monument of special cultural importance can carry a sentence of up to 10 years imprisonment in Poland.

A similar incident took place in the summer of 2016, when two 17-year-old Portuguese teenagers damaged the wall of the main gate to the former Auschwitz-Birkenau camp when they engraved their names and surnames into the bricks.

They stood before the court who sentenced them to a year imprisonment suspended for two years.

The court also entrusted them to the superintendent's supervision and ordered to pay 1,000 zlotys (about £200).

This article has been adapted from its original source.


© Associated Newspapers Ltd.

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