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April 18, 2014

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Institute accuses ex-labor camp boss of 115 deaths

Updated Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014 | 3:39 a.m.

BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — A Romanian agency has accused the former commander of a labor camp of crimes against humanity for the deaths of 115 political prisoners.

The Institute for Investigating the Crimes of Communism on Tuesday handed a file to prosecutors detailing allegations against Florian Cormos, commander of the Cernavoda labor camp.

Institute chief Andrei Muraru says there is "clear proof" that Cormos "imposed a regime of extermination."

Under Cormos' command between December 1952 to April 1953, inmates allegedly were electrocuted and horses were ridden over them.

Cormos, 87, denies wrongdoing.

He is the third former commander of a communist prison or labor camp accused of causing deaths and torturing political prisoners.

Historians say more than 500,000 political prisoners were held in the 1950s and 1960s, and more than 100,000 died.