NEW YORK (Oct. 12)
The New York Board of Rabbis asked the Soviet Government today to extend clemency to Arkady Grinberg, a Russian Jew who was sentenced to death in Moscow last May for alleged “economic crimes,” Although the Moscow Supreme Court recently granted Grinberg’s appeal against the death sentence, it is now up to President Anastas Mifcoyan to approve the court’s decision.
Grinberg was first arrested two years ago and charged with “consorting with Israelis” and involvement in economic crimes. The first charge was dropped at the end of 1963 but he was convicted as an economic offender last May. Grinberg is 50 years old and is a member of Moscow’s Central Synagogue. In its plea for clemency which was voiced in the form of a telegram to the Soviet Ambassador, Anatoly F. Dobrynin, the Board of Rabbis said: “We do not presume to pass judgment on his innocence or guilt. We ask for compassion as a merciful and humanitarian act.