7/2/08

Times: Samuel Israel III: Jewish or Christian?

UPDATE 7/2/08:
Samuel Israel III Turns Himself in to Police...

Times: Fund Manager Who Faked His Own Suicide Surrenders
By ABHA BHATTARAI

The fugitive hedge fund swindler Samuel Israel III surrendered to law enforcement officials on Wednesday, ending a manhunt that began shortly after he faked his suicide on the day that he was to report to prison in Ayer, Mass.Mr. Israel, who disappeared June 9, surrendered in Southwick, Mass., at 9:15 a.m., a spokeswoman for the marshals said....

Repost from 6/14/08:

The Times embeds in a story some mysterious comments about whether a financier on the lam (or did he jump off a bridge?) is a Jew or a Christian.
The Search for a Missing Trader Goes Global
By NELSON D. SCHWARTZ and ABHA BHATTARAI

Seemingly conflicting clues reflect the bizarre trajectory of the life of Samuel Israel III, the perpetrator of one of Wall Street’s biggest recent scams, who federal authorities believe is now on the run....

In the same April 9 letter to Judge McMahon where he speaks of suicide, Mr. Israel said he had become increasingly desperate as Bayou’s losses mounted. But “when what I perceived as divine intervention occurred in the form of the fictitious investment programs, I leapt at the opportunity,” he wrote.

Mr. Israel makes other puzzling personal revelations in the letter. Although the Israel family is prominent in the Jewish community in New Orleans — Mr. Israel’s father was recently honored by a local hospital for his philanthropic work and their rabbi also submitted a letter of support to the judge — Mr. Israel wrote that he has “always been a person of Christian faith, but through my saturating guilt and profound shame, I have reassessed what it means to be a Christian.”

Hearing of Mr. Israel’s spiritual turn, David S. Goldstein, emeritus rabbi of the Touro Synagogue in New Orleans, said, “You could knock me over with a feather.” He described Mr. Israel’s parents, Ann and Larry, “as greatly anguished over these events. The Israel name is one of distinction in this community, and that’s part of the embarrassment and the hurt.”...

3 comments:

John D. Enright said...

Guessing about the religious affiliation of Samuel Israel III is futile. He apparently doesn't exhibit even a modicum of the high moral and ethical standards of either.

Jack said...

I'd prefer that he not be Jewish, but that is only because of his behavior.

Not to say that we have a monopoly on good or bad people.

e jerry said...

I didn't think that Judaic tradition would allow someone to be the third consecutive generation with the same name if they're all living. Of course, he may be Sephardic...