Lithuanian Prosecutor Writes to Jewish Community Head on Alleged Holocaust Perpetrators in Malát (Molėtai)


VILNIUS—The website of Lithuania’s official Jewish Community today published an English translation of a 2 March 2016 letter (original here) sent by Prosecutor Rimvydas Valentukevičius in reply to a letter from community chairperson Faina Kukliansky. The text of the translation published today follows. The correspondence relates to alleged perpetrators in the northeastern Lithuanian town Malát (Molėtai), where an international commemoration is planned for August 2016.

For other recent interactions with the prosecutor’s office, see our 3 March 2016 report on another request, that for release of  (or action regarding) the list of several thousand names of persons that the Genocide Center now concedes were potentially Holocaust perpetrators.

  • 10 March 2016 No. 46
  • Office of Prosecutor General, Republic of Lithuania
  • 8 March 2016 No. 17.2. -3073
    re: 29 February 2016 No. 190
  • To: Faina Kukliansky, attorney, chairwoman,
    Lithuanian Jewish Community
  • Pylimo street 4, 01117 Vilnius
  • cc:
  • Teresė Birutė Burauskaitė, general director
    Center for the Study of the Genocide and Resistance of the Residents of Lithuania
  • Didžioji street no. 17/1
    01128 Vilnius


On Assessing the Basis for the Rehabilitation of the Priest Jonas Žvinys and on the De-Rehabilitation of Bronius Žvinys

Upon examination of a request sent by the Lithuanian Jewish Community to assess the actions of the priest Jonas Žvinys and Bronius Žvinys and received at the Office of Prosecutor General, and having examined according to our competency that part of the request demanding the Prosecutor General, in light of conclusions and material supplied by the Center for the Study of the Genocide and Resistance of the Residents of Lithuania (hereafter CSGRRL), investigate whether the Supreme Court of Lithuania justly rehabilitated Jonas Žvinys, we respond to the applicant by explaining that such a demand can only be undertaken after the CSGRRL performs archival research on the general assertions (without any factual information) made in the request and provides its conclusion to the Office of Prosecutor General. The Prosecutor General has no information about the repression of, the reasons for the repression of or the restoration of civil rights (rehabilitation) of Jonas Žvinys.

We would also like to point out to both the applicant and the leadership of the CSGRRL that under the current legal regulation — article 6, section 2 of the law on the restoration of rights of people of the Republic of Lithuania who were repressed for resisting the occupation regimes, which defines which people have the right based on article 1 of the same law to appeal to the Supreme Court of Lithuania for renewing a case on the restoration of civil rights of a repressed person — an application containing factual information and legal arguments for the merits of the case may be made not just by the Prosecutor General, but also by the CSGRRL or a public organization. The latter category includes the applicant’s own organization, the Lithuanian Jewish Community.

The request by the chairwoman of the Lithuanian Jewish Community to the CSGRRL asks for an investigation of Bronius Žvinys’s direct participation in the murder of people of Jewish ethnicity during World War II. According to the information possessed by the Prosecutor General, the Supreme Court of Lithuania at the initiative of its chief justice reconsidered the case and issued a finding on September 21, 2010, annulling the certificate of restoration of rights (rehabilitation) for Bronius Žvinys, born 1914, issued by the Supreme Court of Lithuania on June 19, 1991, certificate no. 8-14603/91, as well as restoration of rights (rehabilitation) certificate no. 8-14603/92 issued by the Supreme Court of Lithuania on March 17, 1992, for the same person. These decisions by the Supreme Court of Lithuania were annulled (Bronius Žvinys, born 1914, was de-rehabilitated) after it was established that during the period of Soviet occupation this person was repressed in an extra-judicial manner for actions connected with his participation in the mass murder of approximately 1,200 unarmed civilians of Jewish ethnicity in Molėtai.

Rimvydas Valentukevičius, Prosecutor
Criminal Prosecution Department

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