Two Israelis arrested in Spain facing drug smuggling rap


(JTA) — Two Israeli men arrested in Spain for drug possession are expected to be indicted on smuggling charges.

The men, aged 22 and 23, were arrested earlier this month while driving a car that contained a large amount of illegal drugs toward a border crossing, the Israeli news website reported Monday. One suspect is from Jerusalem and the other lives in Safed. Both are followers of the Breslov Hasidic movement.

The suspects, who were not named, are awaiting their indictment for attempted drug smuggling, Walla reported. The report did not say what kind of drug they were trying to smuggle or how much was found. News of the arrest first reached Israel on Sunday, according to the report.

People who know the suspects told Walla that they had been set up by someone who asked them to drive the car across the border and “took advantage of their naivete.”

Several businessmen from the Breslov community with contacts in Spain are working to have the two suspects released, according to Walla, which also reported that Spain-based activists from the Chabad Hasidic movement are in contact with the suspects.

In 2008, Japanese authorities arrested three Israeli seminary students with 90,000 Ecstasy pills in their possession. They were released in 2012 following intensive lobbying by the heads of several haredi Orthodox movements.

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