web analytics
May 22, 2015 / 4 Sivan, 5775
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post


Home » News & Views » US »

Orthodox Brooklyn Businessman Back In U.S. After More Than Two Years In Bolivian Captivity

Jacob Ostreicher

Jacob Ostreicher

Jacob Ostreicher, an Orthodox Brooklyn businessman held in jail and under house arrest in Bolivia since 2011, has returned to the United States, a State Department official confirmed Tuesday.

How he returned, however, remained unclear as of Tuesday evening.

Based on a conversation with her uncle, Ostreicher’s daughter, Chaya Gitty Weinberger, told The Jewish Press that her father “had been kidnapped and that the kidnappers contacted my Uncle Aron.

“They wanted ransom. They dropped him off in international waters in the Pacific, and now he is in an undisclosed location. But still a lot is unclear, and I’m still waiting to talk to my father.”

Others suspect the U.S. government may have helped Ostreicher escape Bolivia, but when asked for details, a State Department spokesman would only say, “We refer you to [Ostreicher] regarding questions concerning his travel to the United States.”

Bolivian Justice Minister Cecilia Ayllon said Ostreicher duped authorities at an unspecified border crossing on Sunday night before boarding a Los Angeles-bound LAN Chile plane in the Peruvian capital of Lima. She said Bolivia is alerting Interpol and could request the American’s extradition as part of an ongoing money laundering investigation.

“His escape demonstrates that he was involved in the crimes he’s accused of,” Ayllon said at a press conference.

Ostreicher, who had a flooring business in New York, invested money with a group involved in a rice-growing venture in Bolivia and was managing the business when he was arrested in 2011 on suspicion of money laundering. He also was accused of doing business with drug traffickers.

However, in June, Bolivian authorities arrested 15 people – including government officials – on charges of engineering his arrest in hopes of extracting a cash payment.

Despite those charges, Bolivia did not release Ostreicher, a father of five, and his case drew the attention of leading lawmakers in Congress, including Reps. Chris Smith (R-N.J.) and Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), and Sean Penn, the movie actor and human rights activist.

“I am thrilled by the reports that Jacob Ostreicher, my constituent, who has been illegally detained in a Bolivian prison for two years, is finally free,” Nadler said in a statement. “He has suffered greatly and his family has worked tirelessly for his freedom. I am overjoyed at the idea that they will soon be together.”

New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind, who pushed for Ostreicher’s release, told The Jewish Press he couldn’t “comment on any information about” Ostreicher’s return. “What’s important,” he said, “is that after two and a half years an innocent man will be back home with children, grandchildren and family, with Hashem’s help. Baruch Hashem, the ordeal is over.”

In a statement, New York City Councilman David Greenfield said he was “relieved that Jacob Ostreicher’s long ordeal has finally come to an end and he is safely back in the United States. It was clear all along that the case against him was fabricated… It was amazing to witness the incredible courage and fortitude that Jacob’s family displayed throughout this ordeal.”

As of Tuesday evening, Ostreicher’s whereabouts were still unknown, though one source placed him in the New York area, and Sean Penn, through his publicist, said he was with Ostreicher, who was receiving medical attention.

It was due to Penn’s direct intervention last year that Ostreicher was released from jail after 18 months and placed under house arrest.

– JTA, Jewish Press staff

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

3 Responses to “Orthodox Brooklyn Businessman Back In U.S. After More Than Two Years In Bolivian Captivity”

  1. Leo Erwin says:

    SO, THIS RABBI IS A BUSINESS MAN…AND GOT PICKED UP AT THE BORDER…SO….HE SHOULD LAUNDER HIS MONEY AT THE LAUNDERMAT…HOW NUTS CAN YOU BE…DON'T WHINE WHEN YOU GET CAUGHT…

  2. Anonymous says:

    Leo Erwin must have insider information. Where does it say he is a Rabbi? If so many prominent Americans believe in Oestreicher, then why don't you? You are probably an assimilated Jew who wants to denigrate the observant Jew's.

