German town reviewing award to Nazi war crimes suspect

A small town in Germany's Black Forest is reviewing its decision to award an elderly resident with an honorary medal, after learning from outraged Italian authorities he'd been convicted there of a wartime Nazi massacre.

Engelsbrand mayor Bastian Rosenau told the dpa news agency Wednesday the regional council would review the case and decide what to do with 94-year-old Wilhelm Kusterer's social service award.

He says they were unaware of the Italian verdict convicting the former SS man in absentia of participation in the 1944 Marzabotto massacre of some 770 people, saying "we understand the emotional reaction and we're sorry."

The medal was awarded a year ago, but it only recently came to light in Italy when a photo of the award ceremony was noticed online.