Israeli couple convicted of Auschwitz theft named

Moti Posloshani blames "error in judgment" and resigns from senior job with Herzliya municipality.

Auschwitz 311 (photo credit: REUTERS/Kacper Pempel)
Auschwitz 311
(photo credit: REUTERS/Kacper Pempel)
Moti Posloshani, a colonel in the reserves and a senior official in the Herzliya Municipality, and his wife, Dominique, were named Tuesday as the couple convicted last week of stealing mementos from Auschwitz.
Posloshani returned to Israel on Monday and resigned from his role with the Herzliya local government.
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The couple, who are related to Holocaust survivors, were sentenced in Poland to a twoyear suspended jail sentence and a NIS 5,000 fine each.
In an interview given to Israel Radio on Tuesday, Posloshani said, “We apologize. It was an error in judgment.”
He also tried to explain his actions, saying that he took rusted cutlery that he found in the mud with the intention of bringing the items back to Israel and perhaps giving them to Yad Vashem.
He said that the couple “wanted to take them as a memento from a place that holds great significance for us.
We did not take items that were on display, as reported in the media. We found the items in an area where prisoners arrived and were undressed. It looks as though they threw the items away and tried to bury them. We found them in the mud – items that were buried years ago rise to the surface occasionally.”
The couple had been charged earlier last week with the theft of mementos of particular cultural importance, an offense that carries a maximum 10- year jail sentence.
They spent a night in jail after border guards at the airport in Krakow caught them trying to take several Auschwitz artifacts out of the country.
Krakow police spokesman Dariusz Nowak said the couple took nine items – including spoons, knives, scissors and porcelain bottle stoppers – they had found in a room storing prisoner belongings during a visit to Auschwitz, now a museum.