Friday, March 28, 2008

Isaac Hersh is Free and Back in the USA. . .



http://www.theawarenesscenter.org/hersh_michael.html

Isaac Hersh is Free and Back in the USA. . .

But Let's Not Can't Forget The Rest of the Children at Tranquility Bay!!!

© (2008) The Awareness Center, Inc.

March 28, 2008

Isaac Hersh was being held at Tranquility Bay, a boot camp in Jamaica, which was known for using severe corporal punishment on the children. Allegations have been made that Isaac's parents (Miriam and Michael Hersh) and Rabbi Aharon Schechter were aware of the schools reputation prior to sending him there.

At around 7:00 AM Isaac Hersh arrived in New York City on a private plane. He will return to the custody of his foster family.

Another boy was released from Tranquility Bay a few weeks ago and stated he witnessed Isaac Hersh being abused. Yesterday during a meeting with US Embassy officials Isaac confirmed the abuse. At the time the other boy was released he begged rabbinical figures to help free Isaac because he is being beaten in the camp and his mental health was deteriorating quickly.

Those involved with freeing Isaac Hersh include, Joshua Ambush, Attorney; Rabbi Aryeh Wolbe, executive director of the Torah Outreach Research Center of Houston and who is also one of the foster parents for Isaac twin brother; Rabbi Avraham Wolbe, Monsey, NY, David Pelcovitz, Phd of Yeshiva University, Mr. Zvi Gluck, Hatzalah, New York, NY; Isaac Klein, Far Rockaway NY and Senator Hillary Clinton.

A huge thank you goes to Rabbi Yosef Shereshevsky from Norfolk Virginia, COO of Wextrust Capital, for financing this operation and providing his private Jet. Also Rabbi Dr. Abraham J. Twerski, Rabbi Dovid Feinstein, Rabbi Shmuel Kamenetsky were involved in the rescue.

As of today Michael Hersh who was the president of Hatzaloh Ambulance Service in New York, is on a leave of absence from his position.

Given this great news about Isaac, we cannot forget about all the other children who are still incarcerated at Tranquility Bay. Please keep them in your prayers over shabbos. As a people we need to make sure all of the children are freed from this torture chamber they call a school.

For more information on Tranquility Bay go to: Coaltion Against Institutionalized Children


This is a case of alleged child abuse and neglect. As of March 25, 2008 there are not allegations of a sex crime. On March 20, 2008 The Washington Center for Peace and Justice, Inc. filed a federal lawsuit today on behalf of a Isaac Hersh, a 16 year old Brooklyn boy seeking injunctive relief to stop his abuse and to gain his release from a notorious behavior modification facility in Jamaica, West Indies, where he was sent after being brutally seized at the behest of his parents, Michael and Miriam Hersh. Michael Hersh is a former student of Yeshiva Chaim Berlin in Flatbush neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York, and a disciple of Rabbi Aaron M. Schecter, dean of the Yeshiva.Joshua Ambush, the lead counsel in the case, announced the filing of the action against the parents of Isaac Hersh. The father is Michael Hersh, CEO of Chevra Hatzalah Volunteer Ambulance Corps, Inc., the largest all-volunteer ambulance service in the United States. The complaint also names the State Department for constitutional and civil rights violations.

Ambush emphasized that the lawsuit is not about tort damages, but rather is an effort to save the boy's life and rescue him from a modern day concentration camp. "Child abuse by a parent should not be tolerated in civilized society, and should not be tolerated when the parents hires surrogates to perpetrate the abuse. It is unconscionable that perpetrators of abuse are able to evade prosecution by virtue of the fact that the abuse is taking place outside the jurisdiction of the Untied States. In addition to rescuing this child, this suit seeks to demonstrate that federal courts, in such cases, retain jurisdiction over the abusers and those that aid and protect them.

Attorney, Joshua Ambush will be available for interviews by phone appointment at 410-484-2070


Disclaimer: Inclusion in this website does not constitute a recommendation or endorsement. Individuals must decide for themselves if the resources meet their own personal needs.

