Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Monsey Rabbonim continue Tropper investigation

Five Towns Jewish Times

Further evidence was introduced, reviewed, and discussed today in a meeting of Monsey Rabbonim, Roshei Yeshiva, and Askanim regarding the scandal surrounding Leib Tropper, the former head of the Eternal Jewish Family and Yeshiva Kol Yaakov. Tropper had ostensibly resigned last week, but it has been further reported that he continues to run and tend to the functions of the Yeshiva in an unchanged manner. Apparently, the inquiry has now widened to other areas as well. The meeting on Tuesday afternoon included some of the leading Rabbinic figures in Monsey and was chaired by one of the most senior Roshei Yeshiva in Monsey, HaGaon HaRav Moshe Green Shlita, Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshiva D’Monsey.

39 comments :

  1. Why is all the onus put on the Monsey Rabonim.Where are all the other Rabonim including the Aguda Moetzet Rabonim.Where are all the other Rabonim at last making a statement.
    'Bamakom Chilul Hashem ain cholkin kavod Larav.'

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  2. This will be a whitewash, with 'suggestions' that Tropper resign for the 'good of the comunity'.

    The 'evidence' will prove to be 'inconclusive'. Why? Because the rabbonim who took money from Tropper need to be vindicated and given a pass.

    They are/will pressure the beis din, all in the name of achdus.

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  3. Are we really sure that he quit his position? He is still listed as Rosh Yeshiva on Kol Yaakov's website.

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  4. The fox guards the hen house.

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  5. Josh,
    It's simple. Monsey rabbanim should deal with it because that's where Tropper is. We are a community-based religion.

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  6. Posted by Shqueez,
    Josh,
    It's simple. Monsey rabbanim should deal with it because that's where Tropper is. We are a community-based religion.


    Um, sorry, you should not have the Monsey Rabbis in charge of an investigation that affects world Jewry.

    Monsey is an insular community. As such, it has little experience in the really far out cases, and cannot even envision the far reaching implications of such cases.

    As an example, one of the Rabbis mentioned as being on this bes din was Moshe Finkel's mashgiach. He trusted Moshe (who had been president of Yeshiva of Spring Valley and thus an upstanding member of the Monsey community) to the point of not even investigating where Moshe bought his meat and poultry. Though this Rabbi is well loved for his ehrlichkeit, he is easily deceived and is probably incapable of grasping what Tropper could do, just as he was incapable of grasping what Finkel could do. It was not this Rabbi who caught or ostracized Finkel.

    This is an important and high profile case, and needs to be handled by gedolim around the world. Monsey will not be affected more than the rest of the Jewish world. On the contrary, local Rabbis can more easily be intimidated than a high power group.

    Once a global bais din passes down a psak, then the local Monsey bais din can rule on Kol Yaakov, which is the only Monsey specific issue.

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  7. DT,

    To the best of your knowledge, are the names mentioned in the investigation free of any conflicts of interest in this matter?

    What sort of a complainant could you see the beis din having to issue a hazmanah?

    Might Tropper be able to assemble another monsey beis din as would be his right as a defendent?

    Could you see him getting a non-local beis din (as did another Monsey rabbi) and pulling off some claim that the case was not local?

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  8. It is Wed. Jan 10.

    I called the Yeshiva this morning and the voice mail still has a mail box for Rabbi Tropper.

    I called back an hour later, got Rabbi Raice, and he said Rabbi Tropper resigned from the Yeshiva.

    Steve

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  9. "To the best of your knowledge, are the names mentioned in the investigation free of any conflicts of interest in this matter?"
    -------------
    This comment is correct: "This will be a whitewash".

    Rav Yaakov Kapelner is on the Beis Din and decided conversions and he has been a faculty member of Kol Yaakov for over 15 years. I am sure he understands who feeds his family.

    This connection and/or 'partner' is only one of many. It should be obvious why Monsey is allowed to investigate but WHY would anyone accept their findings or rulings regarding Tropper?

    Are we forgetting other men were implicated on the tropper tapes? Who are they? Are they in Monsey? Whatever it takes to cover this up will be done.

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  10. Just curious to know. What are they accusing R'Tropper of, are there Eidim, are these tapes good enough for Bais Din and if yes, what crime did he commit, If he's found guilty what is the punishment? I understand the traggic Chilul hashem involved, but is there any room to find him guilty and carry a punishment?

