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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of New York

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, November 22, 2022

Antisemitic Assailant Pleads Guilty To Conspiracy To Commit Hate Crimes

Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that SAADAH MASOUD pled guilty today to one count of participating in a conspiracy to commit hate crime acts in connection with MASOUD’s repeated physical attacks of Jewish victims in New York City between 2021 and 2022.  MASOUD was first arrested in this case on June 14, 2022.  MASOUD pled guilty before U.S. District Judge Denise L. Cote.

U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said: “Saadah Masoud deliberately targeted three victims because of their religion and nation of origin.  There is no place in this country for this offensive and hateful conduct.  This Office is dedicated to seeking justice for victims of hate crimes and will aggressively prosecute those who spread hate by criminal means.”

According to the Indictment, other public filings, and statements made in court:

From at least in or about May 2021 through at least in or about April 2022, MASOUD and others conspired to commit hate crime acts in the Southern District of New York and elsewhere.  In furtherance of the conspiracy, MASOUD assaulted at least three victims based upon the victims’ actual and perceived religion and national origin.  Specifically, as part of his guilty plea, the defendant admitted to committing the following acts of violence that were motivated by the victims’ Jewish or Israeli identity or perceived identity:

  • On or about April 20, 2022, in Manhattan, MASOUD assaulted a victim who was wearing an Israeli flag.
  • On or about June 2, 2021, in Brooklyn, MASOUD and a co-conspirator assaulted a victim who was wearing clothing traditionally associated with the Jewish religion, including a yarmulke, while the victim was sitting outside the victim’s own home.
  • On or about May 20, 2021, in Manhattan, MASOUD assaulted a victim who was wearing a Star of David necklace.

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MASOUD, 29, of Staten Island, New York, pled guilty to one count of participating in a conspiracy to commit hate crime acts, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.

The maximum potential sentence in this case is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the judge.  MASOUD is scheduled to be sentenced on March 3, 2023, by U.S. District Judge Denise Cote.

Mr. Williams praised the outstanding investigative work of the New York City Police Department’s Hate Crime Task Force and the Special Agents of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. 

The prosecution of this case is being handled by the Office’s Civil Rights Unit in the Criminal Division.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys Lindsey Keenan and Mitzi Steiner are charge of the prosecution.

Topic(s): 
Civil Rights
Contact: 
Nicholas Biase (212) 637-2600
Press Release Number: 
22-362
Updated November 22, 2022