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Report Soviet Jew Who Sought Permission to Emigrate to Go on Trial

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Another Jew who applied for permission to emigrate to Israel will go on trial in Leningrad tomorrow morning, according to a report received here today by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency. He was identified as Igor Borisovich Borisov, 42, who allegedly has been under arrest for several months. The report coming out of Leningrad but not immediately confirmed, said the charges against him are not known and that his trial will be held in secret. The claim that a new Leningrad trial is imminent followed a report late yesterday that chief prosecutor R. Rudenko has demanded the death penalty for two of the defendants in the current Leningrad trial on attempted hijacking charges and prison terms of five to 15 years for the others, all but two of them Jews. The information received here today said that Borisov and his wife had applied some time ago for exit visas to go to Israel and were subsequently called into KGB (secret police) headquarters for interrogation. According to the report, they were waylaid by roughnecks on their way home but when police intervened, it was Borisov whom they arrested. According to this unconfirmed report, Borisov was released the same evening but was re-arrested a month later and has been held in jail ever since.

The report that death penalties have been asked in the hijack case has been confirmed by Western news sources. The defendants singled out for capitol punishment were identified as Maj. Mark Dymshitz, a former pilot and Edvard Kuznetsov. Dymshitz allegedly confessed that he master-minded the plot to hijack a Soviet airliner at Leningrad’s Smolny Airport last June and fly to Finland whence the Jewish passengers could make for Israel. According to reports he told the three-man court that he planned the hijack to escape Soviet anti-Semitism. Kuznetsov reportedly told the court that he is a Jew although his passport identifies him as an ethnic Russian. His wife, Silva Zalmanson Kuznetsov and two of her brothers are also on trial. According to today’s report, prosecutor Rudenko asked 15 years at hard labor for Josef Mendelovich and Yuri Fedorov; 14 years for Alexander Murzhenko; 13 years for Leib Khanokh; 12 years each for Boris Pestner, Anatoly Altman and Isaac Zalmanson; ten years for Silva Kuznetzov, wife of Edvard Kuznetzov and five years for Mendel Bodnia. Fedorov and Murszhenko are non-Jews. Another defendant, Wolf Zalmanson, is reportedly under court martial.

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