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  11. rabbi eidensohn i have een telling you this all week he has appointed himself as nasi of the yeshiva. and is comparing himself to ponevesher rov who was also a nasi without being the rosh yeshiva

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  12. The reid in Monsey is that he has resigned from Kol Yaakov. I received this information from insiders.

    What is 5 towns particular interest in this issue?

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  13. The article says: "Apparently, the inquiry has now widened to other areas as well."

    Does anyone know what the scope of the investigation is? Does it include more than just the incident with the tapes? Were there any other similar incidents?

    Does it include how EJF does conversions for intermarrieds? Does it include an investigation of EJF/Horizons finances?

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  14. This ins an in-house investigation, not an independent one.

    Almost none of these Rabbonim have any experience whatsoever in conducting an investigatiion, nor do almost any of them have any experience as dayanim.

    They also would not go against Rabbi Wachtfogel, who they revere and who most definitely has reasons to want to sweep this whole business under the carpet.

    Rabbi Breslauer's son, for instance, is Rosh Kollel in SOuth Fallsburg, I believe.

    Even without that family connection, one can be absolutely certain that NONE of these Rabbonim wishes to mess with Rabbi Wachtfoegl. (Nor would they delve into any matter that is potentially embarrassing to the Feinsteins.)

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  15. Recipients and PublicityFebruary 11, 2010 at 1:17 AM

    Getting rid of Tropper seems to be as hard as getting rid of "anonymous" posts on this blog!

    Either drop the rule of excluding anonymous posts or enforce it. It's that simple. People will catch on quickly! Ambiguity is never a good policy.

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  16. Here, again, is an easy no-brainer guideline for the venerable wise rabbinical men in Monsey:

    Shut down Tropper/EJF/Horizons/Kol Yaakov PERMANENTLY: A 12 Step Program!

    1. Leib and Leba Tropper must be put in CHEREM immediately! There are enough good rabbonim to do so. Tropper must PERMANENTLY give up all positions in the rabbinate. No more "rosh yeshiva" of anything no more "rabbi of this and that" and all the titles he collected like a tin pot dictator. Preferably the Tropper family must leave Monsey and settle in place like Switzerland (Tom Kaplan can buy them a chalet near a minyan) or in Florida (they have friends there) as PRIVATE CITIZENS stripped of all rabbinic rank, power and influence!

    2. EJF must be shut down PERMANENTLY!

    3. Kol Yaakov yeshiva in Monsey must be shut down PERMANENTLY!

    4. Horizons outreach program must be shut down PERMANENTLY!

    5. The Lillian Jean Kaplan Foundation must be shut down PERMANENTLY !

    6. Menachem Lubinsky of LUBICOM must be boycotted PERMANENTLY for the damage he facilitated by acting as EJF's PR and propaganda czar.

    7. Tom Kaplan and his wife Dafna Recanati, the enablers of Tropper/EJF/Horizons in these last years, must be kept out from the Orthodox and Charedi community (they are not religious Jews in any case and don't care much about wanting to be religious) and not one more cent must ever be accepted from them by anyone in the Torah world, PERMANENTLY!

    8. No more funds should be accepted in the Orthodox and Charedi world from Guma (he should have a refuah sheleimah bekarov) and Jamie Aguiar, and Guma's mother Ellen Kaplan Aguiar and the Aguiar family or their Lillian Jean Kaplan Foundation -- PERMANENTLY. They were also originally Tropper's enablers with the EJF scheme.

    9. Rav Reuven Feinstein must be put on notice to STOP his support of the immoral and corrupt Leib Tropper AT ONCE and NOT harass and instigate problems against those from Rav Sternbuch's side who have had the courage to speak the truth when it was not popular. Had R Reuven Feinstein heeded the advice of those from the BADATZ he would not be in the sick situation he is in now. He only has himself to blame. When you sleep with the dogs you catch fleas...

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  17. tzoorba said...

    The reid in Monsey is that he has resigned from Kol Yaakov. I received this information from insiders.
    --------------------

    actually the reid in monsey is that he is playing games.

    the truth is he will not willingly give up a peice of property in the heart of monsey worth close to 2 mil. along with the other perks: power,status,control.....

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  18. It seems that the tropper is troubles poster is a very troubled person indeed.No wonder your a blogger and they are rabbanim.

