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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Ex-KGB Chief Goes on Trial

TALLINN, Estonia -- A former KGB chief in Latvia is awaiting trial on charges he sent thousands of his countrymen to their deportation and death more than 50 years ago.

Alfons Noviks, 86, is charged with "crimes against humanity" for his alleged part in deporting 14,000 Latvians to Siberia on June 14, 1941.

Investigators in the former Soviet republic say Noviks -- dubbed "The Great Slaughterer" -- also personally ordered the execution and torture of hundreds of political prisoners, after the Soviet Union annexed Latvia.

Noviks spent more than a decade in the leadership of the Soviet secret police.

He began his career as a regular KGB officer in 1940 and retired as a major general in the mid-1950s.