Orthodox Jew has a beard cut in jail in SP and denounces humiliation
SAO PAULO - An Orthodox Jew aged 56, arrested on landing in Guarulhos International Airport with jewels, diamonds and watches undeclared denounces have suffered humiliation in jail in Sao Paulo. Electrical Engineer, with American passport, he left for Germany on July 6 and said he would visit friends in Sao Paulo. He was arrested when he passed the landing.
Now he claims to be traumatized.
- I was very ill, wondering what the Germans did to the Jews 60 years ago. And that is what they did to me now in Brazil - said.
The engineer spent three days detained at the Federal Police, in Guarulhos Airport and then was transferred to a Provisional Detention Center (PDC) .. He says that in the town, after passing a screening, he was the victim of religious intolerance.
He says that a jailer threw on the floor a yarmulke - a small hat mandatory for all Orthodox Jew.
- He then began talking with a colleague who was on the side, laughing at me. Then they talked 'Heil Hitler' - account.
"Heil Hitler", "Save Hitler", is the most notorious Nazi salute at the time of the Holocaust.
The engineer says that, after insulting him, the guards found in his luggage two religious objects, the tallit and tefillin, and threw on the floor of the accessories that are considered sacred.
- When a person engages with the tallit, this time, he is reminding you that has to fulfill the 613 commandments of God. When a Jew puts on tefillin in the morning, is his connection with God - explains Rabbi Richard Tamezgui.
But the worst was yet to come.
- The jailer asked me how long I had a beard. I said that since she had started to grow. He replied, then, that from that day, I will not have no beard - recalls.
The engineer says that put him in a chair, handcuffed hands and feet. Then, his beard was shaved supplement.
- It is on our Torah, which is our bible, which is banned you destroy part of his beard. According to Kabbalah, the mystical part of Judaism through the beard, we receive divine blessings - explains the rabbi.
Were also cut off the curls he kept since birth, and symbolizing devotion to God.
- In some camps, the humiliation they did with the Orthodox Jews was to cut his beard and mock them. I see this as an anti-Semitic act, an isolated act but an act of disrespect and humiliation to him - says the rabbi.
- I feel a great shame. I sit in my house without leaving for a year until my beard grow - says the engineer.
According to the Secretariat of Penitentiary Administration, the prisoners are treated in a standardized manner and have the beard and hair cut. With respect to American, the Secretariat also explained that his beard was very long, at the navel.
In a statement, the Secretariat reported that there was no physical aggression, moral or psychological, but that will investigate the case properly.
- It is a standard procedure, but that it contains exceptions. These agents have practiced some crimes, such as abuse of authority and certainly the crime of racism, and practice to encourage prejudice against religion, belief and ethnicity - said the lawyer Augusto de Arruda Botelho.
This is the same opinion of Judge Sergio Mazina Martins, human rights expert and president of the Brazilian Institute of Criminal Sciences (IBCCrim).
- You want to prevent the individual to have a certain beard, a certain hair, when in fact it makes him part of their culture and their own religious beliefs - points.
Now released, the engineer uses fake beard. He hopes the court will decide whether to wait for the progress of the process in Germany, where he says live.
- I want to go home. I hope they do not do this anymore to Jews who want to keep his beard - he says.