(JTA) — A federal judge denied a motion for a new trial for former Agriprocessors executive Sholom Rubashkin.
U.S. District Court Chief Judge Linda Reade on Wednesday rejected a motion that accused her of a conflict of interest in Rubashkin’s case. The defense for Rubashkin, a vice president with the kosher meatpacking firm in Iowa, claimed Reade should have recused herself.
According to emergency court papers filed Aug. 5 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Iowa, Reade was involved in preparations for the May 2008 federal immigration raid on the Agriprocessors plant in Postville. The raid led to Rubashkin’s arrest on an array of charges, including the financial fraud for which he ultimately was convicted.
Reade sentenced Rubashkin to 27 years in federal prison last June — two more years than prosecutors demanded.
Rubashkin was convicted in November 2009 on 86 counts of fraud in connection with the Agriprocessors plant.
In the raid on the plant, 389 illegal immigrants, including 31 children, were arrested.
Meanwhile, Rubashkin’s son Mendel celebrated his bar mitzvah earlier this month at an event with hundreds of guests at the Chabad Center of New City in Monsey, N.Y.
Rubashkin addressed the guests via cell phone from the Federal Correctional Institution in Otisville, N.Y., reported Chabad.info, a news blog not associated with the central Chabad-Lubavitch institutions.