Keynote Speaker Yitzchak Mirilashvili to Speak Before Thousands in Suffern at Rockland Community College

Kinus Hashluchim Banquet Keynote Speaker Announced

The organizers of the Kinus Hashluchim  have announced the Keynote speaker for this years banquet. The following press release was sent out:

We are honored to share that Reb Yitzchak Mirilashvili will be the guest keynote speaker at this year’s Gala Banquet.

Through his Keren Meromim Foundation he supports dozens of revolutionary projects spreading Torah learning, Chessed and outreach while supporting hundreds of Shluchim in Eretz Yisroel and throughout the world.

The Mirilashvlili family have become exemplary partners to Shluchim and communities around the world, committed to perpetuating and expanding the Rebbe’s vision accross the globe.

Yitzchak Mirilashvili is an Israeli-Georgian billionaire businessman and philanthropist, based in Russia and Israel. Mirilashvili’s family businesses include real estate, construction of shopping malls, casino chains, petroleum industry, diamond and renewable energy sectors. He was known as the youngest billionaire of Israel, following the sale of his shares in a popular news site for $1.12 Billion.

He is also a very active contributor to many Jewish organizations.

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Yitzchak Mirilashvili, Suffern, New York and a Little Bit of History:The Deri

Among those investigated in the Deri affair: billionaire Mikhael Mirilashvili and his son

“Two of the businessmen questioned on Monday in the Aryeh Deri affair are Mikhael Mirilashvili and his son Yitzhak (Viatcheslav), the controlling shareholder of Channel 20. Among the suspicions examined are large sums of money being transferred to the association of Minister Deri’s wife, Yaffa.
Mikhael Mirilashvili was born in 1960 in Kulashi, Georgia. He immigrated to Israel in 1995 and has lived intermittently in Herzliya and St. Petersburg. Mirilashvili was certified as a pediatrician in the Soviet Union, but after receiving his license, which occurred at the same time as the fall of the Communist regime, he switched to business.”

“Mirilashvili’s father was kidnapped on a highway in 2000 while driving his Lexus car by a group posing as traffic police. The kidnappers apparently did not know who they kidnapped, and did not notice the logo of the family casino company on the license plate. Two days later, the father, Moshe Mikhael, was safely returned. Two weeks later, the bodies of two of those responsible for the kidnapping were found dead, along with their girlfriends and driver.”
“Russian authorities arrested Mikhael Mirilashvili and accused him of involvement in the kidnapping. In 2003, he was sent to eight years in prison. Mirilashvili constantly claimed that the central testimony was motivated by revenge and six years after his arrest he was released from Russian prison. In 2013, Mirilashvili’s fortune was estimated at over $2 billion.”

….

Mirilashvili, who is also head of real estate company Rothstein, made headlines in 2013 when he sold his stake in VK shares for $1.12 billion, which made him one of the wealthiest Russian Jews at the age of 28.
Others questioned in the Deri affair is Moshe Haba, 66, a well-to-do businessman, former deputy head of the Finance Ministry’s budget department, who served in senior public positions, including as a member of Bezeq’s board of directors and chairman, chairman of Pelephone and chairman of Bezeq International. He is affiliated with the ultra-Orthodox party Shas and was a member of the Gronau Committee, which examined the conditions of competition in the communications market. In the last few years, he has been investing in real estate, and acquired, among other things, five percent of the Jerusalem Economic Real Estate Company and the old post office building in Jerusalem.
Another suspect, Erez Malul, a young Jerusalem lawyer affiliated with Shas, is close to the Shas spiritual leader, Rabbi David Yosef (son of the late spiritual leader of the movement, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef). After the last elections, he began working in the Ministry of Religious Services—first as the Minister’s Advisor on Legislative Affairs and today, as the CEO’s chief of staff.

Mikhail Mirilashvili

Russian Jewish businessman fights verdict

Russian Jewish leader Mikhail Mirilashvili. ()

