The Hasidic Drug Dealer

Oct 14, 2023 | Crime, Drugs, Religion, Social, Videos

Samuel Leibowitz is an extraordinary man who has lived a remarkable life. A member of an ultraorthodox Jewish sect, he was imprisoned for the last 9 years due to drug trafficking. Now released from prison, he plans to return to his community in North London and live once again as an observant Hasidic Jew.

The community that Samuel comes from, Stamford Hill, is a closed community in the United Kingdom with almost no media presence. With about 20 thousand Jews living there, it follows the rules and customs of Judaism that have remained unchanged for centuries. And yet despite its insularity, its inhabitants face the same struggles as everyone else – even those of a convicted felon such as Samuel.

Samuel is 38 years old and has spent half his adult life in prison across three different countries. Both of his arranged marriages ended in divorce and he now has no contact with his two children. Though released from prison on a condition that he remain electronically tagged and observes a strict curfew at night for the next five months, he now faces a difficult choice: continue on his path of crime or submit himself to religious conformity?

This remarkable story is captured in the documentary ‘Leibowitz: The Return’ which follows Samuel’s journey back into society after so many years away. Through cinematography, interviews and conversations this film paints an intimate portrait of faith and family within ultra-orthodox Judaism. It is sure to inspire any viewer who watches it – by showing how one person can triumph over adversity despite all odds. So why not take some time out of your day to experience this captivating story? You won’t regret it!

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David B