Table of Contents:

  1. Press Release: Federal Law Suit Filed To Rescue Child From Modern Day Concentration Camp

  2. CALL To Action (03/23/2008)

  3. Jewish family sues Jamaican reform school for troubled teens (03/25/2008)

  4. City Room - Metro (03/25/2008)

  5. CALL TO Action #2 (03/27/2008)

  6. Isaac Hersh is Free and Back in the USA. . . But Let's Not Can't Forget The Rest of the Children at Tranquility Bay!!! (03/28/2008)

Also see:

107 comments:

Moshe said...

Baruch Hashem!

Thank You Vicky Polin said...

A special thanks to you and everyone involved in the rescue.

Meir said...

Aaron Shlechter should be fired from his position pronto.

exposemolesters said...

This is excellent news. I am so happy for Isaac Hersh.
================================

All great things are simple, and many can be expressed in single words: freedom, justice, honor, duty, mercy, hope.

Sir Winston Churchill

youtube said...

Lakewood Community Rocked By Non-Jewish Man Posing As Jew!-

Zev Segal video said...

Rabbi Zev Segal speaks to Nachum on 3/5/08 Part One

Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu video said...

http://youtube.com/watch?v=GXK_BzXVDmE

Organ donation.

Rabbi Meshi Zahav on Organ Donation youtube said...

http://youtube.com/watch?v=5VCzjwPkygw

Rabbi Meshi Zahav on Organ Donation

Lipa Shmeltzer youtube said...

http://youtube.com/watch?v=CyrpY7K5MdU

Destroy the Arabs said...

http://youtube.com/watch?v=Dly21gLoNoI

Story of Rose Price, Jewish Holocaust Survivor said...

http://youtube.com/watch?v=s4SPpTUZIOc

So sad.

exposemolesters said...

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/969434.html

Last update - 05:02 28/03/2008
More arrests likely after severe abuse of 2 J'lem toddlers
By Roni Singer-Heruti

Police suspect the severe abuse of two toddlers uncovered in Jerusalem a week ago was not an isolated family matter, but may involve other homes that share the parents' religious beliefs. More arrests are expected.

Last week two preschoolers aged 3 and 4 were brought in serious condition to Jerusalem's Hadassah Hospital after being severely abused. The older boy has been released but his brother is still in a coma and his condition is critical.

The children had been severely beaten, whipped with cables and belts, burned with cigarettes and heaters, and their nails had been torn out. Both bore signs of prior abuse.

Police suspect that the abuse was a result of the mother's religious belief that the children could be "corrected" and "reeducated" while they were still small. The actions might also have been part of some ritual activity.

The children's ultra-Orthodox mother and father and another man staying in the apartment were arrested. Police are looking for a second suspect, Shimon Gabbai, who was also staying in the flat and has apparently fled the country.

Blood-stained handcuffs were found in the apartment.

It is not clear who had abused the children and why, or how come two ultra-Orthodox men were staying with the mother, who had thrown the father out two or three months ago. Police believe the woman was having an intimate relationship with one of the men.

"We know for certain that the children have been subjected to bad whippings and beatings, freezing water showers, burnings with heaters and cigarette butts, and shaking," a police officer said.

The children, who kept quiet at first, have recently started talking and told the police of the abuse they suffered and that other children were subjected to similar treatment.

The mother denies having hurt her children. The father, who has been released, also denies the charges and said he wasn't home that day. But detectives say they have evidence that he beat the children with a rod in the past.

The parents were divorced several months ago but kept this a secret so that their children's chances of finding a good match later in life were not impaired. At some point the wife drove her husband out of the apartment and forbade him to see the children.

child abuse said...

Struggles In Prosecuting Child Abuse
By KATHERINE AMENTA -- WMDT 3/28/2008

A case of child abuse may happen only once, but the effects can be long-lasting for the victim. Those memories and scars can present challenges for attorneys.

Wicomico County Assistant State's Attorney Jamie Dykes says, "Testifying is stressful, it's incredibly stressful, it's stressful for you or I as adults."

But, a child's taking the stand is usually a must in child maltreatment cases.

Dykes says, "Imagine a little child walking up a courtroom with say 50 people, walking up by themselves . . . all eyes are on them."

