A Maryland rabbi who faked tales of daring rescues of lost Jewish Torahs to solicit $1.4-million for his charity was sentenced Thursday to 51 months in prison, The Washington Post reports.
Rabbi Menachem Youlus pleaded guilty in February to mail and wire fraud. The self-styled “Jewish Indiana Jones” admitted that he fabricated stories of trips to European monasteries, mass graves, and concentration camps to find sacred scrolls lost during the Holocaust to raise funds for his Save a Torah Foundation.
Prosecutors said Torahs that Mr. Youlus sold on the basis of the Holocaust claims were purchased from local dealers and had no known historical value. The rabbi was also sentenced to three years’ probation and ordered to pay over $990,000 in restitution to donors.