Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Carmen Weinstein 'has fled the country'

Update: friends of Carmen in the UK say that media reports that she has fled the country (or has taken refuge in the Israeli embassy) are without foundation. They say that she is in touch with them from Egypt, where she is biding her time while preparing her court appeal.

The plot thickens....! The leader of Egypt's minuscule Jewish community, octogenarian Carmen Weinstein (pictured), is reported to have fled Egypt for the US after being sentenced to three years in jail for fraud. Ynet News has the story:

Egyptian media reported that Carmen Weinstein (82), convicted of fraud, had fled the country after she received a sentence of three years behind bars, a fine of 10,000 Egyptian pounds ($1,750) and compensation payments of 40,000 Egyptian pounds ($7,000).

Weinstein was convicted of illegally selling a building belonging to the Jewish community to Egyptian businessman Nabil Bashai. She received the money but the deeds were not transferred to his owership because she had no right to sell the building.

Egyptian security sources confirmed that Weinstein had disappeared and that searches had not discovered her whereabouts.

Some Egyptian sources claimed she had escaped to the US. Hassan, her neighbor and owner of a shoe shop in central Cairo, said she had fled to an unknown destination after the sentence was handed down. He said she would visit his store most days, but that she had not been recently.

The Jewish community secretary, Rauf Fuad Tawfiq, said Weinstein had not fled, but gone to visit the US, and that she intended to return to Egypt at a yet undetermined date. He also said she had left before the ruling, and not in response.

Security sources said she may have succeeded in leaving because it takes a few days to update the lists of those forbidden to leave at the airports and border crossings. The A-Zaman newspaper even accused Israel of being behind her departure.

Read article in full

Carmen Weinstein convicted of fraud

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