The Independent newspaper pays for ‘Nazi’ libel

The Independent newspaper has had to pay substantial libel damages after mistakenly suggesting that a respected actor was in fact a Nazi war criminal.

In 2010, Ljubomir Jurkovic’s picture appeared in a front page lead story about the death of one of the most wanted surviving wartime Nazis.

In fact, the photo came from a critically acclaimed Croatian movie, in which Mr Jurkovic, 52, played the role of an officer in the Ustasa, the country’s fascist movement.

Mr Jurkovic’s barrister, Christina Michalos, said the newspaper had wrongly identified him as Samuel Kunz, a Nazi guard at the Belzec extermination camp in Poland.

At the time of his death aged 89 in Germany in 2010, Kunz was number three on the Simon Wiesenthal Centre’s list of most wanted Nazi war criminals.

Ms Michalos said: “Mr Jurkovic is not and has never been a Nazi war criminal and had no connection of any kind with Samuel Kunz.”

Last updated: 4:45pm, March 28 2013