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Deceptive Letter Threatens Kingston Ave. Shops with $10,000 Fine

Crown Heights food establishments carrying the CHK Hechsher received a startling letter last week, threatening that if they did not switch to the ‘Braun Hechsher’ they may face a $10,000 fine for illegally using the CHK logo.

The letter asserts that the threat is backed by a temporary restraining order issued by the courts, but makes no mention of the fact that the order in question has been rescinded – leaving R. Braun and his cohorts to face a contempt of court hearing and potential punishment for their actions.

Last week, a four page letter signed by Michoel Chazan on a letterhead from the Vaad Hakashrus of Crown Heights, warned storeowners that their Kashurs certification from the CHK is no longer valid and that they must immediately switch over to the Hechsher that is being offered by R. Yosef Braun. It further directed that payments be redirected and that the changeovers must be completed within 10 days.

The letter refers to a Temporary Restraining Order issued on July 12, 2013 by Hon. Lawrence Knipel, in which Rabbi Avrohom Osdoba and company are restrained from acting as the Vaad Hakashrus, transferring its assets, or distributing salaries to its employees.

The issuing of the TRO was exclusively thanks to trickery and deception on the parts of R. Braun and his cohorts, including: Yaakov Herzog, Joseph Boruch Spielman, Yaakov Spritzer, Michoel Chazan and Mottel Chein, all of whom were ‘appointed’ to various positions of the ‘new’ Vaad Hakashrus.

The TRO was granted after a hearing that took place on Friday, July 12. Following the proceedings, the lawyers representing Rabbi Osdoba left the courthouse while the lawyers for R. Braun remained behind and requested the TRO.

After hearing about this TRO, the lawyers for Rabbi Osdoba requested an emergency hearing, which was held the following Monday, July 15th. The TRO was immediately vacated and voided.

This past Friday, August 9, storeowners began receiving letters ‘informing them of the upcoming changes’ to the Vaad Hakashrus. (See below)

In light of the letter, the Hon. Debra Silber issued a Preliminary Injunction and a Contempt Hearing against R. Braun and company for attempting to disrupt the Kashrus operations, and for falsely using the courts in an attempt to deceive the public. (See below)

The hearing is scheduled for tomorrow, August 15, 2013, in the Supreme Court of the State of New York at 360 Adams Street in Brooklyn.

CrownHeights.info will update its readers with the results of the hearing when they are made available.

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  • 1. Our Children Our Community wrote:

    And we wonder why our children and community are having the issues they do….. When are our community Rabbeim and so called leaders going to resolve their issues? Wishing all a k’siva v’chasima tova!

    • 2. CHLEAKS.COM wrote:

      Just shut up!!!!

      Every parent has personal responsibility to raise his own children in the way of Torah (Shulchan Aruch).

      It’s not up to the so called Rabbeim and it’s not even up to your children’s teachers.

      A parent that studies and knows his stuff, will know how to handle all these issues when they come up.

      Hint: All these “issues” have been dealt with 2000 years ago, from the time of Moses our teacher and master. Nothing new under the sun.

  • 3. Unbelievable! wrote:

    I’m surprised at Michoel Chazan, I thought he had more integrity than that. As for the others, I’m not surprised. How do they get away with lying, twisting the truth, intimidation etc? Are they coated in Teflon so nothing sticks? Braun needs to be deported back to Australia & if not, thrown in jail. What a hypocrite & a Baal Gyveh. He is a walking Chilul Hashem.

    • 4. lubavitch wrote:

      australia dont want braun….plus hes a US citizen…thats where hes from…

  • 5. noah wrote:

    i don’t know the back story to all this and i don’t care. but if i owned a store in the neighborhood i would switch to the ok. it can’t be good to be in the middle of all of this mess.

    • 6. Sheep! wrote:

      This is EXACTLY what Braun wants! He wants to tarnish the CHK, destroy the jobs that it gives to the few that work there, undermine the industry – all in the holy name of ‘making peace’.

