updated 4/1/2009 5:52:24 PM ET 2009-04-01T21:52:24

A U.S. man with a reputed Nazi past is asking the United States to block his deportation to Germany, citing humanitarian reasons.

John Demjanjuk made the request in a document filed Wednesday with Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Demjanjuk, a Ukrainian immigrant who turns 89 on Friday, is charged in an arrest warrant in Germany with 29,000 counts of acting as an accessory to murder while working as a guard at a Nazi death camp during World War II.

In the statement dated Tuesday, Demjanjuk tells ICE he is in poor physical condition and that being sent to Germany would be inappropriate and degrading treatment.

John Demjanjuk Jr. said Wednesday that his father's worsening health prompted the decision to contact U.S. immigration officials. He has said his father suffers from chronic kidney disease and other ailments.

"He doesn't understand all the details," Demjanjuk Jr. said. "He does understand that he's been ordered deported. He understands that Germany is considering accepting him and that they're saying they will arrest him and put him on trial again, like Israel did."

Demjanjuk was sentenced to death in 1988 after being tried and convicted in Israel for war crimes. In 1993, the Israeli Supreme Court determined he was not the notorious Nazi death camp guard Ivan the Terrible at Treblinka in Poland, and he was sent home to Seven Hills in suburban Cleveland.

The charges now place him as a guard at Sobibor during the war.

The ICE regional office in Detroit, which oversees deportation cases in Ohio, had no immediate response to Demjanjuk's request, ICE spokesman Khaalid Walls said.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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