A federal judge in Manhattan sentenced Rabbi Milton Balkany to four years in jail for trying to extort $4 million for his school, Bais Yaakov of Borough Park, from billionaire Steven Cohen’s SAC Capital, using supposedly damaging information he obtained from an inmate at a federal prison where he served as a spiritual adviser.
“My intent was 100 percent pure,” Rabbi Balkany told The Jewish Week In a Feb., 2010 interview shortly after his arrest. “I was trying to get someone out of jail. These people were in a lot of trouble and tried to sacrifice me on the altar.”
The rabbi has been active in fund raising for Republican politicians, has lobbied in Washington for several causes and frequently gave benedictions at political events.