INCREDIBLE STORY: Israel’s Chief Rabbinate’s Detective Locate Recalcitrant Husband/Gangster IN MOSCOW To Secure A ‘Get’


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In a dramatic and cross-country detective operation, the shluchim of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel’s Beis Din managed to release an agunah and persuade the recalcitrant husband, who is a fugitive from the law, to give his wife a ‘get’.

An Israeli criminal, a member of a dangerous crime gang that was entangled in violent armed robbery which left a guard severely wounded and disabled for life, is the husband who in this case, refused to give his wife a bill of divorce.

The husband was arrested and sentenced to a lengthy prison term, spending five years behind bars. Upon his release from prison, he was required to compensate the disabled security guard for millions of shekels. In addition, the mafia was after him for various debts. As a result, he fled the country to evade creditors and the gangsters after him, leaving his wife an agunah.

The Agunah Unit in the Chief Rabbinate used a team of private investigators, headed by Victor Senanes, and indeed managed to locate the address of the divorce refusenik somewhere in a remote town in Russia, 600km (360 miles) from Moscow.

In a major operation, the management of the Rabbanut’s Batei Din and officials of the Agunah Unit decided to fly his wife, the agunah, and the couple’s daughter from Israel to Russia, and send them together with a Russian rav and sofer to the same town. They found the place where the husband was hiding out. They surprised him early one morning and asked him to give his wife the ‘get’ on the spot, as he promised to do when released from prison.

At first the man refused firmly, but after being told that if he did not give a ‘get’, his location would be exposed to the various parties seeking his life and money. A dayan and sofer along with two kosher witnesses were on hand, coming especially to complete the operation on the spot, in the remote village. B’chasdei Hashem, the ‘get’ was written on the spot.

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)


  1. True. It is an incredible story. Might become the plot of a good kosher novel.

    Periodically, we get to hear these reports of recalcitrant husbands being snared and freeing their agunah wives who got trapped. I rejoice for these women who can finally continue their lives without being chained.

    Of course, there can always be a “get m’usah” problem, and this complicates the process to isure that the get remains halachically valid. So grabbing the husband and beating the living daylights out of him would be a potential problem. But I would advocate for another option. First, he gives the get. Then everyone present should give him the beating that brings him really close to his last breath. The “get m’usah” problem solved, and the creep gets what he earned.

    Lastly, these reports give the impression that the dead marriages that have not been resolved with a get are only because of recalcitrant husbands. That is untrue. In reality, the failure for these marriages ending with a proper divorce/get is split around 50-50. There are women who make it impossible to take the final step of the get, with unrealistic demands and the unwillingness to settle the affairs. There are many cases that have been brought into the criminal justice system on fabricated accusations and charges, children who have not seen their fathers for extended amounts of time, and a variety of other baseless conflicts. Ask any askan who deals with divorces. There are reams of such situations. There are about as many women who are nasty, vicious, and conniving as there are men. I feel for any of the victims in this process, regardless of their gender.

  2. How is it so many have mob connections?
    Is it worth anymore just being an upstanding individual who has a profession ?

  3. By making this story public they put the wife and daughters life in serious danger. The next obvious thing for these gangsters and mobsters to do is to force the wife and mother to reveal where the husband is Chas Veshalom.
    And just by printing the distance of the place from Moscow already puts him in danger.
    I have read to many novels and these things are the mistakes that reveal whats supposed to remain a secret.
    The only other option is, is that they davka revealed misleading information so they will end up looking in all the wrong places. Or that the mother and daughter were blindfolded on there way to him and they really dont know where he is.
    There are many more ways this story could go but that would be beyond the scope of this comment.
    And i would not want to be the one who actually ends up helping these mobsters by saying what they can do. Hopefully they are to stupid to work it out.