FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
THURSDAY, JANUARY 8, 2004
TDD (202) 514-1888
JUSTICE DEPARTMENT MOVES TO REVOKE U.S. CITIZENSHIP
OF FORMER NAZI GHETTO POLICEMAN WHO SHOT JEWS
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Christopher A. Wray, Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Criminal Division, announced today that the Justice Department has asked a federal court in Detroit to revoke the U.S. citizenship of a Troy, Michigan resident for his wartime actions in a unit that helped administer and liquidate a Jewish ghetto in Nazi-occupied Poland.
In a complaint filed today, the Criminal Division’s Office of Special Investigations (OSI) and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Michigan allege that John (Ivan) Kalymon, 82, who was born in what is now Ukraine, belonged to the Nazi-operated Ukrainian Auxiliary Police (UAP) during World War II , serving in its 5th Commissariat (later designated the 7th) in the city of L’viv. The 5th/7th Commissariat, along with other armed L’viv UAP units, rounded up Jews, imprisoned them in a ghetto, terrorized them, oversaw their forced labor, killed those attempting to escape, and delivered others to killing sites for mass execution. Captured wartime reports found by OSI include one in which Kalymon acknowledged shooting Jews. Assistant Attorney General Christopher A. Wray said, “John Kalymon has admitted his participation in Nazi mass murder. He must not be permitted to retain the privilege of American citizenship.”
According to the complaint, the UAP in L'viv, with Kalymon’s participation, enforced persecutory measures against those whom the Nazis deemed dangerous or undesirable because of their race, religion, national origin or political belief, primarily the city’s Jews. The UAP helped herd Jews at gunpoint into a ghetto in L’viv. The UAP routinely checked personal identification documents and arrested Jews for failing to produce special work passes or to wear an armband bearing the Star of David symbol. The complaint alleges that defendant Kalymon, as an armed, uniformed member of the 5th/7th Commissariat, was responsible for enforcing such laws on a day-to-day basis throughout his tenure in the UAP.
During 1942 and 1943, with the vital assistance of the UAP, virtually all of the more than 100,000 Jews in the L'viv area were seized and transported to killing sites, including the Belzec extermination camp, or forced labor camps. Nazi documents show that Kalymon took part in these mass roundups and deportations, during at least one of which he shot Jews.
Kalymon entered the United States in 1949 and became a U.S. citizen in 1955. The complaint asserts that his citizenship should be revoked because his wartime service to Nazi Germany rendered him ineligible for a U.S. immigration visa, and because he lied about that service when he applied for both a visa and U.S. citizenship.
“Smoking-gun evidence exposes John Kalymon’s participation in Nazi genocide. Holocaust survivors and other Americans should not have to endure his presence in the United States any longer, and the government will do everything in its power to denaturalize and remove him,” said OSI Director Eli M. Rosenbaum.
This case is a result of OSI’s ongoing efforts to investigate and take legal action against former Nazi persecutors who reside in the United States. Since 1979, 73 such individuals have been stripped of U.S. citizenship and 59 have been removed from the country.
Members of the public are reminded that the complaint contains only allegations.