Rabbi Dunin Reports of Eli Hecht’s Horrors in Spain


eli-hechtRabbi Yehuda Dunin made a trip to Spain to meet with Rabbi Eli Hecht, who has remained incarcerated in a Spanish jail since his arrest at the Madrid airport after he was found with 4 kilos of cocaine, having been duped into transporting a package without knowing of its true contents. Rabbi Dunin is one of the major activists working on securing Hecht’s freedom.

The visit comes after that of Rabbi Yosef Gafni and a number of visits paid by Madrid’s chief rabbi.

Upon his return to Israel, Rabbi Dunin relayed the horrifying conditions under which Hecht is being held, adding, “Eli needs many, many prayers and chapters of Tehilim (to be said in his behalf)…”

It has been 3 months since Rabbi Eli Hecht was imprisoned. His conditions are harsh and he is not surrounded by any Jews.

“Eli knows of the extensive activities being conducted for his release, and the Chabad community’s readiness to help simply warms his heart,” Dunin said, adding, “But his situation will require Tefilos…”

The community has been asked to pray and give charity in the merit of Eliyahu ben Rachel.

Those wanting to help the release efforts can call Rabbi Dunin at +972 544263763.

Alone in his cell, with no co-religionists in his midst, Hecht’s mood is for the most part sad. Letters that were sent to him lifted his spirits in the darkness of jail.

Mail can be sent through zeev@crombie.com or forwarded directly to the prison:

Knaan Hecht, Aliyahu


{David Yisraeli-Chabad Info/Matzav.com}


  1. END OF STORY: Do not take bags from anyone, UNLESS you search and check through each item. Your life depends on it, have your ‘friend’ send the stuff via mail or US post.

  2. oy its awful situation.. but why would he take package not knowing contents? who doesnt know that you dont do that? the 3 boys in japan story is not enough of message. you wrote duped>> what does that mean??

  3. Let me guess the story being told. He was approached by someone, probably a jew, who so nicely and insistently asked him to take a package. Being a wonderful person, he cheerfully agreed only to be shocked absolutely stunned to find out that it was drugs.

  4. life is getting harder and harder.
    these stories are getting every day more common. or those traffiking human organs or babies.
    may Hashem have rachmunes on us.

  5. How can someone accept a package weighing FOUR KILOS for carriage across an international frontier without asking what it contained?

  6. the question here is did he know the person who gave him the package, if he did how well did he know him , for how long who in the world would do this to another yid you got to be a monster to do this to youre friend

  7. Rabbi Hecht was a steady guest at that home for the last couple of years. His host seemed frum and honest. “such a nice man” Hachnosas Orchim in the highest callibere. On the last day his host asked him for a small tova. To take a package weighing less than 1 1/2 pounds.

    Stop complaining and crittisizing, and start caring for a fellow Jew trapped into this mess be gratefull it didn’t happen to you.

  8. At this point, the message is clear. If you take a package, it is YOUR achrayus. Personally, if I hear another story about this, I am ignoring it.

  9. “He didn’t know.”

    Why didn’t he know not to take anything from anyone else?

    We try to shield ourselves from all kinds of things that we deem too dangerous for our human minds. Children and teens are especially shielded from “real world” situations such as drug abuse, alcohol abuse, addictions, etc. which occur in our own communities. Then when there is c”v a problem with our own kids, it becomes hidden because we don’t want to hurt their chances of getting a good shidduch.

    In the meantime many if not all these kids and teens hear about and know everything that goes on in the world. They know a lot more than you think. Probably more than you know!

  10. What happened to the low life who gave him the package? Is he walking around scott free? Is he allowed into Shul? Is he being honored by any Mossad?

  11. If someone asks you to take a package, tell him you’ll only do it, if he opens it in front of you and you can clearly see what it is. Otherwise don’t.

  12. #12 i thank you for reporting important part of story. it still seems fishy…. they didnt even discuss what he is sending in hat package? that guy is a creep and of course you feel bad for eli. but ppl have to be so careful!! ya know at the airports the announcements actually the 1000 announcements bout not tot taking packages. those are talking to ppl who wanna be nice. nice and kind doesnt mean stupid!! its a middah which is a measure. exactly that sometimes the right thing is dont give dont be “nice”. in meantime lets be mispallel that he be freed and learn to be careful in future

  13. R’Hecht has elderly parents living in the United States and all his children are unmarried.

    He traveled to Costa Rica on a weeklong fundraising mission. Arriving in San Jose, the capital of the Central American republic, he spent most of his time at the shul where he met a stranger — a Jewish man whom members of the community said was a regular who came daily to shul and was a shomer Shabbos.

    The man gave Hecht a hefty donation and offered him lodging in his home for the duration of his stay. He also took him around to donors to help him gather donations for the soup kitchen, called Eishel Binyamin.

    Before Hecht’s scheduled departure to his home in Israel last Wednesday, which included a short stopover in Madrid, his host asked him if he could take a suitcase for delivery to a woman in Madrid.

    Although Hecht was slightly suspicious of the suitcase’s contents, his host calmed him down.

    “You have nothing to worry about,” he said, telling him to open the valise and check out what was in it.

    Hecht opened the suitcase, saw some women’s clothes strewn in it and agreed to take it. He was to go to the main shul in Madrid where a woman would pick it up, he was told.

    Arriving at Madrid’s Barajas International Airport last Wednesday, he apparently was stopped and his suitcase was checked. He was stunned to discover “a large quantity” of cocaine hidden within its folds and was arrested.