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2 Charged After Snatching Jewish Man's Face Mask In Anti-Semitic Attack, Police Say

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A Queens couple is facing charges after they allegedly snatched a Hasidic man's face mask and made anti-Semitic comments related to COVID-19.

Clelia Pianho, 46, and Paulo Pianho, 35, approached three men shortly after 8:30 p.m. Sunday near Ross Street and Bedford Avenue in Williamsburg, police sources told CBS2.

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The suspects allegedly made anti-Semitic remarks, then grabbed one man's face mask and punched him in the face.

A scuffle broke out, and police arrested the suspects on the scene. They were each charged with aggravated harassment as a hate crime.

"Whether it is this horrible anti-Semitic act that we saw or the horrible anti-Asian acts we saw in previous weeks, none of these acts of bias or discrimination are acceptable in New York City," Mayor Bill de Blasio said during Monday's coronavirus briefing.

Last month, the city's human rights commission said there had been 248 reports of harassment and discrimination tied to the outbreak since February.

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