Claims Conference Blames Dead Official for Botched $57M Holocaust Fraud Probe

Current Staff Plead Ignorance About 2001 Whistleblower Letter

getty images

By Paul Berger

Published May 16, 2013, issue of May 31, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share
  • Single Page

(page 2 of 3)

The fraud eventually came to public light in 2009, when a Claims Conference employee discovered two highly dubious applications within a few weeks. The Claims Conference then hired the law firm Proskauer Rose to investigate further, and a few weeks later contacted the FBI.

Domnitser, the director of two Holocaust funds, worked in the Claims Conference’s New York office at the time of the letter.

Greg Schneider
Greg Schneider

Top Claims Conference officials in New York, executive vice president, Gideon Taylor, former executive vice president Saul Kagan and Greg Schneider, assistant to the executive vice-president, were copied on faxes about the letter sent between New York and Frankfurt.

Taylor and Kagan no longer work for the Claims Conference, but Schneider is today the organization’s executive vice president.

Referring to Schneider, Kessler-Godin said in her prepared statement, “The entire investigation in Germany, directed by Dr. Brozik (who was senior to Greg at the time), was never shared with Greg. The entire investigation that occurred did not include Greg and involved people senior to him.”

Kessler-Godin emphasized: “The only document that Greg received … was the explanation from [Domnitser].” In fact, documents obtained by the Forward reveal that Schneider received two separate faxes about the probe, both of which referenced the anonymous letter and its allegations.

The first fax, on June 21, 2001 was a letter from Domnitser to Brozik in which Domnitser dismissed the claims made against him and against several of his colleagues in the anonymous tipoff. The second fax, on June 28, contained Domnitser’s rebuttal of a detailed chart laying out queries and concerns that a Claims Conference employee in Germany assembled after being asked to look into the letter’s allegations.

The staffer confirmed that the five applications cited in the anonymous letter included false statements and apparently fraudulent documents. The Frankfurt-based staffer expressed serious concerns about Domnitser and several employees who had approved these applications.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Angelina Jolie changed everything — but not just for the better:
  • Prime Suspect? Prime Minister.
  • Move over Dr. Ruth — there’s a (not-so) new sassy Jewish sex-therapist in town. Her name is Shirley Zussman — and just turned 100 years old.
  • From kosher wine to Ecstasy, presenting some of our best bootlegs:
  • Sara Kramer is not the first New Yorker to feel the alluring pull of the West Coast — but she might be the first heading there with Turkish Urfa pepper and za’atar in her suitcase.
  • About 1 in 40 American Jews will get pancreatic cancer (Ruth Bader Ginsberg is one of the few survivors).
  • At which grade level should classroom discussions include topics like the death of civilians kidnapping of young Israelis and sirens warning of incoming rockets?
  • Wanted: Met Council CEO.
  • “Look, on the one hand, I understand him,” says Rivka Ben-Pazi, a niece of Elchanan Hameiri, the boy that Henk Zanoli saved. “He had a family tragedy.” But on the other hand, she said, “I think he was wrong.” What do you think?
  • How about a side of Hitler with your spaghetti?
  • Why "Be fruitful and multiply" isn't as simple as it seems:
  • William Schabas may be the least of Israel's problems.
  • You've heard of the #IceBucketChallenge, but Forward publisher Sam Norich has something better: a #SoupBucketChallenge (complete with matzo balls!) Jon Stewart, Sarah Silverman & David Remnick, you have 24 hours!
  • Did Hamas just take credit for kidnapping the three Israeli teens?
  • "We know what it means to be in the headlines. We know what it feels like when the world sits idly by and watches the news from the luxury of their living room couches. We know the pain of silence. We know the agony of inaction."
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.