By COLlive.com reporter
Moshe Rubashkin, Rosh Hakohol of Crown Heights and a private businessman, was sentenced today with 16 months in prison and $450,000 restitution by federal judge James Noah Gardner.
Rubashkin and his son Sholom Rubashkin were indicted in November 2007 on charges of illegal storage of hazardous waste in their now-closed textiles company in Allentown, PA.
He will pay a $7,500 fine as well. His son’s court case is postponed for another 6 months.
Friends and supporters who arrived this morning at the Edward N. Cahn Federal Courthouse in Allentown accepted the verdict with mixed feelings, with some initially predicting “it will be bad.”
“Everything is for the good,” Rubashkin told COLlive.com on his way back home to Crown Heights.
Rubashkin is a member of a respected Lubavitch family with its roots in Russia and is known for his generosity and open home. He lately resigned from the chairmanship of the Crown Heights Jewish Community Council (replaced by Dr. Harvey Lang).
It is not clear whether he’ll retain his position as Rosh Hakohol – the elected head of the community.
He will begin his imprisonment on January 6, 2009, which he calls the day of “my surrender.” But he assured us that “all the good work and programs will continue. Nothing is going to stop. Not Nightlife (a social program for post-seminary Lubavitch girls), nothing.”
Rubashkin added: “I would like to thank the Rabbonim for coming and all the poeple who davened and came. Rivkah Shur and Phillys Mintz for rallying the people, Benjy Stock for sponsoring the buses.”