UK news

Manslaughter charge over pensioner death

By Robyn Rosen, August 5, 2010

A man has been charged with the manslaughter of an 83-year-old strictly Orthodox woman from Stamford Hill.

Police found Evelyn Kelmenson, with her legs bound by duct tape, in the top-floor bedroom of her three-storey house on Leweston Place on January 1 2009, after her niece had raised the alarm.

A year later, police offered a £20,000 reward for information.

Kuba Dlugosz, 32, a Polish national of no fixed address, appeared at Havering Magistrates Court on Wednesday. He was remanded in custody and also charged with burglary.

He will appear again in court in November.

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MP Fabian Hamilton: hard to defend Israel

By Jessica Elgot, August 5, 2010

The Labour MP for Leeds North East, Fabian Hamilton, says it is becoming more and more difficult to defend Israel in the House of Commons.

The long-serving Jewish MP represents Alwoodley, Moortown and Roundhay, home to the majority of Leeds' 8,000 Jews.

He said: "Labour Friends of Israel is still quite strong, as are the Conservatives. But there is a stronger pro-Palestinian lobby too. Some of Israel's mistakes have really strengthened them.

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Israel boycotters pitch up in Waitrose

By Robyn Rosen, August 5, 2010

Security guards were forced to remove protesters who pitched a tent in the aisle of a Waitrose store and spent an hour urging shoppers not to buy Israeli goods.

The protest was organised by Brighton Jordan Valley Solidarity and its supporters included Simon Levin, one of the seven activists cleared last month of damaging an arms factory after successfully claiming they had acted to prevent Israeli "war crimes".

Staff called police after 10 protesters refused to move from the store in Western Road, Brighton.

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Christian convert lecturer claims discrimination

By Robyn Rosen, August 5, 2010

A lecturer at the Oxford Centre for Jewish and Hebrew Studies has told an employment tribunal that she was discriminated against after she converted from Judaism to Christianity.

Israeli Dr Tali Argov, who was a full-time lector in modern Hebrew, said at the hearing in Reading last week that she was ostracised by colleagues and then made redundant after she converted to Anglicanism in January 2008.

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Masorti joins the JLC

By Marcus Dysch, August 5, 2010

The Assembly of Masorti Synagogues has become a constituent member of the Jewish Leadership Council.

Masorti communities will be represented by the organisation's co-chair Bill Benjamin.

A former member of the JLC's commission on the future of Jewish schools, Mr Benjamin is also a trustee of JCoSS.

Vivian Wineman, JLC chairman, said: "We are delighted that Masorti has joined the JLC. This will further enhance the council's plurality and expand our organisational membership base."

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Israel ad ban appeal unsuccessful

By Robyn Rosen, August 5, 2010

An appeal against a ban on a holiday advert describing the Western Wall as part of Israel has been unsuccessful.

The Israel Government Tourist Office (IGTO) appealed after the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) upheld a complaint in April that the Kotel was actually in the Occupied Territories.

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Tycoon gets back £21m in fraud battle

By Paul Berger, August 5, 2010

A British property tycoon has won a US court battle against an Orthodox developer who swindled him out of £23 million.

Berish Berger gave Eliyahu Weinstein, of New Jersey, $36.5 million, believing the money would be invested in two lucrative real estate deals in Philadelphia.

But a court heard the deals were part of a scam targeting wealthy members of the Orthodox community. The Sunday Times Rich List recently estimated Mr Berger's net worth at £35 million.

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Manchester City Council boss offers cash for polling chaos

By Jessica Elgot, August 5, 2010

Manchester City Council boss Sir Howard Bernstein has relinquished £4,000 of pay over voting chaos in one of five Greater Manchester constituencies in which he was the returning officer during the general election.

The move is designed to placate hundreds of eligible voters who were barred from polling stations on May 6 and follows the publication of an internal review by the council.

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Shtetl show for Leeds children

By Jessica Elgot, August 5, 2010

Leeds is opening a Jewish educational centre where children can take a walk through time into a 19th century eastern European shtetl.

The Jewish Heritage Centre for Children, due to open in October, is the brainchild of Leeds Lubavitch education director Shoshana Angyalfi and her project co-ordinator Ruth Bell, who gave the JC a sneak preview of the museum.

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Masorti joins the JLC

By Marcus Dysch, August 5, 2010

The Assembly of Masorti Synagogues has become a constituent member of the Jewish Leadership Council.

Masorti communities will be represented by the organisation's co-chair Bill Benjamin.

A former member of the JLC's commission on the future of Jewish schools, Mr Benjamin is also a trustee of JCoSS.

Vivian Wineman, JLC chairman, said: "We are delighted that Masorti has joined the JLC. This will further enhance the council's plurality and expand our organisational membership base."

More..