Csatary had denied the allegations against him, saying he was merely an intermediary between Hungarian and German officials and was not involved in war crimes. He was charged in June by Hungarian prosecutors in relation to what they said had been his role as chief of an internment camp for Jews in Kosice, a town then part of Hungary but now in Slovakia. Kosice, known at the time as Kassa, was the first camp to be established after Germany occupied Hungary in March 1944.
Prosecutors said in a statement that Csatary, a Hungarian police officer at the time, had "deliberately provided help to the unlawful executions and torture committed against Jews deported to concentration camps... from Kosice". He was accused of regularly beating prisoners with his bare hands and a dog whip.
Csatary, whose full name is Laszlo Csizsik-Csatary, was sentenced to death in his absence in Czechoslovakia in 1948 for war crimes. Slovakia was seeking his extradition from Hungary so it could formally sentence him although, with the abolition of the death penalty, it intended to imprison him.