Suspect in attack on Poland's chief rabbi arrested

33-year-old tied to neo-Nazi groups confessed to attacking the Jewish leader.

poland rabbi 298 ap (photo credit: AP)
poland rabbi 298 ap
(photo credit: AP)
Police on Wednesday arrested a man suspected of attacking Poland's chief rabbi last month, describing him as a 33-year-old tied to neo-Nazi groups who confessed to attacking the Jewish leader. The arrest comes nearly five weeks after Michael Schudrich, a New Yorker who became the nation's chief rabbi in 2004, was punched and attacked with what appeared to be pepper spray on a street in central Warsaw on May 27. Schudrich was not injured in the attack. The suspect, identified only as Karol G., in keeping with Polish privacy laws, was arrested Wednesday morning outside his Warsaw home, and identified shortly after that by Schudrich in a police lineup, national police chief Marek Bienkowski said at a news conference. "He confessed to the attack and was recognized by the victim," Bienkowski said. Bienkowski said that the perpetrator was "tied to Nazi organizations" and had a history of soccer-related hooliganism, but refused say more because of an ongoing investigation against him. If convicted, the suspect, identified by police as a "manual laborer," could go to prison for three to five months, Bienkowski. Jacek Kedziora, a police investigator from Warsaw police, said police used camera footage from the area where the attack took place and leads from witnesses to track down the perpetrator.