WHEREVER THEY MAY BE
© 1972, The Beate Klarsfeld Foundation
 
 
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I can report that Ludolph completely changed his opinion within a few weeks. He took charge of frustrating the Munich court's attempt to legally justify Barbie's impunity and, through him, that of the other criminals whose cases resembled his. Ludolph was obliged to reopen the investigation. I tried to guess what he was up to and what his line of thinking hereafter would be.

Barbie's case was uncommon in that he was one of the few criminals to have expatriated himself from the Federal Republic. The German courts had practically turned the matter of locating him in the country to which he had fled over to the French authorities, who were the only ones to have demanded his extradition, for the German courts would not have jurisdiction over him until the agreement of February 2, 1971, had been ratified. It was far better for France to get Barbie before the treaty was ratified, for afterward the Federal Republic, having acquired jurisdiction, would have to demand the extradition of Barbie from the country in which he had found asylum. By avoiding such hazards the German courts could also test the sincerity of the French government's desire to prosecute German war criminals. If that desire was not sincere, and if France did not want to take the initiative, then why should the Bundestag be in any hurry to ratify the treaty, and even if it did do so, then why should the German courts be severe?

Ludolph gave us two photographs, front and profile, that had been taken of Barbie in 1943, and another of a group of businessmen seated around a table, one of whom looked enough like Barbie as he might be twenty-five years later for the Munich court to assume it was he.

"The picture of the group," the prosecutor told us, "was taken in La Paz, Bolivia, in 1968. That is all I can say at this time. Since you have demonstrated how efficient you are, why don't you help me identify that man?"
    
   
 
WHEREVER THEY MAY BE
© 1972, The Beate Klarsfeld Foundation
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