By COLlive reporter
Recent internet rumors that Rabbi Menashe Klein was involved in a “severe fraud scheme” were adamantly denied last week by his followers in the U.S. and Israel.
The report claimed that the known halachic authority and Holocaust survivor moved to Israel to avoid arrest for money laundering and other financial crimes.
Klein had a close relationship with the Lubavitcher Rebbe in his early years and maintains close ties to key Chabad Chasidim.
In response, the “Committee of Ungvar Rabbis of America” sent COLlive the following statment:
“As there have been lies and denigration of Kovod HaTorah being spread recently, we are announcing that the Rov was not involved in any complications, and there is no government action pending against him.
“As is well-known, the Rov has spent much time in Eretz Yisroel in the past number of years, may Hashem grant him a long, good life,” it stated.
In May 2009, an article quoting Klein as calling the messianic group within Chabad “this sect of crazies” caused a stir, receiving over 550 comments on COLlive.com.
He later met with his friend Rabbi Noach Fox of Crown Heights to clarify the statements.
But that didn’t stop some from speculating that the supposed warrant for Rabbi Klein’s arrest was a ‘spiritual punishment’ for criticizing the messianics.
“May the mouths of those spewing falsehood and filth be closed, and may the strength of the tzadik be uplifted,” the Ungvar Committee said.