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Auschwitz Sign Theft

’Swede Was Middleman'

Published torsdag 7 januari 2010 kl 17.20
Polish police present parts of the retrieved inscription from the Auschwitz-Birkenau entrance

New media reports seem to back up indications that the theft of the infamous Auschwitz sign was organized by a Swede. Referring to other media sources, news agency AFP reports that a former Swedish neo-Nazi suspected of involvement in the theft of the "Arbeit Macht Frei" (“Work Sets You Free”) sign said Thursday he was a middleman in the robbery.

"My role was to go get the sign in Poland. I was the middleman and was supposed to take care of the sale," the man, whose name was not disclosed, was quoted as telling Swedish tabloid Expressen.

According to Expressen, the sign was to be sold for several million kronor (hundreds of  thousands of euros/dollars) which was to be used to finance bombings against the Swedish parliament and government before the next general election which is scheduled for 19 September. The final buyer of the sign would have been a wealthy British neo-Nazi sympathizer, British tabloid Sunday Mirror reported on Sunday.

Polish prosecutors said Wednesday they wanted to question three Swedish residents over the theft of the death camp sign, without revealing their names. Five Poles have already been arrested – one of them believed to have worked for the family of the former Swedish neo-Nazi, as Swedish news agency TT reports.

The sign was stolen on 18 December and found two days later in the woods near the Polish Baltic Sea port of Gdynia. The fact that it was cut into three pieces indicates that it was supposed to be shipped abroad, prosecutors believe.

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