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Letters With Swastikas and 'MAGA' Sent to 7 Shops, Israeli Consulate: NYPD

By  Rachel Holliday Smith and Gustavo Solis | October 4, 2017 1:45pm 

 Assemblyman Dov Hikind posted a photo of a hate-filled letter sent to Weiss Bakery on Monday.
Assemblyman Dov Hikind posted a photo of a hate-filled letter sent to Weiss Bakery on Monday.
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Facebook/AssemblymanDovHikind

BROOKLYN — NYPD hate crime investigators are looking into who sent letters filled with swastikas and anti-Semitic, anti-black and anti-gay language to the Israeli consulate and least seven businesses in Borough Park, Sheepshead Bay and Harlem.

The letters — which begin with President Donald Trump’s campaign slogan “Make America Great Again” written underneath a large red, white and black swastika — were sent to the Israeli consulate in Manhattan, as well as the Harlem Business Alliance, a Harlem Starbucks and several Jewish-owned businesses in Brooklyn, according to police.

The letter targets Jews as well as black and gay people in four lines of text: Trump’s slogan following by “Juden Raus” (a Nazi-era German phrase meaning “Jews out”), “Negroes and f----ts must burn in hell” and “Christian identity is back.”

Paul Freund, a manager at the kosher butcher shop Satmar Meat of Boro Park, told DNAinfo New York the store received the letter on Monday. In the 11 years the shop has been in business, he said he’d never seen anything like the “disgusting” letter, he said, but added that he wasn’t worried.

“I’m not a chicken. I don’t get scared from a letter, you know?” he said. “Whoever did it is a silly man.”

A block away at Weiss Bakery, a kosher bake shop, the same letter arrived on Monday as well, according to worker Moshe Liebers, whose sister opened it. Assemblyman Dov Hikind posted a photo of the one-page printed message on Facebook Tuesday night, urging anyone who receives a similar letter to call the police.

“In light of what’s going on the world, all threats must be taken very seriously,” he said.

In total, eight locations received the letter between Sept. 29 and Oct. 2, the NYPD said Wednesday. In Manhattan, recipients included the Israeli consulate on Second Avenue and three Harlem locations: a jewelry store on East 116th Street, Starbucks on West 145th Street and the Harlem Business Alliance on Lenox Avenue.

Regina Smith, the executive director of the HBA, said she didn't think too much about the "random" threat — except to call the police and report it to the hate crime unit.

"There’s nothing I can do about it," she said, emphasizing there was "no name or return address" on the letter or envelope.

“People are pretty bold, but not bold enough to show themselves," she said.

In Brooklyn, in addition to Weiss Bakery and Satmar Meat, two law offices in Sheepshead Bay also received the message and reported it to police, the NYPD said.