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  19. Observer 2
    You are correct in what you say about Rabbi Wachtfogel that no will start with him. But I heard this from someone who thought Rabbi Tropper wasframed but recently met him and he now refers to him as Mr. Tropper. I am sorry to say that money doesn't only talk in the Yeshivah world it screams. Where I learned BH this was not the story the RY never worshipped money but it seems today just at ETJ how many RH came and spoke and were paid very nicely so that they could purchase apartments for their children /grandchildren.Why Dod Rabbi Wachtfogel attend a malva melka where tropper was the guest speaker why was the speech not cancelled andI don't care that he left before he spoke. If he didnt think he should listen to him then there shouldn't be a double standard.

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  20. People are just naive when they think that Tropper will resign and just walk into the sunset.

    The guy is obsessed with power and control now he is probably is burning with thoughts of revenge and vengeance.

    He will have to be frog marched to a place where cannot hurt anyone and the keys need to be thrown away.

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  21. FYI Re: Grossman
    I heard that in NY in the shul that RA Soloveitzik zt"l, and his father, the Gram zt"l davened, the son of one of the members was convicted and sentenced to death and the Gra"m told the Rabbi of the shul that he could even do milacha and go up to Albany on Shabos to attempt to save the person's life.

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  22. They are also investigating the tax exempt status of various houses all over Monsey, and providing guidelines for how many minyanim and shiurim have to be held in a house for it to be properly designated as property of a congregation.

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  23. see this to the end, plaseFebruary 11, 2010 at 6:27 PM

    trace the money, speak to people who know about his abuse of power for years. It's time that one of the askonim get's it over the head. Let the other abusive askonim hear and be afraid that they're next.

    Maybe something good can come from all of this. Maybe there is hope... We've been controlled for way too long by Tropper's troopers and other such gangs, whose leaders wear a chaluka d'rabbonan but never learned mussar and use their Torah to help themselves and harm others.

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  24. Ben said,


    actually the reid in monsey is that he is playing games.

    the truth is he will not willingly give up a peice of property in the heart of monsey worth close to 2 mil. along with the other perks: power,status,control.....

    -----------------------------------------

    One of the members of the Kol Yaakov staff gives a daf yomi where I daven. He is not a liar and he is accurate. He said, as many others who know the score have said, that Tropper has resigned.

    The other reid may be as you say but it is false.

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  25. tzoorba said...

    One of the members of the Kol Yaakov staff gives a daf yomi where I daven. He is not a liar and he is accurate. He said, as many others who know the score have said, that Tropper has resigned.
    ------------------------------
    anybody on the staff of kol yaakov is by definition whoring himself to tropper. regardless of whether they have positive intentions. (and especially if as you say "he knows the score")
    or said staff member is EXTREMELY NAIVE in believing anything tropper claims.
    he has not actually resigned until he takes his name off all legal documents pertaining to any 'non profit' he has been associated with.

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  26. To Tropper Troubled

    GET A LIFE! you keep posting the same nonsense at every spot available.. You are very troubled and sick indeed. Go join GUMA in the Arbabenel Psychiatric ward and get the treatment you need! Guma will foot the bill!

    To DAAS TORAH.. why do you keep posting such an insane comment which is repeating itself? are you troubled as well?

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  27. He has really resignedFebruary 12, 2010 at 4:58 PM

    anybody on the staff of kol yaakov is by definition whoring himself to tropper. regardless of whether they have positive intentions. (and especially if as you say "he knows the score")
    or said staff member is EXTREMELY NAIVE in believing anything tropper claims.
    he has not actually resigned until he takes his name off all legal documents pertaining to any 'non profit' he has been associated with.

    _________

    I also was in Kol Yaakov and can confirm that his resignation is real and complete.

    While there is value in not being naive, Ben, and the situation should continue to be monitored, there is value in the basic halachos of loshon hara and motzi shem ra, as well as other dioraisas such as seeking vengeance, hating a fellow Jew, not judging a fellow Jew favorably (e.g. not assuming he has done teshuva), etc.

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  28. Ben said

    anybody on the staff of kol yaakov is by definition whoring himself to tropper. regardless of whether they have positive intentions. (and especially if as you say "he knows the score")
    or said staff member is EXTREMELY NAIVE in believing anything tropper claims.
    he has not actually resigned until he takes his name off all legal documents pertaining to any 'non profit' he has been associated with.

    --------------------------------------

    The Kol Yaakov Yehsiva has been pretty much independently run by true bnei Torah over the recent years with minimal involvement of T. It is basically a kosher and established baal teshuva Yeshiva and minyan.

    What you are suggesting is that the entire staff should quit now and abandon their jobs because of the evils of T. My wife had such a shaala at an institution that was indicted by the government for false practices and we asked a Shaala to Rab Pam and he said that as long as we were not involved in any of misdeeds we would not have to dissociate ourselves. The same applies here fully.

