UK news

‘Fraud’ case man’s £2.6m barmitzvah

By Leon Symons, October 10, 2008

A businessman wanted on fraud charges in America has been allowed to attend his son's barmitzvah in Israel after rabbis pledged £2m in sureties.

Zev Saltsman, who lives in Hendon, North-West London, was arrested in London a year ago after he was named as one of six men accused by US federal prosecutors in Brooklyn.

He was alleged to have made $55m (£31.5m) in fraudulent profits through private share sales. He has not admitted the allegations in the USA.

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New team starts work on schools

October 10, 2008

A new team has been selected to put into action the recommendations of the Jewish Leadership Council's Commission on Jewish Schools.

Leading communal figures and experts in a variety of areas have been assembled by Leo Noé, the JLC member in charge.

The first tasks are the Redbridge Community Change project, a full investigation into the provision for special-educational-needs children, and the implications of strictly Orthodox community schools becoming voluntary-aided.

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Museums block change in law on looted art

By Patrick Steel, October 10, 2008

The co-chair of the Commission for Looted Art in Europe has condemned a decision by the UK's national museum directors to oppose legislation allowing the return of objects stolen from Jews in the Nazi-era.
Art-restitution expert Anne Webber said: "This represents a complete volte-face by the National Museum Directors Conference (NMDC), whose leading members only a year ago publicly affirmed the need for this legislation. They must not be allowed to prevail."

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Council’s YouTube blunder

By Marcus Dysch, October 10, 2008

A council which serves more Jews than any other in the country posted a YouTube video in which a resident compared Jews with "normal British people".

Barnet Council, in North London, filmed residents saying what it was like to live in the borough. Officials then posted the resulting video on YouTube.

One unidentified woman questioned in Edgware, Middlesex, was heard to say: "I know it's mainly a Jewish area so a lot of the Jewish people have got things, but for the normal British people... there is nothing really for them."

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Charedi rape claim is denied

By Dana Gloger, October 10, 2008

A Charedi man has pleaded not guilty to raping a 12-year-old boy in a synagogue lavatory.

Moshe Reichman, 24, from Golders Green, North-West London, appeared at Snaresbrook Crown Court on Monday and will face trial in January 2009, accused of four offences.

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Warning: fraudster on loose

By Leon Symons, October 10, 2008

A warning has been issued to every minister in the United Synagogue to be on their guard in case a convicted conman turns up on their doorstep.

The warning was sent out a day after the man, 40-year-old Bradley Silver, was given a suspended prison sentence after he admitted three charges relating to forged cheques.

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Conman pretends to be Meretz UK chair

By Candice Krieger, October 10, 2008

The chairman of a British-based progressive Zionist group is the latest victim of a Nigerian email scam.
Someone claiming to be Meretz UK's Yehuda Erdman wrote an email - received by members of the organisation and at the JC - saying he was stranded in Nigeria, where he was working with HIV and Aids sufferers. He appealed - in very questionable English - for hundreds of dollars.

The email reads: "It as [sic] been a very sad and bad moment for me, the present condition that I found myself is very intoxicated for me to explain.

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Lord Levy still has security protection

By Anshel Pfeffer, October 10, 2008

Sixteen months after ending his role as the Prime Minister's envoy to the Middle East, Lord Levy continues to have security protection. He was last week seen travelling to synagogue accompanied by a bodyguard.

Cabinet ministers and senior government officials do not normally continue having official protection after they leave their positions, with the exception of the Prime Minister and, during the "Troubles", former Northern Ireland Secretaries.

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Palestinian envoy to speak at Reform shul

By Simon Rocker, October 10, 2008

The Palestinian Authority's UK envoy has been invited to address a meeting of Reform synagogues next month.

Professor Manuel Hassassian will speak at the North Western Reform Synagogue (Alyth Gardens) in London at an event jointly hosted by the synagogue, Finchley Reform Synagogue and the Progressive Zionist movement, Pro Zion.

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Jewish values will help us through crisis, says Brown

By Jenni Frazer, October 10, 2008

Gordon Brown told an 800-strong audience on Monday night that the Jewish community's ethic of "goodwill and moral purpose" and its "investment in hope" had a resonant message for getting through the financial crisis.

The Prime Minister told UJIA's annual dinner that "successful market economics need trust, which can only be built through shared values".

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