(NEW YORK) — A Florida man has been charged with calling a Jewish organization and threatening to kill Jewish people, according to court documents unsealed by the Justice Department on Wednesday night.
Deep Alpesh Kumar Patel, a 21-year-old from Sarasota, Florida, allegedly called the World Jewish Congress in New York City and left a threatening voicemail, authorities said in a release.
“If I had a chance, I would kill every single one of you Israelis,” Patel is alleged to have said in an expletive-filled tirade, according to the Justice Department. “Every single one of you! Cause mass genocide of every single Israeli.”
When police officers interviewed Patel at his home, they say he confirmed that he made the call but denied threatening anyone.
“When the officers asked Patel to describe the content of the telephone calls, he explained that he had called Jewish centers to express his family’s anger with Israel for the genocide of the Palestinian people. Patel stated that he did not intend to scare or threaten anyone, but that he wanted to use the harshest language possible to convey his anger,” the complaint filed by the U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Florida read.
A lawyer for Patel didn’t immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.
Earlier in the week, FBI Director Christopher Wray told a Senate panel that Jewish people make up 2.4% of the U.S. population but receive nearly 60% of all the religious-based threats in the United States.
“The reality is that Jewish people are uniquely targeted by different terrorist organizations across the spectrum,” Wray said.
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