Messianic Jew Gets 3 Years for Desecrating 300 Graves

From Times Wire Services

A court Sunday sentenced a messianic Jew to three years in prison after he confessed to desecrating more than 300 Jewish graves in hopes that Arabs would be blamed.

David Goldner, 41, was convicted last week of spraying anti-Semitic graffiti, some calling for the extermination of Jews, on gravestones in Haifa-area cemeteries earlier this month. Another Jewish suspect in the case is undergoing psychiatric observation.

Police have said the vandalism was motivated by a hope that the desecration would unify Jews to fight perceived Arab threats against Israel’s existence. Police described both Israelis as intelligent and highly educated men who joined a messianic sect several years ago.

Goldner, an engineer from the Haifa suburb of Kiryat Motzkin, told reporters after his sentencing, “I did it in order to enlighten the Jewish nation and to unite it against its enemies,” Israel Radio reported.


Goldner said he did not intend to cause damage to the graves.