- The Washington Times - Tuesday, November 5, 2002

From combined dispatches
LOS ANGELES Jewish Defense League leader Irv Rubin, charged for plotting to bomb a mosque and an Arab-American congressman's office, was declared brain dead yesterday after trying to kill himself in jail, his lawyer said.
Mr. Rubin, 57, used a razor blade in the 6 a.m. suicide attempt and underwent surgery at a hospital, spokesman Bill Woolsey said.
Mr. Rubin had been scheduled to appear in court yesterday for a hearing in his case. He and a second member of the militant group were arrested last year and were awaiting trial.
Mr. Rubin slashed his neck with a razor and jumping over a railing at the federal Metropolitan Detention Center, family members said. They said he fell as much as 18 feet.
Lawyer Bryan Altman said his client was "on life support, and he's brain dead." He added that he did not know whether doctors could do anything else and called the prognosis for his client "extremely dire and grave."
Mr. Rubin and associate Earl Krugel were arrested Dec. 11 on charges of plotting to bomb the King Fahd mosque in suburban Culver City and an office of Rep. Darrell Issa, California Republican. Mr. Issa is the grandson of Lebanese immigrants.
A complaint against the two men quoted Mr. Krugel as saying during a meeting that Arabs "need a wake-up call."
According to Mark Werksman, a lawyer for Mr. Krugel, Mr. Rubin was in a line of inmates waiting to be transported to court when he made his suicide bid.
Mr. Rubin had grown "increasingly despondent" and found the weight of his case "overwhelming," he said, adding that Mr. Rubin had lost 40 pounds in jail.
"It's reached the proportions of a Greek tragedy now," Mr. Werksman said.
Mr. Rubin and Mr. Krugel were arrested after an FBI informant delivered an explosive powder that authorities believed was the last component in making pipe bombs.
The charges carry up to 40 years in prison upon conviction.
Mr. Rubin, who by his own account has been arrested more than 40 times, joined the JDL early in the 1970s and quickly moved up, becoming chairman in 1985.
In 1989, the leader of the rival Jewish Defense Organization was charged with firing shots at Mr. Rubin and wounding three others in New York. Mordechai Levy was convicted of assault.
According to his biography, Mr. Rubin learned to fight anti-Semitism while growing up in Montreal, "where some hotel owners and other business people hung signs reading 'No Dogs or Jews Allowed' on their doors and where French Canadian schoolchildren taunted him because he was Jewish."

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