New York, NY, November 9, 2010 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today responded to charges filed against 17 people accused of defrauding the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (the Claims Conference).
The Manhattan U.S. Attorney's Office unsealed criminal charges against 17 employees of the Claims Conference, charging that they approved more than 5,500 fraudulent applications, resulting in $42 million in payouts to applicants that did not qualify for the programs. In exchange, the insiders allegedly kept a portion of the money for themselves.
"We are appalled and dismayed by the sweeping allegations of fraud that apparently victimized needy Holocaust survivors," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "As this case progresses, we hope that it will prove possible to recoup some of the missing funds and actually get them into the hands of those survivors for whom they were intended. For this aging population, the need is as great as it has ever been, and it is profoundly sad that the admirable goals and many positive achievements of the Claims Conference have been tarnished in this way."
Mr. Foxman commended the FBI and the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York for their diligent investigation which uncovered the fraud, also noting what the authorities themselves described as the "extraordinary cooperation" of the Claims Conference in helping expose this tragic scheme.