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Nazi SS Soldier Lived Undetected in London for 66 Years

Alex Constantine - June 19, 2014

Nazi SS soldier who helped murder thousands of Jews during the war lived undetected in London council house for 66 years and worked as a printer

  • Ukrainian-born Serhij Woronyj served with SS brigade in Second World War
  • Brigade troops were involved in atrocities against Jews and Polish civilians
  • He was captured by British in 1945 and was transferred to the UK in 1947
  • For 66 years he worked as a printer, living in a council house in Archway
  • Died aged 89 last year, and was tracked down by researcher Dr Ankier


The Daily Mail,  19 June 2014

A former SS soldier in a unit accused of massacring Poles and Jews during the Second World War lived in a London council flat for 66 years after the war.

Serhij Woronyj, 89, worked as a printer and lived Bovingdon Close, Archway, until his death from a heart attack in March last year.

During the war he served with the 31st Punitive Brigade, also known as the Ukrainian Self Defence Legion, which later became part of the 14th SS-Volunteer Division 'Galician'.

article 2662295 1EE8E57400000578 182 634x690 - Nazi SS Soldier Lived Undetected in London for 66 YearsSerhij Woronyj, 89, a former Nazi soldier in an SS brigade involved in the massacre of thousands of Jews and Poles during the Second World War, lived at this council house in Archway for 66 years

The SS division were involved in putting down the Warsaw Uprising in which more than 200,000 civilians and rebel fighters were massacred.

Soldiers from the division were also involved in the destruction of Huta Pieniacka, a village in Poland which also served as a shelter for Jews, in which 1,000 people were killed.

Troops also destroyed the village of Chlaniow in revenge for the shooting of an SS officer.

According to witnesses soldiers went door to door, throwing grenades into buildings, setting houses on fire and gunning down civilians as they fled.

One of Woronyj’s neighbours, who did not want to be named, said he was 'a big man who kept himself to himself'.

Woronyj was captured by British forces in 1945  after the unit surrendered itself to the British at the end of the war, calling themselves the First Division of the Ukrainian National Army.

They presented themselves as nationalists dedicated to the anti-Soviet cause and were accepted to settle in Britain with minimal checks for war crimes.

Woronyk was eventually tracked down in Archway by private researcher Dr Stephen Ankier, who spoke to Mail Online about the unit's history.

Based in Edgware, west London, Dr Ankier said: 'The battalion that Woronyj belonged to was originally formed late in 1943 to help the Germans fight Soviet and Polish partisans.

article 2662295 197BF44C00000578 675 634x414 - Nazi SS Soldier Lived Undetected in London for 66 Years
 Woronyj was part of the 14th SS-Volunteer Division 'Galician', who helped put down the Warsaw uprising in which hundreds of thousands of civilians were killed (pictured, Himmler inspects the division in 1944)

'However, it was not long before this SS-led unit was involved in committing executions and atrocities against Jews and Poles.'

He added: 'During 1944 the battalion attacked and destroyed several Polish villages and killed many unarmed villagers, including women and children, at Edvardpole, Karczunek, Smoligow and Amerika.

'A section of the battalion was deployed to help suppress the 1944 Warsaw Uprising against the Nazis.'

Dr Ankier traced Woronyj after making dozens of trips to scour archives in Germany and Poland as well as travelling all over the UK.

He made international headlines last year after he discovered one of the unit’s commanders, Michael Karkoc, living in Minnesota in the USA.

German authorities are now considering if there is enough hard evidence to prosecute Karkoc and have him extradited from the USA.

Woronyj’s council home is now occupied by a cousin who refused to comment on his relative's past.

Dr Ankier added: 'Appalling atrocities on a massive scale were committed by the Nazis and their collaborators during the Second World War.

'I believe that it is essential to find and document the truth about these terrible crimes as a way to pay homage to the victims’ memories and to inform new generations.'