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New Jersey Corruption Informant Testifies

Syrian Jewish scion Dwek had turned on community

Marc Tracy
January 29, 2010
Rendering of Dwek testifying yesterday.(AP PHOTO)
Rendering of Dwek testifying yesterday.(AP PHOTO)

Solomon Dwek speaks! The man who by wearing a wire helped reveal scandals among the Syrian Jewish elite of Deal, New Jersey—in which he had been a prominent member—as well as numerous Jersey politicians finally took the stand yesterday, in the federal corruption trial of Jersey City’s former deputy mayor. (Among other things, Dwek revealed that his first brush with corruption came as a student at his yeshiva, where his teacher solicited a $50 bribe from him.) This morning, several secret video clips of Dwek’s stings against various Jersey politicians were shown in the Newark courthouse.

Dwek, the son of a prominent Deal rabbi (who has since disowned him), cooperated with the U.S. Justice Department in exchange for a significant plea bargain related to money laundering charges. His work helped net indictments of 44 individuals, including the Syrian Jewish community’s chief rabbi and numerous north Jersey elected officials.

Marc Tracy is a staff writer at The New Republic, and was previously a staff writer at Tablet. He tweets @marcatracy.