And that's often the challenge for prosecutors, basing an entire case on youth testimony. Wicomico County Assistant State's Attorney, Jamie Dykes says, while it can make for compelling evidence, it can also backfire.

She says, "Are they going to freeze up? How are they gonna handle cross examination?"

To help with that communication barrier, Dykes says the Child Advocacy Center is crucial. Dykes, who works with the Center, will talk with a family several times before their trial.

She says, "There has to be a level of trust that evolves in order for that child to describe those horrific events."

And building that bond could make all the difference for a jury's verdict.

Dykes says the courts do consider a child's well-being when determining if the alleged victim should testify. But, most of the time, the child is the only witness to the crime and he or she needs to take the stand.

exposemolesters said...

Aaron Schechter is a lousy, inadequate, synthetic stooge of the devil. He, Jake Perlow, and Samuel Kamenetzky all went to the Be'er Hagolah sefer torah event last June. No surprise that these sleaze balls endorse a "kiruv yeshiva" that physically and emotionally abuses their student body and its staff members.

Avi Shafran said...

I couldn't help but be reminiscent of the good old days in Camp Agudah - where a man like Yudi Kolko inspired so many campers. I think we should cut him some slack.

http://campagudah.net/

Debka said...

DEBKAfile - We start where the media stop

Abbas’ virulent anti-Israel rhetoric in Damascus greets Rice’s arrival to promote peace mission

March 29, 2008, 10:23 PM (GMT+02:00)

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrived in Tel Aviv Saturday night for a three-day push to breathe life into the fading Israel-Palestinian peace negotiations. She plans to join sessions between foreign minister Tzipi Livni and Palestinian negotiator Ahmed Qureia and talks between defense minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian prime minister Salam Fayyad, a trilateral format representing the first direct US intervention in the peace process.

At the Arab League summit in Damascus, Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas accused Israel of collective punishment against the Palestinian people and called on the Arabs and international community to help protect them.

Likud parliamentary leader Gideon Saar called his words a resounding slap on the face to prime minister Ehud Olmert, Ehud Barak and President Peres who advocate concessions to the PA such as the transfer of side-arms.

He said unilateral concessions jeopardize Israel’s security and distance the prospect of peace.

The Libyan ruler Muammar Qaddafi declared that Israel’s retreat to 1967 borders was not enough. Does Palestine consist only of Gaza and the West Bank? he asked. He demanded a “unified popular Palestinian state” and the return of Palestinian refugees to their homes.

Hillary Clinton said...

http://www.reuters.com/article/politicsNews/idUSN2842837720080330

"I know there are some people who want to shut this down, and I think they are wrong," Clinton said in an interview in Sunday's editions.

"I have no intention of stopping until we finish what we started, and until we see what happens in the next 10 contests, and until we resolve Florida and Michigan. And if we don't resolve it, we'll resolve it at the convention."

Agudath Israel Of America said...

With trembling voices we warn of the dangers of women rabbis...
-------------------------------

Women rabbis deal with inequality, challenges
Saturday, March 29, 2008
Janet Fillmore
Plain Dealer Religion Editor

Rabbi Rona Shapiro and the seven other women rabbis in Northeast Ohio get together every few months to talk about their jobs and their lives. They also share advice on everything from how to act in certain situations to whether to wear pants or a skirt, or if a shade of nail polish might be seen as inappropriate.

The discussions are how they deal with being a minority in their profession.

Women rabbis, like many women clergy, are not yet on equal footing with their male counterparts. They may not have the respect accorded the men. They certainly don't have the pay or the head leadership positions at the large congregations.

Anti-Bias Rally said...

Assault On Rabbi Spurs Anti-Bias Rally

BY CHRISTOPHER FAHERTY - Staff Reporter of the Sun
March 28, 2008
URL: http://www2.nysun.com/article/73843

community leaders and elected officials from throughout Brooklyn gathered yesterday at Borough Hall to denounce hate crimes in the wake of the beating of a rabbi in Park Slope.

The meeting, organized by a well-known community leader in the borough, Mohammed Razvi, brought together a multitude of leaders from all walks of life and religions to raise awareness of a recent rash of hate crimes perpetrated throughout Brooklyn, organizers said.

