Student Charged as 'Brains' Behind N.J. Temple Attacks

A Rutgers University student was reportedly charged with being the “brains” behind a string of recent attacks on synagogues in New Jersey.

Aakash Dalal, 19, of Lodi, N.J., was charged with arson and hate crimes. He’s being held on $2.5 million bail, the Star-Ledger of Newark reported.

Dalal’s childhood friend, Anthony Graziano, is accused of carrying out the Molotov cocktails attack on that were Congregation Beth El temple in Rutherford on January 11. The temple’s rabbi and his family were sleeping in their residence at the time and had to flee for their lives.

Police say Dalal was the mastermind of the attack, and other less-serious ones on synagogues, pushing his pal into action, the Bergen County Prosecutors Office said.

Authorities described a “teacher-student” relationship between Dalal and Graziano, who reportedly both expressed disappointment when earlier attacks caused limited damage, the Star-Ledger reported.

Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. All readers can browse the comments, and all Forward subscribers can add to the conversation. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires 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 and will be deleted. Egregious commenters or repeat offenders will be banned from commenting. 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 Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Student Charged as 'Brains' Behind N.J. Temple Attacks

Thank you!

This article has been sent!