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New York man admits role in scheme to extort religious divorce through violence

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NEWARK, New Jersey — A Brooklyn man characterized by the FBI as an enforcer has pleaded guilty to taking part in a plan to use violence to force a Jewish man to give his wife a religious divorce.

Sholom Shuchat pleaded guilty in federal court in Newark on Monday to traveling in interstate commerce to commit an act of violence. The crime carries a maximum 20-year prison sentence.

He was one of several men, including two rabbis, who were arrested last October.

The FBI used undercover agents to pose as a woman seeking a religious divorce and her brother who was allegedly willing to pay for the husband to be kidnapped.

Shuchat and the others allegedly drove to Middlesex County where they thought they would encounter the husband, but instead were arrested.

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