  3. Wow, a Hollywood actor finally uses his media power for GOOD!

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Seder at the White House. The one without the kippa is President Obama.
Obama Reaching Out to (Liberal) Jews in Sermon at Synagogue
Latest News Stories
Volunteers with Shomer Hachadash.

Eight years ago, an Israeli rancher from Moshav Zippori in the Lower Galilee region reached a breaking point. Thieves and marauders had been targeting Chaim Zilberman’s sprawling ranch; his land was burnt black and cattle fences cut down. On the verge of bankruptcy, the rancher told his family during a Friday Shabbat dinner one night […]

The Golders Green Eruv

Scotland Yard said it cannot prevent the upcoming neo-Nazi march that is planned for July 4th.

Display Heads

A store in Rafah, Gaza displays women’s Islamic head coverings for sale.

Thomas Countryman, Assistant Secretary of State for international security and nonproliferation.

A State Dept. official is in Israel to talk about making the region nuclear-free.

The highway at the property is a favorite spot for PA Arabs to try to throw

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu annual medical report  as written by his personal physician, Dr. Tzvi Berkovitz, states, “Blood tests were completely normal including those for sugar, cholesterol and fats. The Prime Minister’s blood pressure was normal (120/80), aided by light medication.” The reports notes that “Prime Minister Netanyahu trains several times a week at a […]

The President will speak Friday night at Washington’s largest Conservative synagogue, whose rabbi is a homosexual.

This week ISIS captured two major cities, one in Iraq, one in Syria. Assad’s escape plan revealed.

Israeli Pres. Rivlin expresses deep concern after vandals torch a Bnei Akiva building and synagogue in northern Israel.

More than 70 percent of Muslims in Netherlands reportedly view their brethren fighting the “jihad” in Syria as “heroes.”

Israel rejects a Swiss court decision granting $1.1 billion to Iran after an oil deal went sour after the Islamic Revolution.

Liberman apologizes for describing Netanyahu’s decision to meet with head of Arab Joint Party List as “autistic.”

Former FM Avigdor Liberman slams PM Netanyahu for scheduling talks with the head of the united Arab parties.

Israel’s farmers brought the first fruits of the field to Pres. Reuven Rivlin and his wife Nechama on this eve of Shavuoth.

Members of the Knesset Honor Guard, Home Front Command, Firefighters, IDF, and Israel Police, participated in an emergency drill today, May 21, 2015, simulating a drone falling inside the Knesset complex.

World Bank also comes up with a brainstorm: Give more money to Hamas to “rehabilitate” Gaza, or is it vice-versa?

More Articles from Combined News Services
U.S. House Speaker John Boehner

Boehner criticized President Obama for failing to take the threat of terrorism and the Iranian nuclear threat seriously.

L-R: Generals Omar Bradley, George Patton, and Dwight Eisenhower inspecting art stolen by the Nazis.

World Jewish Congress President Ronald Lauder welcomed the museum’s decision to discover which pieces were looted by the Nazis and to work to restitute them.

“We want the residents of Gaza to live in dignity and prosperity, rebuild their homes and return to normal life,” Yaalon said. “But we are very worried. Just yesterday Hamas representatives said they intend to reconstruct the infiltration tunnels, instead of rebuilding the homes of Gaza’s residents.”

“When the Metropolitan Opera incites violence you can’t know what will happen,” Wiesenfeld said at the protest.

Nemmouche became a radical jihadist while serving a sentence in France in 2009 for armed robbery, TF1 reported.

“Never again, Lord, never again,” the pope implored. “Here we are, Lord, shamed by what man, created in your own image and likeness, was capable of doing.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Abbas must choose between peace with Israel or Hamas.

“We stand at the gate of hell on earth,” MK Yariv Levin (Likud-Beiteinu) said. “The visit by a delegation of the parliament of an independent and strong Jewish state, together with survivors who were here, symbolizes Israel’s total commitment to the protection of the Jewish people.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/us-news/orthodox-brooklyn-businessman-back-in-u-s-after-more-than-two-years-in-bolivian-captivity/2013/12/18/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: