Austrian Holocaust denier Gerd Honsik dead at 76

Anti-Semitic author was convicted many times for excusing Nazi crimes and claiming mass killing of Jews was a ‘fabrication’

Austrian Gerd Honsik, center, is led to the court room at Vienna's main court on April 20, 2009. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak)
Austrian Gerd Honsik, center, is led to the court room at Vienna's main court on April 20, 2009. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak)

BERLIN — Gerd Honsik, an Austrian author who was considered a leading ideologue in Europe’s neo-Nazi movement, has died at 76.

The Austria Press Agency reported Honsik died Saturday at his home in Hungary. APA cited “multiple independent sources” in its report Monday.

Honsik was convicted of taking part in far-right attacks in Vienna in the 1960s and later joined the since-banned Austrian far-right party NDP.

Over the following decades he was repeatedly convicted of Holocaust denial and incitement by publishing anti-Semitic and racist books and pamphlets.

He published a book titled “Hitler Innocent?” in which he attempted to justify some of the Third Reich’s crimes during World War II.

He evaded most of his prison sentences over the years by fleeing Austria and living in other European countries, including Spain. He was arrested in 2007 in Malaga and extradited to Austria for a 1992 conviction, after Madrid had refused to hand him in for 15 years because Holocaust denial wasn’t illegal in that country.

During trial, Honsik claimed he merely “rejected the textbook wisdom that demonizes National Socialism” and said he denies the existence of the gas chambers only when he “didn’t verify” the facts himself.

Honsik, who sometimes used the pseudonym Endsik — alluding to the Nazi quest for final victory or “Endsieg”— was last released in 2011 having served a prison term in Spain for claiming that the Holocaust was a fabrication.

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