A record-breaking donation was made to the holy site in Jerusalem's Old City, on Wednesday, December 19.An envelope containing 507 checks was found lying in plain sight, against the Western Wall, the Jerusalem Post writes.
The wall is a common prayer spot for Jewish believers from all around the world. The local tradition is to leave a note hidden between the cracks of the wall, hoping that your prayer will be answered.
This time, a man praying next to the wall uncovered an envelope filled with over 500 million-dollar checks. The amounts on them add up to over $500 million (€378 M), reports say.
According to Jerusalem police spokesman Shmuel Ben Ruby, the founder sought council from a lawyer in Jerusalem, and then went on to turn the treasure over to local police.
All the checks were signed, but the recipient had not been written on them. Because of that, there is a possibility that they might not ever be cashed.
Officials registered them in their lost-and-found section, in case they were simply forgotten by someone by the wall.
Shmuel Rabinowitz, the Rabbi overseeing Jerusalem's Western Wall, tells reporters that the checks were signed by different people, most of whom were Nigerian. Israeli police officer Micky Rosenfeld clarifies that the others had been sent from the United States, Europe and Asia.
Rabinowitz is convinced that the generous benefactors “wanted to give all they had to the Creator of the universe.”
However, Algemeiner notes that similar checks, written by African residents, have been left at the wall before, and none was legit.
Some believe that there is a possibility they were sent by Nigerian scammers, who in the past pretended to be the president or prince of the country, trying to transfer funds off-shore.