Family of Yosef Bando Livid After Sha’ah Tovah Publishes Interview


japan-bochurim1The publication of an interview conducted with Yosef Bando, the youngest of the three bochurim arrested in Japan who is now in Eretz Yisroel serving the duration of his sentence in an Israeli jail, has had negative ramifications for the young bochur. The interview, an exchange between Yosef and Rav Yitzchok Dovid Grossman, rov of Migdal Ha’emek, was published in Sha’ah Tovah, first in Hebrew and now in English. The head of the prison where Yosef is incarcerated, however, summoned Yosef after he learned of the interview and stated that Yosef’s rights to visits and time off could be severely limited for breaching the conditions of detention by giving the interview.

Yosef, however, never formally gave an interview, and family members are livid that the publication of statements made by the bochur could potentially hurt him.

In the interview, Yosef, in conversation with Rav Grossman, related his feelings upon returning to Israel and the horror he experienced the past two years. He spoke about the isolation, the lonliness, the lack of food, being jailed with criminals and more.

Just several hours after the magazine first hit the newsstands several weeks ago here in Eretz Yisroel, Yosef was called to the prison warden and told that granting an interview was against detention rules.

“Why not ask us before publishing the interview?” exclaimed a brother of Yosef. “Are they not aware that much sensitivity is needed with a prisoner who has been transferred to a foreign prison?”

According to the family, Yosef called from a pay phone that morning in jail and wept over the punishment imposed upon him for allegedly granting an interview.

 {Yair Israel}


  1. There is much that needs explaining here. Was Rav Grossman acting as a journalist, when he requested an interview with Yosef Bando? Or did Bando believe he was speaking in confidence with a Rov (for counseling, sympathy, chizuk), and never knew that it was an “interview” subject to publication? Or, in this family’s continued alleged naiveté, did they hope that a published interview with the Rov would garner public sympathy prior to a campaign for early release — and are now upset because the plan backfired? Hopefully Rov Grossman will shed some light on this.

  2. the whole interview was poorly done and not even worth reading & never mind writing.

    are they perhaps looking for attention ?????

  3. This young boy and family needs direction on what are and how to follow whatever the Israeli prison regulations are.