2019-10-31 11:20:00

Federation of Jewish Communities president calls sentence on Israeli traveler caught with hashish in Russia excessive

Moscow, October 31, Interfax - Alexander Boroda, President of the Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia, has described the seven-year sentence on Israeli citizen Naama Issachar who was carrying several grams of hashish in her backpack during a transit trip via Russia as too severe.

"She was charged with possession and contraband of narcotic drugs. This is an excessive sentence, to put it mildly, and we very much hope that the appeal court will reconsider the ruling and will ease her sentence," Boroda said on Instagram.

In the rabbi's opinion, the Israeli citizen "could be let go with a fine."

Prison has never reformed anyone; it does nothing but "ruins lives," he said.

"We believe that people make mistakes out of ignorance or being aware of the law, but there other punitive measures, which do not deprive a person of one's freedom and do not have to be funded by taxpayers. Clearly, the girl has made a mistake, she is not a smuggler, and she was traveling from the place where this [drug] is legal," Boroda said.

Issachar was detained in the transit zone of Moscow's Sheremetyevo Airport on April 9 when she was taking a connecting flight on the way from New Delhi to Tel Aviv. Some 9.6 grams of hashish were found in her backpack.