US wants extradition of prominent Ger hassid accused of sodomy
The Brooklyn District Attorney's office has requested the extradition of Avrohom Mondrowitz, a resident of and a prominent member of the Ger Hassidic sect, on child molestation charges dating back over two decades involving four boys aged 11 to 16.
Avrohom Mondrowitz is seen on ABC's Nightline news program.
The extradition request was made in January, according to Brooklyn District Attorney's Office spokesman Jerry Schmetterer. "We know that the US Department of Justice and the State Department have begun the extradition process," said Schmetterer. "It is also our understanding that the Israeli Justice Ministry has been contacted as well."
The Justice Ministry declined to comment.
Mondrowitz, who was contacted by telephone by The Jerusalem Post, hung up as soon as the reporter identified himself.
However, a prominent member of the Ger community in Jerusalem defended Mondrowitz.
"There are people who are trying to disparage Mondrowitz's name," said the source.
"Mondrowitz is a very intelligent, talented man and so are all of his children. His father is highly respected in the community. I can't believe these stories are true.
The source said Mondrowitz was in the computer business.
Mondrowitz worked for a short period at the Jerusalem College of Technology as a fund-raiser and at the Jerusalem College of Engineering as a lecturer.
The Post has also learned that Dep.-Cmdr. Avi Aviv of the National Fraud Squad's Cyber Crimes Division is conducting an investigation against Mondrowitz.
Mondrowitz, who was born in Tel Aviv in 1947 and later moved with his family to Chicago, arrived in Brooklyn in the late 1970s and presented himself to Orthodox educational institutions as a rabbi and clinical psychologist.
He provided psychological treatment to children from the mixed Jewish-Italian Borough Park neighborhood where he lived. He also opened a yeshiva for children with behavioral problems.
Four children, all from Italian families and all neighbors of Mondrowitz, complained of sexual abuse perpetrated by Mondrowitz. Jewish victims also eventually testified against him, but only after the statute of limitations had expired.
In 1985, a New York State court charged Mondrowitz with eight counts of child abuse in the first degree, endangering the welfare of a child and five counts of sodomy in the first degree.
Mondrowitz and his family fled to Jerusalem after a warrant was issued for his arrest.
At the time of the indictment, sodomy of boys was not an extraditable crime, since it was not defined as rape under Israeli law. In 1988, the Knesset changed that law, apparently opening the way for Mondrowitz's extradition.
The Brooklyn DA's office said Mondrowitz could not be extradited until this year, when the Knesset approved a law removing the impediments to retroactively applying the 1988 law.
But Michael Lesher, an attorney representing six men who say they were molested by Mondrowitz in the early 1980s but who were not included in the original indictment, said the extradition was delayed due to officials, especially Brooklyn District Attorney Charles J. Hynes, dragging their feet.
Lesher claims that Hynes balked due to heavy pressure to drop the case from the Orthodox community in Brooklyn, which supported Mondrowitz despite the fact that Israel's Edah Haredit Rabbinic Court issued a ruling in 1988 in which unnamed "insidious acts" committed by Mondrowitz were mentioned, and warning him to stay away from children.
"Hynes was elected in 1989 with strong Orthodox support," Lesher said in an e-mailed message. "He appointed a virtually all-Orthodox Jewish Advisory Council after being elected, and he reversed the policy of his predecessor, Elizabeth Holtzman, and did not press for Mondrowitz's return to face trial.
In September 1993, Hynes instructed the federal government to close its file on Mondrowitz and said he would not pursue the case while Mondrowitz remained in Israel.
Lesher said he was "elated" to see the district attorney finally moving to extradite Mondrowitz. "All my clients hope that Mondrowitz will at last be brought to justice."
In response to Lesher's claims, Schmetterer said extradition was impossible until the Knesset acted this year.
But in past news reports on delays, Hynes's office was quoted as providing a different explanation. Sources were cited saying that despite the changes in Israeli law, the extradition request could not be made retroactively.
1. What says the Gerrer Rebbe?
Ben Azai - England
Israel must not be seen as a refuge for criminals escaping justice. It would both damage Israel and fuel attacks on 'Jewish influence' in New York politics. Perhaps the Gerrer Rebbe should instruct Mondrowitz to return to New York without being extradited. This case reflects badly on Ger as well.
2. Statute of Limitations?
Ben Azai - England
If it has passed the statute of limitations, what's the point of returning if he can't be tried?
3. Bring him backand let him face the music...
and if found guilty send him to NC where bubba and leroy will be his best friends.If he's lucky he will commit suicide. Dumb.B
4. Protecting Mondrowitz
Tally White - USA
Would Mr. Mondrowitz be receiving such protection if he were Christian or Arab? No, he would be called a pervert and booted out immediately.
5. Sodomy non curable
petra - USA
There is no cure for pedophiles. Locjk him up and throw away the key.
6. Put him in jail
Maor - Venezuela
7. What should be done with Mondrowitz...
Etoile - Canada
He should be tried by an Israeli court, and not be extradited anywhere. One fundemental purpose of creation was to create a safe haven for Jews fleeing danger or persecution. That however does not mean that justice should be impeded. He should be given a trial and, if need be, receive a just punishment within Israel. All Jews should be considered important by Israel, and it should never be seen as permissable to hand our bretheren over to strangers. Remember Meir Lansky?
8. no brainer us aint iran.he'll get fair trial
seems this sicko should be brought back and tried in us court. what would israel say if an accused palestinian terrorist was hiding in the us and the us refused to send him back to stand trial
9. Mondrowitz the sodomizer
Rabbi Moshe Ben-Hod - Israel
In the 1970s when living in Brooklyn my son was invited to a weekend with Mondorwitz along with some other boys, My son told me that he will not go as there were bad rumous about him. This man is a disgrace and should be punished to the maximum along with those shielding him, as Hassidim have the obnoxious belief that ibe if theis can do no wrong.
