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Teen Who Threatened Jewish Centers Charged

Teen Charged In Relation To Threats Made To Florida JCCs DOJ

The U.S. Justice Department charged the Israeli-American teen arrested in Israel with making threats against Jewish community centers.

Federal officials on Friday filed charges against an 18-year-old Israeli-American for hundreds of hoax bomb threats this year that had put U.S. Jewish institutions on edge. Kadar also allegedly made a call regarding a false emergency at a private home in Georgia.

Kadar also has a speech impediment that matched one observed in recordings of the threat calls, USA authorities said.

The waves of threats forced widespread evacuations, including of centers with young children, and prompted concern among Jewish leaders about a resurgence of anti-Semitism.

Online federal court records in Florida showed no attorney listed for Kadar.

Scene of Jewish community center that received a threat.

Kadar made "at least 245 threatening phone calls" in early 2017, mostly to JCCs and other Jewish institutions, according to a criminal complaint filed in the Middle District of Florida.

While Israeli authorities were conducting surveillance in Kadar's neighborhood, they noticed a large parabolic antenna connected to his apartment unit.

About noon on January 5, for example, Kadar, whom the Israeli police identified as Jewish, allegedly called the Maimonides Hebrew Day School in Fort Myers, Fla., and said there was a "C-4 bomb" in the school and that shortly, shrapnel from the bomb would be directed into the heads of the Jewish children.

An Israeli teenager has been accused of targeting Jewish schools and community centres in the U.S. with more than 200 threatening phone calls that contained graphic descriptions of children's deaths along with hoax bomb threats.

"This kind of behavior is not a prank, and it isn't harmless", said FBI Director James B. Comey. "It scares innocent people, disrupts entire communities, and expends limited law enforcement resources". They say they analyzed the calls and started to detect patterns in the time of day, methodology, and phrases Kadar used - all of which helped them piece together his identity. Some said that the rise of Donald Trump as United States president encouraged the extreme right and emboldened hate groups. The FBI says that in a February 20, 2017, bomb-threat call Kadar stated "in a short time, a large number of "Jew children" were going to have their heads blown off from the shrapnel".

The arrest of the Jewish teenager over dozens of the threats complicated the debate, however.

"After I saw documents related to the suspect's past, I chose to ask his parents to bring a private psychiatrist to the prison, in order to help clarify that he is not fit for detention", Nir told Channel 10.

"He's autistic", she said.