      We are so blessed that Braun cant keep his hungarian in his pants and just weeks before Rosh Hashana he had to ‘jump’ and do this and try to make more Shalois on our entire communties Kashrus.

      Look at us fools, we voted for change and we got Herzog, Chazan, Shpielman, spritzer and now Braun…. Same old same old.

      Ksiva Vachasima Tova….

  • 8. chossid wrote:

    braun and his gang should cool their heels in prison ,then maybe we have a chance in this community.

  • 9. 770 chassidim wrote:

    this is where the money and time is spend instead to take care of our teenage kids in the street with shwartzees and drugs, on this Chodesh Elul. what a shame!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    No shalom, no chinuch, no future it’s embarrasing for crown heights.

  • 11. BEEN HERE B 4 BRAUN wrote:


    • 12. Braun the Proxy wrote:

      Braun is noting more then a proxy for the corrupt cabal of the Crown Heights Jewish Community Council, Inc. who have been stealing millions in the name of the community for over 40 years.

      Attacking the proxy Braun is exactly what they want.

      Remember, the cabal was willing to pay Rabbi Rosenberg for that so called Zablo Din Torah $150,000. They did so, because $150,000 is a small price to pay for a major distraction (as CHLEAKS.COM wrote above). Besides the $150,000 was not out of any personal pocket but from the millions they stole.

  • 13. Sydney... wrote:

    we are so glad that you left Sydney!. Amazingly thing have gotten so much better and B’Achdus since you left…

  • 14. Hirschel Pekkar wrote:

    How is it that all, so far, comments, do not place BH. on top of their comments, how much The Bal Shem Tov and The Rebbe spoke about this issue.
    By the way, BH. stands for “BE HONEST”.
    (with yourself)

  • 15. Shaina wrote:

    One second you guys are complaining about tuition costs and the terrible hanholoh. The next second you see rabbonim wasting community money…. Shocking!!!

  • 16. declasse' intelelctual wrote:

    Having worked in the Kashrus business from many angles( employee, masgiach, buyer and so forth, I can say that the Kashrus business is very dirty business owing to power, protégé and money

  • 17. Chodesh Elul wrote:

    The Rebbe would be shaking his head at this utter stupidity. If a store wanted to choose between chk or ok ou whatever it may be that is their choice. If people want to go to certain places because of their hashgacha its because they relay on it. Stop the communism. Its bad enough the government wastes its time trying to control us by telling us what size sodas we are allowed to drink.

  • 18. CHLEAKS.COM wrote:

    This is all a distraction.

    When will you post the information about the $41,555,744.47
    the corrupt Crown Heights Jewish Community Council, Inc. received by way of government grants and contracts (to assist the more needy in the community) over the course of years (since 1989 to current).

  • 21. Yanki herzog wrote:

    Yanky herzog is a mecharcher riv to the highest order. He has always been involved with mchlokes. It’s what runs in his veins. Kol kulo machlokes. Yanky do teshuva! Yesh kone olomo beshaa achas!

  • 23. Shmaryahu Bowdre wrote:

    To all you hypocrites and bored pessimists,

    Stop calling for Sholom with Hepech HaSholom. The Name is Rabbi Braun, not Braun, and hoping for another Yid, especially a Talmid Chochom (see Rashi, Sanhedrin 44B), to go to jail, especially in the month of Elul runs diametrically opposite to the spirit of Chassidus. There’s really nothing more to say other than my outcry to you all to spend your precious time reading Likeutei Diburim.

    Allow the Rabbonim their right to work this out in Beis Din and court and the verdicts will speak for themselves.

    Why do you have to have an opinion for everything? It’s inappropriate.

    • 24. are you kidding??? wrote:

      Braun a Talmid Chacham? HE DIDN’T EVEN HAVE SMICHA when we got shafted with him! He is a FRAUD who lives for causing trouble. He is a dirty individual, both inside & out. Clean up your act, Braun, it’s Elul for you too!

    • 26. are you kidding??? wrote:

      And another thing. Beis Din? WHERE????????? WHY???????????????? They are going against a court of law decision. You think Braun & the rest of the terrorists care about Beis Din? No, that’s only for the little guy, people like us.

      Tell me, is it part of your shi’ta with Braun & co to NOT allow ordinary people an opinion? You all are going to suppress our free speech as well? Well, that makes sense when we know who you all are.

    • 27. CHLEAKS.COM wrote:


      The whole episode of the so called Zablo Din Torah and the so called elections (for CHJCC and Beth Din) that followed, was nothing more then a DISTRACTION.

      Braun is a distraction….

      Let’s not forget who brought Braun to Crown Heights. It was mainly Yaakov Spritzer and Mendel Hendel…enough. said.

      The corrupt cabal of the CHJCC would rather have us talk about this garbage then talk about the $41 plus million.

      Don’t be a dog who chases after twigs!

  • 28. awacs wrote:

    Where’s the $10,000 fine mentioned in the letter? I don’t see it anywhere.

  • 30. so upsetting that the rabbonim can't get along wrote:

    to me, these fights are completely destroying the fabric of our community. if the parents can’t look to the leaders of our community as examples of ahavas yisrael, honesty, middos tovos, and exemplary, halachic jews, how can they expect to transmit those values to their children. something is broken!! please, for the sake of the kinderlach, find a way to resolve these issues without crazy lashon hara, name calling and the like. it doesn’t befit chassidim.

  • 32. Sarah wrote:

    I think everyone should change to the
    Ok. That would be wise un ah soff

    Braun should really packed up and go back where
    He came from. He did us no good. I can’t believe
    I voted for him.

  • 33. so disappointed wrote:

    Michoel: You were one of the good ones, all those years ago. What happened? How can you think this is right? Even your old friend Nash, has the good sense to stay away from this, at least in public. We all know the CHK for what it is, and you are right to move after them. But like this? With this insane man leading the way? DO you think Braun will restore respect to the rabbonim, like this?

    • 34. CHLEAKS.COM wrote:

      Michoel Chazan was never one of the good ones.

      Nash stays away because he made away with cash and Real Estate after his “service” at the CHJCC (like many before and after him).

  • 35. attorney wrote:

    braun and his cohorts simply have too much time on their hands , get them jobs so they will disappear.

  • 37. no one special wrote:

    #2,,,,,Maaseh avos simmon lebonim.

    The general disregard towards the integrity of Torah, in it’s broadest sense, produces cynical and confused children, teen-agers and adults.

  • 38. 20 years ago wrote:

    On the third page It says to make the necessary arrangement by elul 9th 5753 not 5773, hey hurry up you’re late; )

  • 40. Too bad.... wrote:

    I’m not from Chabad, but I do keep up with their goings on. The things going on with the Beis Din under the name of Mr. (?) Rabbi (?) Braun sound awful, providing we are getting an unbiased report. IS it unbiased? How would we know?

  • 41. Mother wrote:

    Braun is here how long?
    Machloikes has gotten worse, how long?
    Do the math

    • 42. Doing the math wrote:

      32 negative opinions against this menuvel, 1 in favor. He doesn’t exactly have a lot of community support, does he?

  • 43. grammar?? wrote:

    Does it makes sense to write (in a letter dated rosh chodesh elul) “please note that if etc. etc. by 9 ELUL etc etc effective IMMEDIATELY

    just wondering

  • 45. OK wrote:

    I think 28 is right.

    Think about it. If all CH merchants decided one morning to switch to the OK the machlokes is OVER.

    I am sure if all merchants came to the ok as a group
    the price would be much much lower then now.

  • 46. Eli Cohen wrote:

    Eli Cohen is coordinating with whole machlokos during time when he is supposed to be the executive director of the CHJCC and receiving OVER $100,000 to fight Rabbi Osdoba.
    He should be fired immediately together with Braun who has only fueled the fire of machlokos here in CH.

    • 47. CHLEAKS.COM wrote:

      You my friend are playing into the distraction.

      What exactly should he be fired from?

      The whole CHJCC must be shut down and the thefts that have been stealing from the community(s) of Crown heights should be prosecuted and locked up.

    • 48. not good enough wrote:

      Fire & sue the whole damn lot. They get govt money and don’t do jack with it to help us. Oh yeah, they put in new windows, I heard it was bullet proof glass. Wise move knowing the mood of the entire community.

  • 49. sinas chinam wrote:

    Sinas Chinam is why we lost Jerusalem and probably why israel is going through this difficult time. a lot of hate here change your tone:)

    • 50. Enough wrote:

      It’s not hate. It’s called harsh criticism. People need to stop using words so loosely.

  • 51. chassidim wrote:

    we want braun out, period, it was a mekas tous,an elected official who is obviously not well and not welcomed anymore.pack him up and ship him out.

  • 52. n'eNow wrote:

    please stop speaking loshon hora about this topic, it doesnt get you anywhere… please do it for yourswelf. comments are not meant to be a loshon hora bash…

    • 53. To my good friend wrote:

      I know it’s you by your signature!! You don’t live here & you don’t know how much damage this man is doing & has done to this community. We are in serious, SERIOUS crisis. The community is in real danger of falling apart. People are hungry, their kids aren’t registered for school because they can’t pay tuition, people are losing their homes & whatever money comes in to the CHJCC they use to pay lawyers because nobody has any sholom. We speak out because we don’t have any other recourse. Yes, we ARE angry. And used. And cheated by our so-called Beis Din (there are 2!!!) Moshiach? He isn’t coming here so fast.

      Talk to you soon!! :)

  • 54. What a terrible terrible stink of a stink wrote:

    He’s behind Tzfatim Terrorism
    He’s behind bringing down the food industry in Cr Hts
    He’s behind the dissaray within the Beis Din of Cr Hts

    Either Gerlitzky or Holtzberg must contact police and muscle this man out of the city and out of the country at once before Rosh Hashana!!!!!!

    I will not stand by and see the good people and visitors of Crown Heights suffer any longer!

    Out of town admirer

  • 56. Why do we need to see this? wrote:

    My question is why this is being posted on a site that is viewed internationally. It just brings out the worst of the people involved, as well as the people commenting.

  • 57. Scratching my head wrote:

    Could someone please tell me why the Rabbonim of Crown Heights sent my cousin a seruv for going to court when they themselves take their own issues to civil court ???????????

  • 58. TO HERSHEL PEKKAR wrote:

    The reas on there is no Boruch Hashem is becauser it is not Boruch Hashem that we are stuck with Braun. He is nothing but a troublemaker

  • 59. the joker wrote:

    shwei and braun the abbot and costello of lubavitch.rosh hashona is just around the corner,watch the trouble they will cause in the rebbes shul,heaven help us all.

  • 60. remain silent! wrote:

    if you have NOTHING good to say about another YID then don’t say it!!!!
    Seriously this is so WRONG TO WRITE such nasty things!!! These people have children and family who are on this site so stop…not to mention its AGAINST the TORAH…hmmmm LASHON HARA…..ooooh and another thought ITS ELUL!!!!!

    • 61. Can't wrote:

      So when do we stand up to corruption?
      We answer with “silence is golden.”

      People have remained silent for quiet sometime now, and that silence has builded up into frustration.

      How long does one remain silent for?

  • 63. Gam zu letova wrote:

    Everybody, just say “gam zu letova” – this too is FOR THE GOOD. After all, moshiach is coming, just around the corner, we can hear the footsteps and this is all part of the master plan. It MUST get dark before the break of dawn. Embrace the darkness because it ushers the light. My friends, my brothers and sisters: THIS IS GOOD!!!

    • 65. Time to put away the kool-aid wrote:

      Face facts. It is NOT good. it is a disaster. You need to get out of the denial you are living in and get real. You want to say gamzu l’tova? If it makes you feel good you do it, but don’t expect the rest of us who are realists to buy into this baloney.

