Parents of Auschwitz schoolboy thief say he is ‘mortified’ at offence caused

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The parents of the private schoolboys who stole various items from the site of the Auchwitz death camp have said they are “mortified” by the incident.

The two 17-year-olds, Marcus Dell and Ben Thompson, stole items including a comb, buttons and spoons from the site of the notorious Nazi death camp – items that were confiscated from prisoners by Nazi guards.

They were fined around £170 each and spent a night in custody in Krakow. From private Perse School in Cambridge, they had been on a school trip, and a school spokesperson said: “The boys, neither of whom is yet 18, picked up the fragments in the Canada section of the camp.

“They cooperated fully with the authorities and admitted taking the items. They are deeply sorry for the offence they have caused.”

Now the parents have released a statement to the Daily Mail, which reads: “When you’re young you sometimes do things without thinking them through.

“We are very much aware of the seriousness of the situation and know that it is not a trivial matter. He knows that what he did was stupid and disrespectful and is very sorry for any offence that he has caused the Polish community.

“It is quite possible that he has been affected by the enormity of what he has seen and experienced and this may have clouded his judgment. [He] is mortified that he has offended people but really is not a malicious or disrespectful boy.”