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Jewish Journal

Reputed Israeli crime boss extradited from California to Israel

by Tom Tugend

November 20, 2013 | 2:18 pm

Itzhak Abergil, center, escorted by Israeli forces at Ben Gurion airport, in Israel, on Jan. 12, 2011. Photo by Israeli Police

Itzhak Abergil, center, escorted by Israeli forces at Ben Gurion airport, in Israel, on Jan. 12, 2011. Photo by Israeli Police

Reputed Israeli crime boss Itzhak Abergil, currently incarcerated in federal prison in Lompoc, Calif. will be extradited to Israel to serve the remaining half of his 10-year sentence in his home country.

Abergil, 45, pleaded guilty in May 2012 to participating in a large-scale Ecstasy distribution ring, whose members killed an accomplice in Sherman Oaks.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Suzanne H. Segal signed papers on Monday, Nov. 18, authorizing Abergil's transfer to Israel, expected to take place in about three weeks.

In the original 77-page, 32-count indictment, federal prosecutors in Los Angeles charged that Itzhak Abergil, his brother Meir Abergil, and their associates ran one of the largest rings importing narcotics into the United States, working with two other drug syndicates, the Jerusalem Network and one California’s San Fernando Valley.

Initially, the Abergil brothers and an associate were extradited from Israel to the United States in early 2011, an action rarely approved by Israeli courts.

In this case, U.S. officials agreed that if the defendants were found guilty, they would not face the death penalty and would serve their sentences in Israeli jails.

The Los Angeles police department has been concerned with Israeli criminals in the city since the 1970s. “Israeli crime here tends to be quite sophisticated and hard to track,” said Captain Greg Hall, commander of the department’s Major Crimes Division, in an earlier interview.

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