American Rabbi Suspected Of Running Baby Trafficking Network

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    JERUSALEM (JTA) – Israeli police have arrested five people, including an American rabbi who heads a yeshiva, for allegedly running an international baby trafficking ring that targeted mentally disabled mothers.

    The Nazareth Magistrate’s Court on Thursday identified the rabbi as Shmuel Puretz, 44, a businessman who divides his time between New York and Jerusalem, according to The Times of Israel. He and at least four other suspects were arrested in February, but details of the three-year investigation against them had been subject to a gag order until the court lifted parts of it on Thursday.

    All the suspects have been released pending an indictment and trial.

    Puretz, who denies the allegations, is accused of sending Israeli expectant mothers in need or suffering from a mental disability from within haredi Orthodox communities to the United States so they would give birth there. The babies would be given to childless foster parents who allegedly paid Puretz and others for the babies.

    Many details about the affair, including how much money the handlers allegedly charged, are still subject to a gag order.

    Yediot Aharanot reported in a 2017 expose about the affair that they charged a $100,000 to $150,000 “handling fee” per child.

    One alleged accomplice is Rivkah Segal, a rabbi’s wife from Migdal Haemek, a city in northern Israel. She is suspected of abusing her legal guardianship over an expectant mother with mental health problems. The mother said that Segal had her flown to New York highly pregnant, deliver a boy in a Caesarian procedure and had him taken from her.

    Segal denied the charges. But an Israeli court last week ruled she should pay that mother $144,000 in damages.

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    39 COMMENTS

    1. Fake News: The story was the mothers where looking abort the babies. so they convinced them not to abort the babies. thease people saved Jewish babies from being killed.

    2. basing this report on the Times of Israel and Ynet is basing on perverted news sources. Both the ToI and Ynet are very anti religious and will NEVER give a fair shake to a religious Jew.

    3. in sdom, if you chas vechalila tried to help someone they put you on trial. In modern day sdom it’s the same. We are talking about a mentally ill person who they were trying to help.

      • nebech, my heart bleed borcht for them, in Willowbrook in the 1970s they tried to mentaly ill people too, BH thoses days are in the past, and im sure the 200 K that he pocket was because of his rachmonis, I hope he gets what is coming to him

      • I don’t know if the allegations are true, but your defense of the alleged actions is sickening. These actions, not the prosecution of them, are modern day examples of sdom.

      • So you’re saying that within the Chareidi community such people aren’t helped? Better to steal their children? I have my criticisms over certain Chareidi issues but they look out for one another.

    4. between the lines what might be going on is as follows;
      a family has an adult child w/ some mental issues
      they help the child get married for companionship
      but raising children is not something they are capable of
      at some point they get pregnant , couples parents are worried ” vos vet zein”
      some one suggests this idea have the baby in e”y and give it to foster family
      sounds like a sad situation but the best way out
      now by yidden if you do any type of askonus a few times by default you become the go to man
      wheredoes the gelt come in we need to wait & see

    5. FAKE NEWS. He is an amazing person who has no gain from any of his chased. All he does is help make a shidduch between parents looking to adopt a baby and mothers who for whatever reason don’t want to keep their baby. (Occasionally it’s Do to mental illness). At times when the parents meet, the mother tries getting money out of the new parents, however that has nothing to do with him. I have been involved in an adoption like this and he never took or even agreed to accept any form of payment.

    6. This is an outright anti chareidi Bias article coming from the left new. The Frum world won’t make abortions on a pregnant chareidi high school girl – putting the entire family in shame. The idea of making a Shiduch with childless American healthy family in need is brilliant. Discreet. Win win for all.
      A mentally ill girl changed her mind 5 years later…. the money made is baloney. Askonim have been doing this for 30 years!

    7. Fake News: The story was the girls where gonna abort the babies so they convinced them not to abort the babies by giving them cash and finding a home for the newborns.

    8. Nebach. Not every person is ment to be married. Not every married couple are ment to have children. When the issue is forced, many complications arise. Many bipolar people can get married and maintain a healthy relationship. Many can not.
      My concern is that there is clearly not enough being done to help unsera who have mental/emotional issues. It’s still, by a large extent, swept under the carpet. I pray that all of Kllal yisroel should be healthy.

    9. Muttar or assur – you are sick for posting these kind of stories.
      The pirud halevavos and sinas chinam it incites in you readers against our brothers is something you will be held responsible for. Especially on an allegation that is coming from a state dedicated to denigrating and defaming orthodox Jews in any way possible.
      Shame on you

      • ‘Elliot’ you just defamed and denigrated the only Jewish State in 1933 years. The one who took in exiles from the Churban on the orders of HaBesht. Are you a self-hating ‘frumme Yid’ who hates his own country? You should be ashamed!

    10. Its known for years that this site is worse than trash, what a shock its a bunch of chasidish guys that are off the derech…(and to further prove look at their advertisors) in any case im not jealous of their lot in hell one day. the fact is that they quoted news from two anti jewish sites in isreal -any educated person knows that. So further research uncovered that the families of these mentally ill woman were the ones who flew them into America out of shame that noone should find out (talking about ultra orthodox !!) and they were more than thrilled to get rid of these babies and put them into loving care chareidi homes. DOing this thru the isreali court would mean they go to chiloni or perhaps non-jewish families of course….money was charged for legal fees. Simple.Lets see if VIN cares to follow up in 3 months…nah.

    11. He is not the first one to have done this. I know someone in Flatush who died that was a huge askan and arranged for probably 50 babies for childless couples. Not sure what the issue here is. The zionist reshoyim are animals. They are upset that these babies are not Israelis, and even more upset that if these moths had given birth in Israel, they would have made sure these children stay irreligious by giving them to tel aviv chayos.

      it’s a horrible story. I feel bad for him.

      Epstein didn’t kill himself, and leiby is a thief.

    12. Accusation are easy to make
      And leftest press jumps all over it
      Never check sources for reliability
      Until more facts are known
      We all having a good time possibly destroying some one

    13. @goldnmedina – A friend once pointed out to me that he knew of only two countries that beat the living daylights out of Orthodox Jews…
      Germany…
      …. and The State of Israel..

    14. with all respect to VIN news, to repost a news story which we know is at best missing 1/2 the story and most probably opposite of what actually transpired and in the process besmirching and maligning a few families in the process really lowers your reputation and standards as a non partial news reporting blog
      it is the job of your VIN editors to research and check out the news items you post instead of just reposting and quoting what other news sites are putting out depending on them for verification

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