web analytics
April 25, 2014 / 25 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post
Spa 1.2 Combining Modern Living in Traditional Jerusalem

A unique and prestigious residential project in now being built in Mekor Haim Street in Jerusalem.



Home » News & Views » US »

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

Jacob Ostreicher

Jacob Ostreicher

Share Button

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

Share Button

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.

Leave a comment (Select your commenting platform)

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.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Loading Facebook Comments ...
Loading Disqus Comments ...
Current Top Story
Mock Eviction Notice shoved under the doors of students' rooms in predominantly Jewish NYU dorm by NYU SJP.
NYU Latest Site of Anti-Israel Mock Eviction Notices
Latest News Stories
Sitting on a street corner

A corner in the Jerusalem Machane Yehuda Mall.

Mock Eviction Notice shoved under the doors of students' rooms in predominantly Jewish NYU dorm by NYU SJP.

NYU SJP students crept into a primarily Jewish dorm and shoved propaganda under the doors of the sleeping students.

Tzipi Livni 2

Even after the Hamas-Fatah reconciliation, Tzipi Livni won’t give up on her obsession with negotiating with the Palestinian Authority – “the door is still open.”

The Association of Tennis Professionals World Tour will play this year in Israel, the first time that Israel has hosted an ATP tournament since 1996, according to the organization. The tournament, offering $1 million in prize money, will take place at the Israel Tennis Center in the Tel Aviv suburb of Ramat HaSharon Sept. 15-21 […]

The Boycott Movement, like the Palestinian Authority, is slowly but surely dissolving itself.

The Israeli security cabinet unanimously decided today that Israel would not negotiate with a Palestinian government backed by Hamas, the terrorist organization that calls for Israel’s destruction. Considered a severe blow to peace talks, the ‘historic’ Hamas-Fatah unity pack was announced on Wednesday following a seven-year power struggle between the two factions. After Hamas’s victory […]

Ostrovsky was beaten and blindfolded during his captivity

Northeastern University has provisionally reinstated the Students for Justice in Palestine chapter on campus. The SJP chapter will remain on probation through January 2015, according to a notification letter from Dr. Laura A. Wankel, the university’s vice president for student affairs. Students for Justice in Palestine was suspended from campus on March 7 for at […]

HAS and El Al are no longer flying the friendly skies together – and loyal customers are getting hurt the most.

Ellen Degeneres gave away SodaStream products to audience members as an eco-friendly Earth Day gift.

Turkey “will strongly support the reconciliation agreement and offer all humanitarian aid” for the Hamas-Fatah unity government that was announced Wednesday,  Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu told Gaza’s de facto prime minister Ismail Haniyeh. Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan became a fan of Hamas five years ago, at the same time relations with Israel […]

Two worshippers in a synagogue on Passover saved a child from death in a burning car that exploded shortly after the rescue. The worshippers rushed to the burning vehicle after hearing the family’ scream for help, and they found the toddler strapped in a car seat. The worshippers, Moshe Kupperman and a second man, identified […]

At the press conference with the Israeli reporters, Abbas threatened to cancel the Oslo Accords, dismantle the Palestinian Authority, and force the Israeli government to pay the salaries of PA employees and the police.

A survivors’ daughter serving in the IDF brings pride and joy to a Holocaust survivor.

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

Border Police in Yitzhar’s yeshiva have plenty of time on their hands to learn a bit of Torah.

More Articles from Combined News Services
(L-R) Senior Hamas leader Moussa Abu Marzouk; senior Fatah official Azzam Al-Ahmed; head of the Hamas government Ismail Haniyeh; and deputy speaker of Palestinian Parliament Ahmed Bahar attend a meting in Gaza City on Tuesday.  (Photo by Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90)

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

Members of Knesset at Auschwitz for Holocaust Remembrance Day on Monday.

“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.

Former Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon was laid to rest Monday at his family’s ranch in southern Israel following a state funeral that drew international dignitaries – Vice President Biden represented the U.S. – and scores of Israeli officials.

“Today is a day of joy to our people, our families and our hero prisoners who’ve achieved freedom,” Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas declared Monday night as he personally greeted 18 terrorists released by Israel.

“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.”

Israel’s peace talks with the Palestinians remain mostly shrouded in secrecy, but one thing is certain: The Palestinian prisoner release that paved the way for their resumption is increasing tensions in Israel’s governing coalition.

There is a “real possibility” that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad “could survive Syria’s civil war and even prevail in it” against the rebels trying to topple him, Israeli International Relations and Strategic Affairs Minister Dr. Yuval Steinitz told a group of foreign journalists in Jerusalem on Monday.

Rabbi Michael Broyde, a leading Modern Orthodox rabbi and dayan, admitted to using a fake persona to join a rival rabbinic organization and herald his own work in scholarly journals.

    Latest Poll

    Now that Kerry's "Peace Talks" are apparently over, are you...?







    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

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: