[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Tuesday, 15 March, 2005, 11:29 GMT
Judge questions Chile cult head
Paul Schaefer arrives for questioning
Schaefer was described as the closed community's supreme ruler
Former Nazi and cult leader Paul Schaefer has been questioned by a judge in Chile over the disappearance of a left-wing activist in 1974.

The judge ordered that he be jailed until later this week, when a decision will be taken on whether to bring formal charges against him.

Another judge is set to question him later in the week over the alleged sexual abuse of 26 children.

Mr Schaefer, 83, was deported on Sunday from Argentina.

He entered the closed court on Monday in a wheelchair under police escort, and a crowd shouted insults at him as he was taken away from the interview room under high security.

The German citizen was questioned for three hours over the disappearance of leftist Alvaro Vallejos in 1974.

There are allegations of close links between Mr Schaefer and former leaders of the military government of Gen Augusto Pinochet.

He was taken to hospital on Friday complaining of high blood pressure, and is due to undergo medical examinations this week to ensure he is well enough for the case to go forward.

More questions

Chile's most wanted fugitive, Mr Schaefer was a corporal in the German army during World War II before running a religious commune in Chile.

Colonia Dignidad, established in 1961, was cut off from the outside world and was alleged to have been a centre for torture and child abuse.

A German resident of modern Colonia Dignidad
Colonia Dignidad was shut off from the outside world

In 1997, there was a police raid on the commune, but Mr Schaefer could not be found. It now appears he escaped across the border and set up a new life in Argentina. He was discovered last week near Buenos Aires with five of his closest followers, including two of his adopted children.

He faces charges in Chile of sexually abusing 26 minors.

He is also wanted for questioning in Germany on suspicion of the abuse and corruption of minors, and is under investigation in France.

In addition, he is wanted for questioning about the disappearance in 1985 of Boris Weisfeiler, an American-Jewish mathematics professor of Russian origin.

See pictures of Mr Shaefer being deported

Argentina expels Chile cult head
13 Mar 05 |  Americas
Indicted Chile cult leader 'ill'
12 Mar 05 |  Americas
Chilean police raid German enclave
12 Oct 00 |  Americas
Country profile: Chile
09 Dec 04 |  Country profiles
Timeline: Chile
05 Jan 05 |  Country profiles

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific