A New York rabbi known for his ultra-Orthodox stance on circumcision is facing charges stemming from a number of complaints received by the New York Police Department.
Rabbi Aaron Zayin was arrested last week after exchanging messages with a federal agent posing as a Craigslist user interested in purchasing “fresh baby foreskins,” according to the criminal complaint.
Rabbi Zayin is believed to have sold an estimated 5,200 foreskins since 2015 when he started selling the pieces of human skin on Craigslist and advocating their aphrodisiac qualities as well as their miraculous cancer curing and longevity effects.
“He would sell them in small bags, fried in oil with added spices and salt, like little onion rings, which seemingly made them more palatable and easier to consume,” 40th precinct New York Police Officer P.J. Hustler told reporters.
“His product was so popular and in demand, he was forced to purchase foreskins from numerous synagogues around the country,” Officer P.J. Hustler added.
To supply to the demand, Rabbi Zayin would perform up to 40 Brit Milah’s a day, also known as “covenant of circumcision” in the Jewish faith, at his synagogue but also in his home garage, as well as local restaurants and even in public washroom areas.
“He harassed me and forced my poor son to have three circumcisions in three years. He barely has any skin left on his genitals,” one mother told reporters in tears.
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If convicted, Zayin could face a $500,000 fine and up to 1,087 years in jail according to current New York state laws, believe experts.