Algimantas Dailide

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Template:VillainAlgimantas Mykolas Dailide was born on 21 June 1944 in Lithuania. He lived in the capital, Vilnius, and was enrolled in forestry school when the Soviet Union annexed Lithuania in 1940. When he was 19, Dailide was expelled from school after voicing his opposition to Josef Stalin and the Communist party. When the Nazis took control of Lithuania in 1941, Dailide joined the Lithuanian Secret Police (the “Saugumas”), a branch of law enforcement used by the Nazis to control the local population by performing searches, investigations, and making arrests.

The Saugumas systematically arrested and turned over Jews for punishment and execution who attempted to escape confinement from the Vilnius ghetto, as well as any persons trying to help them. Those arrested by the Saugumas were often shot at execution pits at Paneriai, a wooded area outside Vilnius where some 50,000 Jews were murdered during the war. Dailide joined the Saugumas in 1941 and served with the group in a variety of roles until 1944, including investigating and monitoring Jews in the area, gathering background information on potential employees to ensure they were not communists, and carrying out field assignments.

When the Soviet Union re-annexed Lithuania, Dailide established residency in Germany to avoid Soviet repercussions for his involvement with the Nazis. In 1950 he applied to emigrate to the United States, claiming he had been a “practitioner forester” during World War II and denied that he was a member of the police force. When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1993, Saugumas records were released to the United States office of Immigration and Naturalisation. Through joint efforts with the Office of Special Investigations, the United States tracked down Saugumas members – including Dailide – and sought to revoke their citizenships.

In 2003, the United States revoked Dailide’s citizenship, cancelled his certificate of naturalisation, and ordered his deportation. On 27 March 27, 2006, Dailide was convicted by a Lithuanian court for cooperating with the Nazis during World War II, specifically for arresting two Polish nationals and twelve Jews while serving in the Saugumas.

legal procedure

In 2003, the United States revoked Dailide’s citizenship, cancelled his certificate of naturalisation, and ordered his deportation. On 27 March 2006, Dailide was convicted by a Lithuanian court for cooperating with the Nazis during World War II, specifically for arresting two Polish nationals and twelve Jews while serving in the Saugumas. The Lithuanian criminal trial was particularly noteworthy because Dailide was actually present at the trial and, at least in theory, faced the threat of real punishment if convicted. Many other defendants tried in similar proceedings were convicted in abstentia. Pursuant to his conviction, Dailide was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment for his crimes.

The judges in the Lithuanian criminal trial decided, however, that Dailide’s sentence would not be implemented because of his advanced age, and because he was no longer a threat to society. Following protests by the United States, Israel, and the Simon Weisenthal Centre, and a Jewish human rights organisation, the suspension of Dailide’s sentence was appealed. On 8 June 2006, the court decided to appoint a medical board to review Dailide’s health, but during the period of review, the panel never met and no further action was taken to implement the sentence. Dailide remains convicted but not imprisoned.