    The Yeshiva is now suffering from a lack of support and funding due to the departure of T and other people who provided funding to the Yeshiva. T has no active involvement in any of the activities of the Yeshiva at all and it is not clear when his name will disappear from it.

    You are throwing out the baby with the bath water with this approach.

    Life is not simple and the Yeshiva deserves to continue without T despite of T's failings

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  29. 'and we asked a Shaala to Rab Pam and he said that as long as we were not involved in any of misdeeds we would not have to dissociate ourselves. The same applies here fully.'

    I think it is not this way. If they were being not involved then you are right but many times the rebbes at KY knew problems and did not fight him. They just said we are not the rosh yeshiva and he is. So now to say it is fine to work in a yeshiva for a problem person and not to protest is to be a yiras shomayin. Not true. Any rebbe with sense of write and wrong was either thrown out or quit in protessed.

    Don't forget these are BTs and they learn these wrong lessons from the rebbes.

    Also who will find talmidim. T was very strong pessonality and if you want real yeshiva you need new strong leader.

    Also until a few months past T was like g-d to all these talmids. He trained them how to be Jewish. This must be fixed.

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  30. He has really resigned said...
    -----------------------------
    you set a great example...

    first you accuse me of vengeance and hatred and then you lecture me about judging people favorably.

    as for teshuva, when one denies any wrongdoing,(except for issues of 'modesty'..... -- making it sound like maybe he walked outside without his frock)you cannot assume there was regret or repentance.
    additionally you are only supposed to assume teshuva for an individual who slipped up as an aberration to their wholesome character not for a serial avaryan... with a 30 yr long history of abuse,corruption,fraud,............

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  31. I just heard T was in a meeting with his talmid at S. Fallsberg shul erev shabbos. I think investigation will be baloney they will just keep doing what they want with money.

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  32. What you are suggesting is that the entire staff should quit now and abandon their jobs because of the evils of T. My wife had such a shaala at an institution that was indicted by the government for false practices and we asked a Shaala to Rab Pam and he said that as long as we were not involved in any of misdeeds we would not have to dissociate ourselves. The same applies here fully.....
    -----------------------------------
    troppers primary involvement is the money(paycheck & salaries). money = control... control is everything.

    over the last 25 years there were many people with REAL integrity who left kol yaakov as soon as they realized what tropper was about.(i know of more then 10).
    they did not need to ask a shailo if they should leave. it was obvious and clear as day.


    ...The same applies here fully...

    unfortunatly r' pam is longer with us. but that does not mean you can compare one case to another. i cant comment on your specific case but it does seem that it was a financial fraud issue.this case is alot more than money . corruption, abuse, fraud... the list goes on and on. if i get into the details i'll get ten comments accusing me of lashon hara and m'sh'r. but you can use your imagination and get creative. tropper sure has.


    ....and it is not clear when his name will disappear from it....


    exactly my point. until then he has not resigned.

    life sure is not simple but for men with integrity its a bit simpler.

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  33. TO ben said:

    what exactly are you "claiming" as a 30 year track record? you cant just make blanket statements without backup sources to solidify your claims! This is the first scandal I have heard of regarding Tropper///

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  34. ...This is the first scandal I have heard of regarding Tropper
    --------------------------------
    maybe your just not as informed as you think.

    not all scandals appear in print.

    even r' ribiat concurred that there was a kalo dilo pasik. only that the beis din could not pasken on that alone because it may have been started by one of his MANY detractors (ie: enemies).

    wow, ponder that. now thats a limud zechus we can all be envious of.

    the real truth here is alot uglier than you wish to contemplate. hey, i dont know, maybe you just cant handle the truth.

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  35. ...This is the first scandal I have heard of regarding Tropper
    --------------------------------
    maybe your just not as informed as you think.

    not all scandals appear in print.
    ___________________________________

    Ben,

    You make a claim that a person is guilty of repeated behavior for 30 years and then you fail to back it up with even one piece of evidence other than saying, "not all scandels appear in print."

    Come on.

    If all the other 30 years filled with scandels were so real then why didn't others force him to resign during the numerous infractions over the years that you claim he was guilty of.

    Let's review what we know. There are tapes that seem to implicate him of behavior extremely inappropriate for a person of his standing. And for that, he has resigned from EJF and KY.

    Why do you take your venom and extend it to others in the yeshiva?

