Exclusive Photos: Overflow Crowd of Supporters Watch Rubashkin Court Proceedings in South Dakota


rubashkin-courtcase-3[Exclusive photos below.] The trial of R’ Shalom Mordechai Rubashkin, former manager of Postville’s kosher meat plant, began this morning as Yidden across the globe kept him in their tefillos. A large group of Yidden from New York are currently in Sioux City, South Dakota, and are present in the courthouse to show support for R’ Shalom Mordechai. Security at the courthouse was high, with each person required to walk through a metal detector and undergo inspection by a security officer. There was not enough space in the courtroom for the large number of supporters of R’ Shalom Mordechai, so it was arranged for the overflow crowd to be able watch the court proceedings in an adjacent room via video hookup. The photos below were taken at the courthouse this morning.

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“Everyone who knows him, knows him as a great man,” said Eliezer Pinson, 21, who took 24-hour bus ride from Brooklyn to show his support. “People look up to him. He always made time for everyone,” he told the Des Moines Register.

The federal fraud trial is expected to last four to six weeks. Reb Shalom Mordechai faces 91 charges in the first of two trials. The second trial on 72 immigration-related charges will start one week after the first trial ends.

More than 40 men, most in their 20s, huddled around a big-screen television in the spillover room in the courthouse to watch.

Pinson, who learned in Postville for two years, said Reb Shalom Mordechai paid all of his expenses to attend the Yeshiva of Northeast Iowa. Reb Shalom Mordechai’s nephew, Yossi Rubashkin of Brooklyn, sat in quiet prayer for the man “whose door was always open.”

“I’m extremely optimistic about the trial,” Yossi Rubashkin said. “That might not make sense to you. It’s just faith. Faith in God.”

Reb Shalom Mordechai Rubashkin sat quietly with his lawyers, his wife Leah and 10 children behind him. His oldest daughter, Roza, walked the halls cradling an infant.

Shortly before 11 a.m., Leah Rubashkin wandered into the downstairs room filled with supporters. She smiled, waved, and said, “I wanted to see how everyone was doing.”

Day one began with prosecutors and defense lawyers weeding through a pool of 60 potential jurors. The trial, expected to last four to six weeks, was moved from Cedar Rapids to Sioux Falls because of pre-trial publicity.

Assistant U.S. Attorney C.J. Williams named about 80 witnesses that prosecutors might call for their case.

Included on the list was Elizabeth Billmeyer, who worked as the plant’s human resources director; Toby Bensassion, a former comptroller; and two mid-level managers, Juan Carlos Guerrero Espinoza and Martin De La Rosa. All pleaded guilty to lesser charges in the build-up to the trial.

Defense lawyer Guy Cook said his team might call Joe Sarachek, the plant’s bankruptcy trustee; Ron Wahls, Postville schools guidance counselor; and former Agriprocessors spokesman Chaim Abraham.

Lawyers had whittled the jury pool to about 50 as of noon.


Read Matzav.com‘s previous stories on the Rubashkin case at the following links: here, here, here, here, here, and here.  

Please continue to daven for Sholom Mordechai HaLevi ben Rivkah.

{Noam Amdurski-Matzav.com Newscenter/Des Moines Register}


  1. why do you have to say in the zechut of the rebbe! Do you know how many zechusim he has have you not read all the stories and chasadim beyond chasadim that he did. hakadosh boruch hu yismor alav vyishmah kol tefilateunu

  2. I’m scared; it seems like the procecuters are more interested in saving face and procecuting a Jew, than in justice. We must daven for him, and each make one small change in our lives for his zechut.

  3. The major issue here is why is Mr Rubashkin charged with employment violations that no-one in the industry was charged with. On Dec 12, 2006, Federal ICE agents raided Swift beef and pork facilities arresting almost 1300 illegals.
    1) The illegals were not charged with the criminal aggravated identity theft as were the 389 illegals arrested at Rubashkin. (The convictions were all overturned later.)
    2) The CEOs were not personally charged with employment violations as Rubashkin was.
    3) No corporate criminal charges were filed as in the case of Rubashkin.
    4) After the Swift raid the authorities did not continue to look for other charges as in the case of Rubashkin.
    5) All information regarding the Dec 12, 2006 “operation wagon train” raid on Swift was deleted from the ICE.GOV website and replaced with the “Rubashkin… …the largest raid of it’s kind” Even though ICE press releases had previously referred to the 6 facility multi-state Swift raid as “the largest raid of it’s kind.” The information is still available on Swiftraid.org.
    6) Original complaint made allegations about drug production and weapons dealing at the plant, yet no drug sniffing dogs nor BATF agents took part in the raid, demostrating the Govt knew such charges were false in the first place.
    7) The orignal complaint states the informant (informant #7) was denied employment numerous times because he could not provide a valid SSN. He was only hired after presenteing an ICE supplied SSN.

    Readers are urged to write their congressmen to ask why the Jew Rubashkin is being treated differently than the CEO’s of Swift or IFCO, both which had almost 1300 illegals arrested at their respective facilities in 2006, no criminal charges were filed against the corporations or the CEO’s, they paid fines vizehu.
    Find your congressman’s names at: firstgov.gov