Court halts auction of ‘aureole’ sold with Auschwitz torture victim’s body

Muscled torso of alleged Auschwitz torture victim dangled at auction had not been identified, said court

An Israeli court has halted the auction of a muscle-bound tattoo kit sold with the body of an alleged torture victim from Auschwitz that had not been identified, a lawyer for the seller said on Friday.

The auction website said all Jewish cultural artefacts and anti-Jewish items would be removed from it pending the court’s decision, which is scheduled to be made on Wednesday.

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The auction comes days after four grave markers for the Israeli athletes who were buried as “Einsatzgruppen” in a mass grave at Auschwitz were stolen and sold online for $440 (£325).

The auction house did not identify the tattoo kit, but said on its website on Tuesday that “an unused quantity of the tattoo kit, consisting of a rubber band, fastener and plaster of Paris” was to be sold “for personal use”.

Leoni Weiss, the lawyer for the sellers, told Reuters he did not know if the name of the auction item had been “zoomed in” on by someone intending to sell it but that the body of the Nazi victim appeared to be more easily identifiable than the tattoo kit.

A spokesman for the Tel Aviv district court confirmed it had ordered an investigation into the auction of the body part. “We are examining whether the auction site displayed the public with sufficient accuracy,” the spokesman said.

In the case of the grave markers, police recovered the artifacts and identified them as Israeli athletes who were deported to death camps during the second world war.

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