MOSCOW, Aug. 21 (JTA) — The stiff prison sentence handed down to Russian businessman and Jewish leader Mikhail Mirilashvili is sending shock waves through Russia’s second-largest Jewish community. On Aug. 1, the Leningrad District Military Court in St. Petersburg sentenced the local business magnate and Jewish philanthropist to 12 years in a high-security prison. Mirilashvili, 43, has spent the last 30 months in jail on charges of creating a criminal gang, kidnapping and attempted murder. The verdict, handed down the same day as the sentencing, cleared the businessman of the attempted murder charge but found him guilty of trespassing, kidnapping and detaining persons against their will. The court acquitted Mirilashvili’s six suspected accomplices after prosecutors failed to establish their role in the murder of two alleged abductors of Mirilashvili’s father, Mikhail Mirilashvili, Sr. After the sentencing, St. Petersburg’s chief rabbi, Menachem Mendel Pevzner, told JTA that Mirilashvili’s “family, friends and the whole Jewish community are devastated.” Some observers said the long jail term was disproportionate to the gravity of the crimes. The episode that sparked Mirilashvili’s arrest followed the August 2000 abduction of his father, also a businessman, who was released two days after his kidnapping in central St. Petersburg. The identities of the abductors were not established. But months later, when two ethnic Georgians were gunned down in broad daylight outside the Astoria, Mirilashvili’s posh St. Petersburg hotel, police quickly pointed the finger at the younger Mirilashvili. “I found this quite strange that for the people who had allegedly organized the crime, the court hasn’t found enough proof of guilt, and for him,” — meaning Mirilashvili — “it has,” Pevzner said. Meanwhile, Mirilashvili insists he is innocent. Jewish leaders following the case said the stiff punishment came as a complete surprise. “Those who were well-informed suspected a guilty verdict, but when a few minutes before the sentence was pronounced someone said quietly, ’12 years,’ I thought this was a bad joke,” said Eugenia Lvova, executive director of the local Russian Jewish Congress chapter and president of Adain Lo, the St. Petersburg Jewish Family Center. Mirilashvili has served as president of the RJC’s St. Petersburg branch since the group’s founding in 1996. He retained his post after he was imprisoned in January of 2001. The group says that despite his imprisonment, Mirilashvili still remains the largest local supporter of the Jewish community. Last year, the RJC raised $350,000 in St. Petersburg, according to the group’s 2002 annual report. RJC president Yevgeny Satanovsky said most of the money had been a donation from Mirilashvili. “Despite his imprisonment, he remains one of the most affluent people in St. Petersburg,” Satanovsky said. A native of the former Soviet republic of Georgia, Mirilashvili is said to have a wide range of business interests in St. Petersburg, including casinos, real estate, retail, entertainment and hotel businesses. The businessman, who has never been shy about his Jewish background, holds Russian and Israeli citizenship and used to divide his time between St. Petersburg and Tel Aviv. His 18-year-old son, Slava, recently graduated from an English-language high school in Israel and will attend Tufts University near Boston this fall. Mirilashvili spokesman Dmitry Miropolsky said in an interview that the guilty verdict and the tough sentence proved that the “target of this hunt is specifically Mikhail Mirilashvili and no one else.” Alexander Afanasyev, Mirilashvili’s defense lawyer, called the sentence “enormously unjust, enormously severe.” Mirilashvili’s defense filed a 37-page appeal to a higher court on Aug. 11. “I hope the high court will reconsider” the verdict, Pevzner said. For their part, prosecutors asked that Mirilashvili get a 15-year sentence. Jewish leaders in St. Petersburg have said repeatedly that they didn’t believe anti-Semitism had a role in the guilty verdict or the sentence. But Mirilashvili’s supporters — including Jewish leaders — believe the case might have been the result of competition inside the business community or the result of a payoff or pressure from public figures who wanted to get rid of Mirilashvili. Satanovsky said the criminal case probably represents the “old war of oligarchs,” as Russia’s largest business leaders are often called. Mirilashvili’s lawyers said the case also highlighted the high level of corruption within the city’s law enforcement system. According to Miropolsky, Mirilashvili’s final statement to the court on July 25 alleged that the city’s deputy prosecutor, Boris Salmaksov, was demanding a bribe of $1 million to close the case. Salmaksov categorically denied the accusation. A week before his sentencing, Mirilashvili became embroiled in a public argument with another powerful Russian Jew, exiled tycoon Boris Berezovsky — who in the mid-1990s unsuccessfully tried to take over a local television station Mirilashvili ran. In an open letter published July 24 in the Moscow newspaper Kommersant Daily, Berezovsky accused Mirilashvili of being involved in an underhanded deal in the early 1990´s to privatize a St. Petersburg-based alcohol producer. Berezovsky alleged that Mirilashvili was helped in the deal by President Vladimir Putin, then head of the St. Petersburg Administration’s External Affairs Committee. Berezovsky called Mirilashvili a “criminal authority.” Mirilashvili responded with an open letter in the daily Izvestiya a few days later accusing Berezovsky of lying. He denied any business dealings with Putin, saying he had never met the future president when he worked in St. Petersburg. He also denied accusations by Berezovsky and others that he has ties to the criminal underworld. In the same letter, Mirilashvili accused Berezovsky of changing his religion to Orthodox Christianity after Berezovsky failed in an alleged attempt to become a leader of the Russian Jewish community. Mirilashvili and his lawyer have asked Jewish leaders not to intervene in the case while his appeal is pending, Lvova said. That decision stems from the understanding that if the Jewish leadership comes out in his defense, the case would acquire a “political dimension,” Lvova said. In his public letter, Mirilashvili wrote, “The norms of the Jewish faith in which I was raised teach: It is not enough when you know yourself that your are honest and clean. You ought to make it clear so that those around you know that you are a decent person.” “Therefore I state it for all to hear that I am not involved in the criminal world ,” he wrote.

