NEW YORK (VINnews) — A shocking story of deceipt and betrayal has rocked the Jewish community in the US.
A Lebanese person claiming to be a chareidi Jew named Eliyah Haliwa joined the Texas Jewish community and became affiliated with the local Chabad representatives. The man displayed a spurious ancestral lineage to prove his Jewish descent.
While he was in Texas, the man met a Jewish girl of Syrian descent and they decided to get married. The man allegedly did not know at first that the girl was Jewish and she did not know that he was Lebanese. As their relationship developed, the man became more involved in the Jewish community in Texas and even learnt to speak fluent Hebrew. The girl was convinced that he was Jewish and religious although she now knew his Lebanese descent, and the two eventually married in New York.
A few weeks after her marriage, the woman become suspicious of various things about her new husband’s behavior and one night she discovered a Lebanese passport with his photo and another Arabic name on it. She immediately contacted family and friends, who reached out to the authorities. The woman is now reportedly living in a safe house.
The FBI is apparently investigating the shocking incident. “Eliyahu”‘s lineage contained fake Ashkenazic names including Meyer Lansky, the name of a former Jewish gangster. He also claimed to work at NSA and produced a fake “letter” from his workmates there. He had also provided a plausible explanation why his family were not able to attend the wedding.
The US Home Department was also notified as well as the Israeli consulate in New York. The authorities are verifying if the man entered the US illegally.
A senior member of the Chabad community in the US told Be’Chadrei Chareidim that “Chabad did not convert this Shiite Lebanese imposter and did not perform the wedding or get involved in any way in the identity of the man.
“This is an unfortunate case of a confused youth who struck up a virtual relationship with a member of the Syrian Jewish community who was mortified to discover after her marriage that he was not Jewish. A Chabad rabbi in Texas was asked by the officiating rabbi to walk the groom to the Chupah since he did not have any close relatives in the US.”