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Stolen Torah scrolls have new homes

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Two Torah scrolls rescued from thieves were given to the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, which has found new homes for them.

The scrolls, each about 150 years old, were given to the JDC by the Manhattan District Attorney’s office in a handover ceremony Tuesday at the Museum of Jewish Heritage in Manhattan.

They will be given to synagogues in Sofia, Bulgaria, and Belgrade, Serbia, in time for use on the Jewish holiday of Simchat Torah.

The scrolls will help replace Torah scrolls stolen 10 years ago from the Sofia Synagogue, the JDC said. In Belgrade, it will be the first kosher scroll in use since the dissolution of the former Yugoslavia when Jewish community assets were divided.

Recovered more than a decade ago from two thieves who were fencing stolen Torah scrolls, the scrolls are two of 10 for which prosecutors were unable to find the rightful owners, according to the New York Daily News. 

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