  • 66. diagnosis wrote:

    i’m sorry. b’ruchnius this is just asur to conduct onesself this way. use a little more class than that. and psychologically, this is somewhere between (or including) psychopathic and sociopathic.
    how embarassing to see this in the shechuna of the Rebbe. And to top it off, at this time, when we need so much rachmonus.

  • 67. I'm hungry wrote:

    This community has R”L become the laughing stock of world Jewry. People tell me “but you can’t be Chabad – you’re normal!” Is that nice that we have such a reputation?

    Sometimes you can tweak the spices in a dish, but if it’s way too salty, or the ingredients are spoiled, you have to throw it out. So many years and still no peace. Maybe we need to move along.

    Except for Fleish, I use OK all the time. Just wish they would use Lubavitcher Schita – what’s so hard teaching a G-d fearing Jew chassidus every day?

  • 68. time for OK wrote:

    I think it’s time to get a different Hashgacha all together. Maybe the OK, maybe even another Chassidishe Hashgacha…
    I’m afraid that our own stores in Kingston etc…will end up loosing businesses at the end g”f.
    How many of you will buy Braun Hashgacha???
    If I heard correctly, the Rebbe ordered to bring cake for Lekach from a Satmar bakery (or a bakery in Williamsbourgh) Did any one else heard it? Well, there are lots of people with Yiras Shamayim out there to give Hechsher.

  • 69. gamzu l’tova wrote:

    As I wrote earlier: gamzu l’tova, that is how frum people approach such issues! Chassidishe people would go a step further and say: tracht gut, vet zein gut. All the doom and gloom comments are coming from the sitra achra – a very unholy place. You feed the evil by being negative. Tracht gut – yes, drink THIS kool-aid, and you have been PROMISED vet zein gut.

    Where are the basic values we all know? Now is the time to APPLY them! We know it gets darkest before the dawn. We know moshiach is approaching. EMBRACE the darkness because it ushers the light. Accept the fact that Rabbi Braun is the one who will bring us to the dawn of Moshiach!

    I believe…do you???

  • 72. Shmaryahu Bowdre wrote:

    The pattern is clear. So many “Baalei Tshuvos” think Judaism is a democracy. They are swayed by the secular culture around them. They promote ‘transparency’ and ‘freedom of speech’ in everything.

    The Torah however teaches a very different lesson.

    Ask Rabbonim and believe their Psak is correct. [This is the lesson from Mayin Shelonu.] If there’s an argument, they go and seek independent, senior advice. [Not courts]

    Therefore, let us direct our minds and mouths towards Hashem and let’s start to behave like Chassidim once and for all.

    כאן צוה.

    • 73. Racist wrote:

      You are a racist who discriminates and stereotypes Baalei Tshuvos (on the grounds of their religious upbringing).

      The Torah VALUES all BT’s and places them higher then tzadikim, not that any FFB’s are tzadikkim by any streach of the imagination!

      Me thinks time for a some of your own teshuva (and join our BT ranks – we welcome you).

  • 74. Are you MENTAL??? wrote:

    You wrote: “Accept the fact that Rabbi Braun is the one who will bring us to the dawn of Moshiach!”

    Are you MENTAL???

    Next you will claim that he IS moshiach…

    Well, he ISN’T.

    I know, because I am.

    • 75. I'm with you wrote:

      Love it.
      But what happened to the court update? The OTC was for Thursday the 15th. It’s already Sunday. Is there a GAG order?
      Can I still eat on Kingston?
      Will the stores who didn’t kowtow to Braun stand up and say so. There are hungry people who are too confused to know where to eat.

  • 76. Mendel Weiss wrote:

    Please !please!
    Don’t talk negative words against any yid,especially so close to rosh hashana.
    We all need a lot of rachamei shomayim,
    Just say more Tehilim ,so Moshiach will come now.
    We all need him.
    This story is very painful to read
    Please be careful what you write


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