Netherlands Can Extradite Fugitive Rabbi to Israel, Top Court Says

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Rabbi Eliezer Berland

The Supreme Court of the Netherlands said Tuesday that the government may extradite to Israel a rabbi accused of indecent assault.

Rabbi Eliezer Berland, aged 78 and currently living in the Netherlands, has opposed his extradition, "saying the alleged assaults happened in occupied Palestinian territory and so Israel has no jurisdiction," according to AFP.

A leader of the Breslov Hasidic sect, Berland fled Israel in 2012 to avoid arrest, after several women and a minor laid charges of indecent assault against him.

He evaded capture in the United States, Switzerland, Morocco, Zimbabwe and South Africa, according to AFP, before being arrested at Schiphol Airport Amsterdam in September last year. He was later released on bail pending a ruling on his extradition.

It is now for the Dutch Justice Ministry to decide whether or not to send the rabbi to Israel.

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