4 jailed over fatal beating of Israeli-French rabbi in Ukraine

Menachem Mendel Deitsch was robbed and assaulted in Zhytomyr in October 2016; he never regained consciousness and died six months later

Rabbi Menachem Mendel Deitsch (
Rabbi Menachem Mendel Deitsch (

Four people were reportedly sentenced over the deadly assault of an Israeli-French rabbi three years ago in the Ukrainian town of Zhytomyr.

Menachem Mendel Deitsch was robbed of his cellphone and money and beaten at the main train station in Zhytomyr in the early hours of October 7, 2016, and left unconscious. He was not discovered until hours later, suffering from multiple head injuries and brain trauma. Deitsch never regained consciousness and died six months later at a Tel Aviv hospital.

According to reports in ultra-Orthodox media on Saturday night, two Ukrainian men received jail sentences of nine and eleven years, respectively. Another two women — who were minors at the time of the attack — were jailed for seven years over the killing.

Deitsch was a longtime Chabad-Lubavitch emissary in France and later served in Israel. He is survived by his wife and 11 children, and three brothers.

The attack took place three days after the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashanah, when thousands of Jewish pilgrims flock to the Ukrainian graveside of Rabbi Nahman of Bratslav in Uman.

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