This monster belongs in New York to face trial on the charges against him. How can Israel shelter him? How can Ger justify their continued protection of him? Send him back and let justice prevail.
11. interesting coincidence
Andrew Levin - USA
This weeks Parsha, Vayareh, deals with the destruction of Sodom as punishment for its evil. Now we have supposed rightous Jew who has been credibly accused by Jew and Gentile alike of the same upspeakable perversion commited in Sodom. A beard and payos do not a tzaddic make. This week's Parsha makes G-d's opinion on this matter crystal clear. It would be a grievous Chilool Hashem to allow this man to flee to Israel and thereby avoid prosecution for such heinous acts.
12. a change in the law would be helpful
as far as i know, if you commit a crime against an american outside of america then you can be tried in america. likewise, if you commit a crime against a jew outside of israel, you should be triable in israel (considering jews as if they were citizens of israel).
13. In all fairness
Brad - USA
Arrest Benedict XVI first and extradite him to U.S. to be tried for his complicity in the hiding of Sex Pervert priests wanted for their crimes of innocent children all over the U.S. Convict him and place him in front of a firing squad. Do this first, and until then just shut up.
14. 4 Tally White - "Protecting Mondrowitz?
15. why is he prominent
what makes him prominent i have never heard of him
16. i agree with bam
who ever said he is prominent? the press likes to say that bec. it sounds juicier.
Abuse victims hope healing begins with rabbi's arrest
Wednesday, October 17th 2007, 4:00 AM
For too long, an alleged Brooklyn pedophile rabbi's victims have waited for their silencing to end. Now, they hope his prosecution will push their closed community to out child molesters.
Twenty-three years after Rabbi Avrohom Mondrowitz fled to Jerusalem to evade charges of molesting four boys, Israel's ministry of justice now has an extradition request from Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes, his spokesman said.
"It's a shame it took so long. People committed suicide over him," said a 44-year-old man who says the popular rabbi abused him and his friends in the 1970s.
"If they did this a lot earlier, there would have been a lot more people saved because other child molesters would get the message. This will send the message."
In the hush-hush Orthodox Jewish community, victims say Mondrowitz left a trail of destroyed lives during his tenure as a rabbi/psychologist and headmaster in Brooklyn during the 1970s and early 1980s.
Former District Attorney Elizabeth Holtzman tried to get him extradited in the 1980s, but a U.S. Justice Department official said the extradition treaty with Israel made it hard - until changes last January - to forward the request to Jerusalem.
Hynes, who took office in 1989, had been slammed for failing to go after Mondrowitz. Critics charged he feared losing the powerful Orthodox Jewish vote. But his spokesman denied the allegations, saying Hynes moved swiftly once a treaty change allowed Israel to recognize the 1985 sodomy counts.
An Israeli Justice official declined comment, as did Mondrowitz, contacted at his Jerusalem home.
One alleged victim was only 11 when he described Mondrowitz, who headed his alternative Jewish boys' school, as befriending him, giving him money and taking him to movies and his mountain cabin.
Soon, he began taking friends, he said.
"He used to talk us all up. He did a lot of things to entice kids," he said. "I used to bring kids to his house. He'd grab kids in front of me, in his office.
"It affected me a long time," he said. "I felt I was taken."
The victim, not named in the indictment, said he believed hundreds of boys were fondled by Mondrowitz, and saw dozens himself.
A 39-year-old rabbi filed a complaint last year, accusing Mondrowitz of abusing him when he was 11. He charged that pedophiles are still free to ruin lives in the closed Orthodox community, where leaders routinely silence victims to avoid scandal.
"There are probably more kids harmed in this community than any other because everything is placed under the rug," he said. "They throw a kid out of school if he complains. "This will send a message: You can run away and hide and you can think it is forgotten, but eventually it will hunt you down and get you. That is very important. It is a deterrent we never had."firstname.lastname@example.org
It took 23 years but it's now come to fruition. Serial Child Molester; Avrohm Mondrowitz, will finally be flown back to the United states to face prosecution for his abhorrent acts against children. It has taken way too long but at last justice will have its say.
Baruch Hashem; this monster will be taken off the streets; hopefully forever. The scum buckets who enabled Mondrowitz and other child predators to prosper in their psychotic ways deserve to be locked in the slammer alongside with him. That would entail mental midgets such as Aaron Twersky, David Choen, David Mandel, Yaakov Perlow, Margo, Belsky, C.P. ('P' for penetration) Schinberg, Shlomo Mandel, Moshe Heineman, Gerrorist Rebbe, Yakov Hopfer, Shmuel Kaminetsky, Matt Salomon, Milton Balkany, Lazer Ginsberg, and others who didn't make this list but deserved to.
Klal Yisrael! You made your voices heard. You flooded Charles Hynes office with phone calls, emails, faxes, and letters. You never let up. You were persistently a pest in our fight against a silent but deadly enemy. It is your actions that facilitated the removal of a dangerous criminal. Thank You. Thank You. Thank You!
Reward of $25,000 offered in beating of Lakewood rabbi
6:54 AM EDT, October 17, 2007
Orthodox Jewish leaders and the Anti-Defamation League are offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to the person who pummeled a rabbi with a baseball bat in Lakewood.
Mordechai Moskowitz was attacked more than a week ago.
Witnesses told police they saw a black man walk by Moskowitz and, without saying a word, beat him in the head and body with an aluminum bat.
Despite racial and religious tensions, police say there's no evidence to support the attack was a hate crime.
The 53-year-old is in stable condition.
Information from: Asbury Park Press, http://www.app.com