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TEL AVIV (Reuters) - An Israeli court jailed eight Jewish teenagers on Sunday for carrying out neo-Nazi attacks in a case that sparked revulsion in a state that was a haven for Jews after the Holocaust.
Tel Aviv District Court Judge Zvi Gurfinkel sentenced the teenagers, aged 16 to 19, to between one and seven years in prison for a "shocking and horrifying" year-long spree of attacks that targeted foreign workers, ultra-Orthodox Jews and homeless men.
The court said the group also planned to attack Arabs.
The eight teenagers were immigrants to Israel from the former Soviet Union and court documents cited social adjustment difficulties as a factor behind their involvement in the gang, which posted pro-Adolf Hitler video clips on the Internet.
One of the teenagers was the grandson of Holocaust survivors.
Gurfinkel said he gave the teenagers lengthy sentences in part to deter other Israelis from joining neo-Nazi groups.
The youths videotaped and posted on the Internet some of their attacks. The charges against them included painting swastikas in a synagogue and planning a birthday party for Hitler, court documents showed.
About a million immigrants from Russia and other former Soviet states have moved to Israel since the fall of Communism in 1990. Some have risen to prominence in politics and industry while others struggle to integrate, including thousands not considered Jewish by religious authorities.
Writing by Allyn Fisher-Ilan; Editing by Richard Williams