Court documents suggest 14-year-old bride was "bought"

The Montreal Gazette/September 27, 2014

Montreal -- Documents from a Sûreté du Québec investigation into the ultra-orthodox Jewish sect Lev Tahor contain an allegation that a 14-year-old married girl was “bought.”

Parts of the affidavit to obtain a search warrant dated Nov. 18, 2013 are redacted. And that includes the portion of text immediately following the allegation about the married girl. It says she had been “bought by a” and the rest of the sentence is blacked out. The identity of who married the girl also isn’t revealed.

The police documents also allege kidnapping of children under the age of 14 from the Lev Tahor community, human trafficking and use of a computer to produce false documents.

The SQ has been investigating the group for alleged criminal activity. The community of about 250 people was based in Ste-Agathe-des-Monts, but most fled en masse to Chatham-Kent, Ont., last year. They left in the middle of the night shortly before two families were supposed to appear at a youth court hearing to determine if their children would be placed in foster care. The community moved to Guatemala in March.

The police documents unsealed this week showed the items seized at one address in Ste-Agathe-des-Monts in November 2013 included computers and a hard drive, nearly $90,000 in cheques and a 28-page “Lev Tahor objectionable activities” document.

The items seized from another address in Ste-Agathe-des-Monts in November 2013 included documents intended for youth protection officials, the police documents said.

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