Congresswoman Lowey Speaks at Flu Vaccine Facility

At a news conference today, Congresswoman Nita Lowey called for an end to the government shutdown at a Rockland County vaccine facility that faces delays in securing approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, for its flu vaccine for use by Americans 50 years and older. With FDA employees furloughed due to the shutdown the delay in approval for new vaccines increases the chance the vaccine may not be available before next year’s flu season. Congresswoman Lowey spoke at the Pearl River manufacturing facility of Protein Sciences, a biotechnology company whose vaccine Flu blok was approved by the FDA last year for use by individuals 18-49 years old. The company is now seeking approval for its flu vaccine technology to be used by Americans of all ages. But with FDA employees furloughed due to the shutdown, the FDA is currently not issuing approvals for new vaccines.

House Fire in Chestnut Ridge

Firefighters responded to a house fire at Skye Place in Chestnut Ridge early Sunday morning. A neighbor called Ramapo police around 2:40AM to report smoke and flames coming from the windows and roof. It took firefighters about 35 minutes to bring the blaze under control, and crews from Orange and Rockland Utilities had to secure a downed power line leading to the house. Police said the homeowners were away at the time, and there were no injuries. The Ramapo police and the Sheriff’s Department’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation Arson Unit was working together to determine the cause of the fire.

Arrests Made at Monsey Yeshiva

The head of a Monsey yeshiva and two other rabbis were among at least four men arrested in an FBI investigation into a group that is accused of using kidnapping, along with other methods, to force Orthodox Jewish men to grant their wives religious divorces. According to a criminal complaint unsealed Thursday, the group planned to kidnap and torture a man they thought was the husband of an Orthodox woman. The woman was actually an undercover FBI agent. One of those arrested was Rabbi Martin Wolmark, the dean of Yeshiva Shaarei Torah in Monsey, which was one of the locations raided by the FBI on Wednesday. Also charged was Rabbi Mendel Epstein, a prominent ultra-Orthodox divorce mediator in Brooklyn, along with two others. They were scheduled to appear in US District Court in Trenton, NJ this afternoon.

Arrests Made at Monsey Yeshiva

The head of a Monsey yeshiva and two other rabbis were among at least four men arrested in an FBI investigation into a group that is accused of using kidnapping, along with other methods, to force Orthodox Jewish men to grant their wives religious divorces. According to a criminal complaint unsealed Thursday, the group planned to kidnap and torture a man they thought was the husband of an Orthodox woman. The woman was actually an undercover FBI agent. One of those arrested was Rabbi Martin Wolmark, the dean of Yeshiva Shaarei Torah in Monsey, which was one of the locations raided by the FBI on Wednesday. Also charged was Rabbi Mendel Epstein, a prominent ultra-Orthodox divorce mediator in Brooklyn, along with two others. They were scheduled to appear in US District Court in Trenton, NJ this afternoon.