 

MIKHAIL (MIKHAEL) MIRASHIVILI

Billionaire unjustly jailed in Russia elected to WJC

Mikhael Mirilashvili, freed in 2009 after imprisonment on trumped-up charges, elected president of the Euro-Asian Jewish Congress.

JTA, 26/07/17 20:00

 

Russian parliament, Moscow White House

Russian parliament, Moscow White House

Thinkstock

Eight years after his release from wrongful imprisonment in Russia, the Israeli billionaire Mikhael Mirilashvili was elected to lead the World Jewish Congress Euro-Asian affiliate, representing communities from Ukraine to Singapore.

Mirilashvili, who had spent eight years in a Russian prison until 2009 on trumped up charges connected to his father’s abduction, was voted president of the Euro-Asian Jewish Congress Monday, the organization said, replacing the Austrian baking magnate Julius Meinl.

Mirilashvili, a 57-year-old physician turned industrialist who was born in the Caucasian republic of Georgia, presented a relatively conservative agenda in his acceptance speech delivered in Ramat Gan during the general assembly meeting of the Euro-Asian Jewish Congress.

“We need to strengthen the connection of the Diaspora with Israel and help to reduce assimilation, educating the younger generation, based on the values ​​and traditions of the Jewish people,” said Mirilashvili.

The dark-haired, blue-eyed Mirilashvili is one of Israel’s wealthiest citizens, according to Haaretz. The owner of an estimated fortune of $3 billion, his leadership role at the helm of the EAJC may, especially if it is coupled with the allocation of new funding for projects, reposition the organization as a more influential player in Jewish community politics than it has been in recent years.

Mikhael Mirilashvili’s son, Yitzhak, is the owner of Israel’s Channel 20, a right-leaning television channel in Israel.

Mikhael Mirilashvili had spent eight years in jail in Russia on charges deemed false by the to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

In August 2000, his father, Moshe Mirilashvili, a prominent member of the Jewish community who served as president of the Congress of Georgian Jewry, was kidnapped in broad daylight on a main road in St. Petersburg. He was released just two days later, and a month and a half after the abduction, the bodies of two of the kidnappers were found.

Michael Mirilashvili was arrested and charged with several offenses, including attempted murder. In August 2003, he was convicted of kidnapping and lesser charges but acquitted on the charge of attempted murder, and sentenced to 12 years in prison. His imprisonment was seen as part of a larger phenomenon is Russia under President Vladimir Putin, whose government has been accused of using the judiciary to knock out critics and other players deemed replaceable.

Mirilashvili’s legal team fought his sentencing, calling it “enormously unjust” and “enormously severe,” as well as false and motivated by vendettas of powerful business rivals. In 2004, Mirilashvili appealed arguing that his rights had been violated and that he did not receive a fair trial. He was vindicated in 2009. He moved his home base to Israel, where he continued his business activities in Russia and began investing heavily in Israel and elsewhere. He has donates millions of dollars to Jewish organizations, including the ZAKA emergency service,

Michael Mirilashvili was born in Georgia in 1960 and moved to St. Petersburg as a teenager, where he studied medicine, specializing in pediatrics, before turning to focus on business in the 1980s. His family’s wealth came from real estate, but he branched out into areas including not only petroleum and diamonds, but also television, new media, renewable energy and pharmaceuticals, according to Haaretz.

 

Four New Mikvaos Open Across Russia

By Tamar Runyan, Chabad.org

The past month saw the unprecedented opening of four new Jewish ritual baths across Russia.

Located in Moscow, Kostroma, Orenburg and Bryansk, the facilities were constructed under the supervision of the office of Russian Chief Rabbi Berel Lazar and with the financial help of philanthropist Lev Leviev’s Ohr Avner Foundation, Mikhail Mirilashvili, Yitzchak Mishaan, the Alashvilli and Shamilashvilli families, and the Rabbinical Centre of Europe.

The new bath in Moscow was built alongside the Darkei Shalom synagogue run by Chabad-Lubavitch Rabbi Dovid and Shulamit Karpov in the capital’s Otradnoye district.

In Kostroma, meanwhile, crews rebuilt a facility reportedly used by the Sixth Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn, of righteous memory, during his exile there in 1927.

It had been sealed by Communist authorities and was largely forgotten until its discovery by local Chief Rabbi Nison Ruppo 10 years ago.

The project in Orenburg was directed by Chabad-Lubavitch Rabbi Goel Myers, while Chabad-Lubavitch Rabbi Menachem Zakles supervised the Bryansk construction.

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