The son of the founder of the chasidic village of New Square was among four men convicted this week of stealing more than $11 million from federal education, housing and social service benefits programs in a decade-long scam.
A federal jury in White Plains deliberated five days before reaching the verdict on three men from the Rockland County village and one man from Brooklyn.
The former dean of a Brooklyn-based yeshiva the government charges was fictitious and stole millions in federal subsidies testified in federal court Tuesday that he helped fake documents to obtain state accreditation in order to receive grants from the state and U.S. Department of Education.
Abraham Berkowitz was testifying in the trial of four chasidic men — three from the upstate village of New Square and one from Brooklyn — charged with stealing millions of dollars from federal and state benefit programs during a decades-old conspiracy.
Rabbi Mahir Reiss, a respected Brooklyn businessman and Orthodox Jewish philanthropist credited with resolving international Jewish religious disputes, was sentenced to 27 months and fined $6.3 million for his role in an international money-laundering scheme involving a Colombian drug ring. In handing down the sentence, U.S. District Judge Jack Weinstein on Wednesday based his decision on whether the 48-year-old Reiss knew that the illegal money he was laundering involved drugs. Assistant U.S. Attorney Lee Dunst contended Reiss knew.
The Ford Foundation, one of the country’s largest private foundations, has set a course of late to influence the religious debate in America, and this week its largesse reached to the world’s largest gay and lesbian synagogue.
“I have been funding a number of projects to bring new voices into theological discussions and debate,” said Ford program director Constance Buchanan, explaining the $250,000 grant to Congregation Beth Simchat Torah in Greenwich Village, believed to be the first time Ford has funded an individual synagogue.
Jerusalem — A visitor handed Teddy Kollek a book to autograph several years ago. Kollek, sitting behind his desk in the office of The Jerusalem Foundation, where he worked as international chairman after losing a race for re-election as the city’s mayor in 1993, looked at the cover — the book, distributed by the foundation, was a collection of writings and photographs from his career.
“Where did you get this?” Kollek asked.An assistant said she had given it to the visitor.
Alan Rubin has always worn a kipa, but he says it’s bigger these days. His wife, Debi, has always dressed modestly, but she says she dresses more modestly these days.
The couple has always found time for their five children, but they say they find more time these days.
These days are the six months since Sept. 11, 2001.
The Rubins, who live in Elizabeth, N.J., say they have been on a spiritual journey since 9-11, a path that will end this summer in Jerusalem.
The Rubins are making aliyah — because of 9-11.
Liviu Librescu, a secular Jew in rural Virginia, received a hero’s welcome — and an Orthodox funeral service — in Brooklyn last week because of the kindness of strangers in Borough Park’s haredi community.
Tuesday, September 8th, 2009
I have to credit my wife with this one: on her way home yesterday, she heard a talk show host railing against all the “czars” the Obama administration has appointed, and a caller offering a creative twist.
Phyllis Blackman had been alternately attending the West Side Jewish Center and a Chabad synagogue when she suddenly sprained her ankle and found herself unable to walk more than a block. "And then like magic, they opened this synagogue around the corner from me," she said, referring to the Jewish Enrichment Center on the second floor of 176 Madison Ave. at 34th Street. "I had known the rabbi from [his previous pulpit at] the Murray Hill Synagogue. When he opened here, he called me and invited me to check it out."
Holocaust survivors dealing with the sometimes mystifying restitution process now can get help in filling out the forms.
The newly created Holocaust Compensation Assistance Project will offer the assistance on claims for the German Slave and Forced Labor fund and the Swiss bank settlement, as well as other free legal help and support to survivors and their families.