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A Step Closer to Home

Shimmy Blum

Jacob Ostreicher is out on bail. How long will it take until he is back home in Brooklyn?

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

man prisonA full 18 months after Bolivian authorities arrested 54-year old Jacob Ostreicher, and imprisoned him in the notorious Palmasola prison without official charges, the Orthodox Brooklyn businessman was released to house arrest on $14,400 bail.

This development followed 29 court hearings at which judges and prosecutors used a variety of dubious legal maneuvers to avoid formally charging him with any crime, or considering bail. Authorities initially jailed Ostreicher in June 2011, accusing him of money laundering but never presented evidence to back their charge.

This long-awaited breakthrough can be accredited to a variety of factors, including Ostreicher’s health, which has suffered as a result of a liquids-only hunger strike and a diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease.

In addition, several holes were blown intoBolivia’s case against Ostreicher following the recent arrest of ten Bolivian officials including some of Ostreicher’s leading accusers. The most prominent arrestee was Fernando Rivera, the lead prosecutor in the case who was heard threatening a judge in court if he were to release Ostreicher on bail.

Focus on the Ostreicher saga, which began primarily in the American chareidi media, has reached the highest levels of the mainstream media in theUS,Bolivia, and beyond, turning it into a far reaching corruption scandal that has exposed some of the Bolivian government’s corruption and oppression to the world.


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