Dutch TV reporters face prison for interviewing Nazi criminal

Two Dutch journalists are to stand trial in Germany on a charge of breaching the country's privacy laws.

They secretly filmed an interview with a former Dutch Nazi and member of the SS, Heinrich Boere, while he was staying at a nursing home in the German town of Eschweiler.

Jan Ponsen and Jelle Visser, who were working for the Dutch TV current affairs programme Een Vandaag, carried out the interview in 2009.

Boere's lawyer had previously cancelled an interview appointment with the men once it became known that Boere was to stand trial in Germany for crimes committed during the second world war.

A member of an SS commando unit tasked with killing suspected resistance members or supporters, he later confessed to three murders. He was sentenced to life imprisonment in March 2010.

Boere first filed a complaint in 2010 with the Netherlands press council. It ruled in favour of the reporters, saying they had not behaved dishonourably.

If convicted at their trial, due to start on 9 February, the two reporters face a possible three-year jail sentence.


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