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23 Mar, 201723 Mar, 2017
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Israeli authorities have arrested a 19-year-old suspect in connection with dozens of hoax bomb threats to Jewish community centers in the United States and around the world. ABC News reports that the unnamed suspect is a dual U.S.-Israel citizen.
Other reports indicate that the suspect is Jewish.
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The arrest was “part of an ongoing international investigation that has been taking place for several months with other police and security agencies in America and Europe,” Arutz Sheva reports.
Israeli police spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld said the suspect was “the guy who was behind the [Jewish Community Center] threats,” according to CBS News’ New York affiliate. The threats were also made in Europe, Australia, and New Zealand, as well as the U.S.
The suspect allegedly used technology in an attempt to hide his location. No motive for the hoax threats has yet been reported. The Jerusalem Post reports that the suspect is thought to be responsible for “most” of the threats.
The threats, causing panic at Jewish schools, synagogues, and community centers, were often blamed by Democrats and the some journalists on supporters of President Donald Trump.
When the president suggested that some of the antisemitic hate crimes could be hoaxes, the Huffington Post claimed he was echoing “white nationalists and far-right conspiracy theorists.” (Later, and in a subsequent address to Congress, President Trump explicitly condemned the wave of antisemitic threats.)
However, the arrests thus far suggest that most of the threats were indeed hoaxes. Earlier this month, another man was arrested for false threats against at least eight Jewish community centers. The suspect was a left-wing former journalist, who allegedly used the threats as part of a campaign of revenge against a former girlfriend.
One arrest last month concerned a suspect who allegedly vandalized Chicago’s Loop Synagogue and was apparently caught on surveillance video camera. The man, already facing a March trial on unrelated charges, was charged with a hate crime.
In December, a synagogue was vandalized with feces in Santa Monica, California. No arrest has yet been made in that case.
Almost all of the other hate crimes in recent weeks and months have been false bomb threats. Now, Israeli police believe they have identified the person responsible for most of those threats, which sparked panic worldwide.
Israeli minister of public security, Gilad Erdan, was quoted by ABC News as congratulating the Israeli police in solving the crime: “I congratulate the Israeli Police on leading a complex international investigation, together with law enforcement agencies from around the world, which led to the arrest of the suspect. We hope that this investigation will help shed light on some of the recent threats against Jewish institutions, which have caused great concern both among Jewish communities and the Israeli government.”
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named one of the “most influential” people in news media in 2016. His new book, How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.
This post originally appeared on Breitbart