Kiryas Joel Hasidic Wedding Probed by New York State After Superspreader Fine

The New York State Department of Health says it is investigating a Hasidic wedding that was scheduled in upstate New York Monday evening at a synagogue where throngs of people were seen gathering without masks and not practicing social distancing.

Officials were so concerned about the event, originally set to take place at the Congregation Yetev Lev synagogue in Kiyras Joel, that they issued a cease and desist order to leaders of the Satmar sect just hours before it was due to get underway. Still, a steady stream of bearded, black-hatted men were seen gathering at the massive synagogue around the event’s originally-scheduled time.

“The order we issued on Monday morning was clear: social gatherings must follow strict protocols regarding capacity limits, mask wearing, and social distancing in order to help stop the spread of COVID-19,” a spokesperson for the New York State Department of Health told The Daily Beast in a statement. “We are aware of reports that a gathering was held and are investigating whether there was adherence to the guidelines laid out in the order. If not, we will pursue all appropriate legal remedies.”

Word of the probe came a day after Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a paltry $15,000 fine over another potential superspreader wedding also organized by the Satmar Hasidic community that took place in Brooklyn and drew thousands of people earlier this month.

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