Friday, November 26, 2010

Incredible Betrayal

By Gary Snyder
Seventeen people have been arrested on charges that they faked stories of Holocaust survival to profit from money meant for survivors of Nazi persecution…a purported $42 million fraud on the nonprofit group, the Conference on the Jewish Material Claims Against Germany. Federal prosecutors say they have already uncovered more than 5,500 fraudulent claims, many of them containing altered birth dates and faked stories of suffering. At least 35 people have returned the money or agreed to repay it on an installment plan. Four of the 17 arrested in the case have pleaded guilty. Greg Schneider, the organization's executive vice president, warns against passing judgment on this community. While he believes most or all of the 5,500 allegedly fraudulent claims were made on behalf of real people, he says large numbers of applicants may have been unknowingly involved by unscrupulous middlemen. (AP)

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