Maxwell was 'under investigation' for war crimes
10 March 2006, LONDON - Robert Maxwell, one of post-war Britain's most powerful media tycoons, was under investigation for alleged war crimes at the time of his death in 1991, it was reported Friday.
10 March 2006
LONDON - Robert Maxwell, one of post-war Britain's most powerful media tycoons, was under investigation for alleged war crimes at the time of his death in 1991, it was reported Friday.
Detectives were studying Maxwell's admission that, while serving as a British Army captain in World War II, he shot dead a German civilian, the Independent newspaper said.
The revelation is contained in a London Metropolitan Police file released under the Freedom of Information Act, according to the paper.
Maxwell drowned in mysterious circumstances in 1991. It later emerged he had looted an estimated 400 million pounds (680 million dollars) from The Mirror Group pension fund.
The confidential papers showed that detectives were preparing a case for the Crown Prosecution Service.
The incident is said to have taken place in April 1945, when Maxwell's platoon was trying to capture a German town.
Maxwell said he shot dead the town's mayor after a tank opened fire on them.
The details of the shooting were first disclosed in 1988, when he confessed to it in a biography of him written by Joe Haines.
Maxwell was a Czech refugee who arrived in Britain in 1940.
Police began an investigation into the killing when the War Crimes Act came into effect in 1991, following a complaint from a member of the public.
The inquiry was apparently still under way when Maxwell's body was found at sea.
The police file says the case was closed the following year, because it could be "progressed no further".
At the time of his death, Maxwell was aware that he was under investigation and the latest revelation is likely to fuel speculation that he killed himself.
Subject: German news