2 convicted for extremist Jewish cult kidnapping plot

1010 Wins/June 3, 2022

By Curtis Brodner

Woodbridge, New York -- Two members of the extremist Jewish cult Lev Tahor were convicted on Thursday for kidnapping a 14-year-old girl and 12-year-old boy who escaped the group with their mother.

Mordechay Malka, 27, successfully spirited the children away into Mexico in 2018, and Matityau Malka, 30, tried to kidnap them a year later after federal law enforcement recovered them and returned them to their home in Woodridge, New York.

Lev Tahor is an extremist Jewish sect that formed in Israel in the 1980s. They’re extreme beliefs have forced them to move frequently, and they’ve been based out of Israel, Brooklyn, Canada, Guatemala, Mexico, Romania, and, most recently, Bosnia-Herzegovina.

The two kids escaped with their mother from Lev Tahor’s Guatemala compound and made it into the United States in November 2018.

A Brooklyn family court granted her sole custody of the children and prohibited contact with their father, who is a Lev Tahor leader.

The cult intended to return the girl to her adult “husband” who Lev Tahor arranged her marriage to when she was 13 years old.

Mordechay Malka kidnapped the children from their bedrooms in December 2018 and brought them across the Mexico border.

The children were recovered in Mexico after a three-week search and returned to their mother. Matityahu Malka then tried to kidnap the children a second time in March 2019.

Mordechay was convicted of international parental kidnapping and related charges by a White Plains federal court.

Matityau was convicted of attempted international parental kidnapping.

Two of the Malkas’ co-conspirators, cult leader Nachman Helbrans and Mayer Rosner, were convicted in October 2021 for the kidnapping attempts and each sentenced to 12 years in prison.

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