2 Lev Tahor Leaders Extradited To The US From Guatemala

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Yaakov Weingarten (L.) and his brother Shmuel Weingarten (R.).

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Two Lev Tahor leaders who were arrested last year in Guatemala have been extradited to the United States to face trial.

Yaakov and Shmuel Weingarten are facing charges of suspected kidnapping and abuse of children. The kidnapping attempt was purposely carried out on Shabbos to make it more difficult for the parents to pursue them.

Yaakov Weingarten was arrested on the first day of Pesach last year.

Arrest of Yaakov Weingarten.

The brothers’ father, Yisrael Weingarten, is serving a 30-year prison sentence in the United State for serious criminal offenses. Another brother, Yoel Weingarten, was also arrested in Guatemala for kidnapping and child abuse and is facing extradition to the US.

Yaakov Weingarten in Guatemalan court. (Screenshot)

The measure follows last month’s sentencing of Lev Tahor cult leaders Nachman Helbrans and Mayer Rosner to a 12-year prison sentence for the same kidnapping and other serious offenses.

According to the US Department of Justice, Lev Tahor leaders not only engaged in kidnapping but “embraced several extreme practices, including invasive monitoring of members, frequent beatings, and forced marriages of minors to adult members. Children in Lev Tahor are often subject to physical, sexual, and emotional abuse.”

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)


17 COMMENTS

  1. Why doesn’t anyone go after the Gypsies who marry off kids as young as ten years old. They all marry under 18. But I guess jews are easy targets. As much as they are a crazy cult but to throw people in jail on inside family fights is wrong. Killers in America are walking free. Look at Yankel Rosenbaums killer back in the crown heights pogrom living freely in New Jersey. Look how many hundreds of Arab terrorists who murdered Jews are released by Israel and living freely.

  2. Rats:

    A bit of honesty would help your comment appear a bit intelligent. No one is hailing Israel for allowing terrorists to survive their court and prison ordeals. I wish they would feed the terrorists carcasses to some carnivorous animals. And I don’t really care much about Gypsies, as I have nothing whatsoever to do with them. And you don’t either, so stop making a fool of yourself pleading their cases.

    The issue here is that these goons are threats to others, they have been outed by quite a few of their victims. And the childhood marriage is a comparably smaller issue here. They are physically and sexually abusive, and push agendas of dependency on the leadership that is abusive by itself.

    As a Yid, you should be outraged in the axe they took to Torah, creating their own religion, yet branding themselves as ultra-Orthodox Jews. They are blasphemous apikorsim, and their gall to pusht heir agendas on others is worse than disgusting. I know the latter is not a crime for our courts, and their extradition is not about their faith (or lack thereof). But I wouldn’t miss a moment to bemoan their fate. I wish them the greatest brunt of the law, and hope they never emerge from the prisons to repeat or continue their evil.

  3. @Rats Rats DemocRATs :
    There is no comparison. The Gypsies are not a cult, anyone is free to leave their community, no one accuses them of child abuse, no one accuses them of kidnapping, no one accuses them of forcefully marrying young girls to older men against parents wishes, they live in Europe and obey the laws of the lands they live in, they are not constantly on the run from the authorities. Lev Tahor is a cult led by corrupt individuals who hold total control of its people, there have been numerous first hand accounts by individuals that have courageously come forward and shared their own harrowing experience in this horrible cult. When the authorities finally crack down they all escape and flee to a different country where they think they will have a free hand to continue their horrible oppression of their people. Their leaders belong in jail. They should not garner any sympathy from any decent person.

    @Kuvult: This is not pidyon shvuim at all. On the contrary anyone who can help the authorities apprehend these monsters and does not is oiver on the aveirah of LO SA’MOD AL DAM REACHA. Anyone who donates to any fund to help them is helping a rodef!

  4. I think Islam would be a more suitable religion for these people, Judaism clearly isn’t a match for them. They need a one way ticket to Mecca.

  5. You can paint every group with a negative brush. Why are Lev Tahor that much different than any chassidus. The only difference is the size. If Lev Tahor had ten thousand members no one would say a word. Gypsies here in NYC are marrying under age. No one cares.

  6. I saw on freely available video an ex-member trying to get back in, but was rejected as he didn’t follow Torah.
    Further, getting one’s own children back is not kidnaping for your information some of the less educated may be surprised to learn.
    By Torah, ‘kidnapping’ is a completely different entity.

  7. @ready now: There is no mention at all in the Torah of kidnapping, only of Gonev Nefesh Um’churo, to kidnap and sell. but only to kidnap alone is not mentioned at all in the Torah, so does that mean it’s okay for someone to kidnap a child and keep the child as his own?

  8. We do not live our lives only by what is said in the Torah. We are part of society and must conform to the accepted norms of society when they are not against Torah. When we behave in a offensive way even though it doesn’t say anywhere in the Torah that it’s not allowed it is still a chillul Hashem which in itself is a terrible aveirah. Kidnapping from a mother who has custody of the child is a terrible sin it is a huge chillul Hashem. The Lev Tahor cult is in no way comparable to any chasidus. If they had 10,000 members that would not make their leaders any less evil and currupt. They might have more power and be even more evil and more corrupt. B”H they have ensnared just a few miserable people in their horrible cult. They are monsters who belong in jail for a long long time. With Hasems help they will all get what they deserve

  9. If the mother runs away with the child first, what is that! Her own custody, is it so, are you sure!
    So he did not kidnap!
    Further, getting one’s own children back is not kidnaping for your information some of the less educated may be surprised to learn.
    By Torah, ‘kidnapping’ is a completely different entity.