    What more do you want with R Tropper? You want his head on a platter? You want public malkus?

    R Tropper may have done something wrong, but at least he's out of power. What really worries me is vindictive self-righteous people like yourself. Talk about not being courageous, honest or self-reflective enough to do teshuva! Do a middos check lately?

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  36. To Ben said:
    You dont make any sense.. just because he has many detractors doesnt prove your unfounded statement of a 30 year track record for these illicit acts he is being accused of... you also claim to know the REAL truth, Are you Hashem who knows all?? Maybe you cant handle the fact that you are a person with limited knowledge and not being able to back up your exagerated statements condemning one with no solid sources.

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  37. ...You make a claim that a person is guilty of repeated behavior for 30 years and then you fail to back it up with even one piece of evidence other than saying, "not all scandels appear in print."

    Come on....
    ----------------------
    which part of KALO DILO PASIK do you not understand.


    ....If all the other 30 years filled with scandels were so real then why didn't others force him to resign during the numerous infractions over the years that you claim he was guilty of....
    -----------------------------
    because he is a manipulator of the worst kind.

    this scandal is the tip of the iceberg of what tropper is all about. only because it is of a sexual and deviant nature has it made such a splash.
    he is rotten to his core. (and yes even rotten people do good things occasionally). the harm he has caused to numerous individuals over the years is beyond belief.


    ...And for that, he has resigned from EJF and KY....
    -------------------------
    i will reiterate what i posted earlier: until he takes his name off all legal papers pertaining to any and all "non profits" he has been associated, he has not resigned.


    ...Why do you take your venom and extend it to others in the yeshiva?...
    -------------------
    because they enable him.

    in any case its not venom. i know some on the staff there, and they are fine people, just a bit misguided by the almighty $$$.

    ...What more do you want with R Tropper? You want his head on a platter? You want public malkus?....
    -------------------
    just to go away.
    he has not. and will not do so willingly.

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  38. Eliyahoo William DwekMay 2, 2010 at 3:55 PM

    Any man who chooses to be a ‘rabbi’ (‘true teacher’ of Torah) or a ‘dayan’ (‘judge’), or a ‘mekubal’ (‘kabbalist’) should be doing so Voluntarily. Out of his pure love for Hashem and the Torah. And his Ahavat Yisrael.

    If he refuses to do community work voluntarily, and wants and accepts payment for everything he does, such a man should not be heading a community. He should get a job and earn a living. He can collect milk bottles or clean the windows. That is what is called ‘earning a living’.

    Torah is learned, studied and taught: out of Love. Voluntarily. But the ‘rabbis’ have turned the Torah into their ‘Profession’, from which they earn money.

    We are commanded in the Shema to:
    ‘LOVE Hashem, your G-d, WITH ALL YOUR HEART, and with all your soul and with all your might.’

    ‘VE’AHAVTA et Hashem Elokecha BECHOL LEVAVECHA uvechol nafshecha uvechol meodecha.’ (Devarim, Vaethanan, 6:4-5)

    Is the ordinary man or woman PAID to pray to Hashem, or to say some words of Torah? No. Has veshalom! But the rabbis are. These men can give ‘lovely’ shiurim that they have rehearsed. But they would not give a shiur without being paid for it.

    The true hachamim and rabbis of old, all actually worked at proper jobs and professions.

    Wake up! Even a little child could have worked this out. These salaried men can never truly stand for the Torah, because in a case of conflict between a correct course of action according to the Torah, and the rabbi or rav’s pocket – his pocket and position will always prevail.

    Pirkei Avot: (2:2)
    “Raban Gamliel beno shel Rabi Yehuda HaNassi omer: yafeh talmud Torah im derech eretz, sheyegiat shenaihem mashkachat avon. Vechol Torah she’ein imah melacha sofa betailah ve’goreret avon. Vechol haoskim im hatzibbur yiheyu imahem leShem Shamayim……”

    “Rabban Gamliel, the son of Rabi Yehuda HaNassi, said: It is good to combine Torah study with a worldly occupation, for working at them both drives sin from the mind. All Torah without an occupation will in the end fail and lead to sin. And let all who work for the community do so for the sake of Heaven………”

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  39. Very Suprising Moshe Finkels Uncle Gavriel Finkel is The "Posek" for the Kcl Hashgacha in Lakewood NJ, Rabbi Yehuda Shain Has a Whole Expose on Finkels KCL Hashgacha in Lakewood on his Website "Yudels Rest of The Story" at Yudelstakes.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete

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