Israeli Diamond Dealer Slain in Johannesburg
Menu JTA Search

Israeli Diamond Dealer Slain in Johannesburg

A well-known Israeli diamond dealer was shot dead outside the downtown Johannesburg Diamond Center as he left the building.

Michel Rubinek, 50, of Rubinek Diamonds, was attacked Monday evening by five men, one of whom was thought to be Israeli, according to reports. The gunmen opened fire from two cars with AK-47s and 9mm pistols.

Rubinek, who was hit with three bullets, returned fire and hit one of his attackers before dying on the scene. The diamond dealer was not robbed and nothing was taken from the scene.

Rubinek had lived in South Africa since 1990.

Jason Canes, a close family friend, said the suspects were apprehended later in the nearby suburb of Norwood.

Shocked mourners gathered Tuesday in the Rubinek home in the suburb of Victory Park before the funeral at West Park Jewish Cemetery.

“The saddest thing is that he left behind a 6-month-old baby, Julian, and the child’s mother, Lee,” said Canes.

Rubinek had five children from a previous marriage.

Founding Funders

The digitization of the JTA Archive would not have been possible without the generous support of the following donors:
  • The Gottesman Fund
  • Righteous Persons Foundation
  • Charles H. Revson Foundation
  • Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, in honor of Norma Spungen
  • George S. Blumenthal
  • Grace and Scott Offen Charitable Fund