Community Briefs: Jewish Attorney Receives Five Years and More

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Coronavirus Doesn’t Disrupt OU Kosher for Passover Supply Chain

Orthodox Union Kosher, the world’s largest kosher certification agency, said March 23 that the coronavirus hasn’t disrupted the supply chain for kosher for Passover food.

OU Kosher said it will certify more than 7,400 products for Passover 2020, which are available both in the United States and overseas.


“Kosher for Passover food products were produced at the end of the 2019 calendar year and shipped shortly thereafter,” OU Kosher CEO Rabbi Menachem Genack said. “As a result, there will not be any problem accessing kosher for Passover products.”

“Additionally, food manufacturers are continuing to produce food during this time and we have been assured by our clients — including Manischewitz, Empire, Kedem and others — that there is plenty available and that there is no issue with food production for Passover,” Genack said.

AJC Launches #BeAMensch

American Jewish Committee announced on March 19 #BeAMensch, an initiative to encourage and highlight acts of kindness and decency during the coronavirus pandemic.

“In the face of the unique adversity of COVID-19, everyday acts of kindness to others becomes particularly vital,” AJC CEO David Harris said. “Anyone can be a mensch by helping a family member, a neighbor, a stranger, an elderly person, by confronting coronavirus pandemic despair, or in so many other ways. The important thing is to extend oneself on behalf of others.”

AJC said uplifting stories from across the United States and the world will be featured at AJC.org/BeAMensch and on its Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts. The organization noted that while mensch generally refers to one person, “we’ll also be highlighting mensch-y behavior on the part of groups, institutions, organizations, companies and even countries.”

AJC said it will share tips on ways to be a mensch and lend a helping hand.

To participate in #BeAMensch, visit AJC.org/BeAMensch to share stories. You can also share stories on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #BeAMensch.

Jewish Attorney Receives Five Years in Prison for Fraud

Attorney Neil I. Mittin, 64, of Huntingdon Valley received a five-year prison term and was ordered to pay $3.4 million in restitution for stealing from his law firm, Gay Chacker & Mittin, United States Attorney William M. McSwain announced.

Mittin had pleaded guilty to mail fraud in September. He had worked for nearly four decades at a personal injury law firm, McSwain said. Between 2008 through 2018, “Mittin engaged in a scheme to steal numerous personal injury and other legal matters from the law firm by secretly referring them to outside attorneys,” according to a news release.

Mittin concealed his conduct from the law firm by closing the files for those matters and making it appear there was no settlement or resolution and that the cases weren’t viable, the release said.

The outside attorneys who received the referrals tried to resolve them with a settlement or trial, with Mittin paid referral fees for successful resolutions.

The cases generated about $10.8 million in financial recoveries, with Mittin defrauding his firm of about $4.2 million in legal fees and costs.

FIDF Gives Update

Friends of the Israel Defense Forces in the Pennsylvania and Southern NJ Region Executive Director Tzvia Wexler said IDF soldiers serving in Israel are in need of hygiene kits as they continue operational activities and duties that include reducing the spread of the virus and preparing for civilian isolation.

“These are times when the community comes together,” she said, noting that each hygiene kit costs $4. “The FIDF Pennsylvania and Southern NJ Board of Directors has been leading the way helping more than 5,000 soldiers receive hygiene kits within the last week.”

Anyone wishing to contribute can do so by visiting fidf.org/donate, calling 215-383-2890, or mailing a check to FIDF, 500 Office Center Drive, Suite 400, Fort Washington, PA 19034.

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