"A bias attack against any person is a bias attack against all of humanity. We stand together here today to show the harmony of our city and we will not allow anyone to divide us," Mr. Razvi, the co-founder of the community group We Are All Brooklyn and the executive director of the Council of People's Organization, said.

The gathering was organized following the bias-charged beating of Assistant Chabad-Lubavitch Rabbi Uria Ohana, who was assaulted after having his yarmulke stolen March 18. A suspect, Ali Hussein, has been arrested.

Rabbi Ohana spoke at the gathering, saying he hoped that his awful experience could raise awareness and prevent someone else from becoming the victim of a hate crime.

Devorah Halberstam, the mother of Ari Halberstam, a 16-year-old boy who was killed when an Arab man attacked a van filled with chasidic Jewish boys crossing the Brooklyn Bridge March 1, 1994, praised the group for coming together for such a good cause.

Speakers at the event included the president of Brooklyn, Marty Markowitz, and council members John Liu, David Weprin, Leticia James, and Bill de Blasio. The elected officials joined with community and religious leaders in signing a "statement against hate."

In addition to the attack on Rabbi Ohana, speakers said authorities have recently found hate graffiti throughout Brooklyn, including swastikas and anti-black slurs.

Moses Maimonides said...

This week in religion history

March 30

In 1135, Moses Maimonides, the renowned medieval Jewish scholar, was born. Considered the foremost Talmudist of the Middle Ages, his most important writing was Guide to the Perplexed (1190), in which he tried to harmonize Rabbinic Judaism with the increasingly popular Aristotelianism of his day.

In 1917, all imperial lands as well as lands belonging to monasteries were confiscated by the Russian provisional government. March 31

In 1492, Spain issued a royal edict advising Jews to either become Catholics, leave the country or be executed.

In 1732, composer Franz Joseph Haydn was born in Austria. One of his greatest contribution to church music was his 1798 oratorio The Creation.

In 1890, the Manitoba legislature passed an act abolishing Catholic public schools.

In 1959, the Dalai Lama was granted political asylum in northern India after fleeing Chinese-occupied Tibet.

In 1995, Carl Story, known as the father of bluegrass gospel, died in Greer, S.C., at age 78. He was among the first to merge the traditional rural sound of bluegrass with church music.

In 2005, Terri Schiavo, 41, a severely brain-damaged woman who spent 15 years connected to a feeding tube in an epic legal and medical battle that went all the way to the White House and the U.S. Congress, died, 13 days after the tube was removed. Ten days earlier President Bush had signed an unprecedented bill passed by the Congress designed to prolong her life.

April 1

In 1548, England's Parliament ordered the publication of the Book of Common Prayer.

Case of Malka Leifer said...

http://www.theawarenesscenter.org/Leifer_Malka.html

Principal, Adass Israel Girls School - Elsternwick, Australia

Bnai Brak, Israel

Tel Aviv, Israel

The goal of this web page is to help protect innocent children from becoming the next victim of a sex crime.

In 2000, Malka Leifer was hired by Adass Israel Girls School. In 2003 she was promoted and made principal. Her employment terminated and left Melbourne within 24 hours of being investigated by the school board. There were allegations made that Adass Israel school purchased the ticket for Leifer to return to Israel. Norman Rosenbaum, the schools spokesperson, the rumors are not true.

Zipporah Oliver, a prominent Orthodox psychologist, was quoted in saying that she has encouraged anybody who feels traumatized by the events to seek help in a culturally appropriate way.

Over the last seven years The Awareness Center has seen "the culturally appropriate way" in many orthodox communities is to let the rabbis "handle" these sorts situations, by either doing nothing or protecting the alleged sexual predator not to embarrass his or her family, at the expense of those who have been criminally violated.

It's not very often we will see rabbonim encouraging survivors of sex crimes to work with law enforcement, instead they encourage survivors to have their cases heard in a Jewish religious court. According to Jewish law there needs to be two `kosher' witnesses to a crime. It's important to note that women do not count as kosher witnesses. When you are dealing with sex crimes, there is hardly ever one witness, let alone two.

We all must be aware that our rabbis are not trained to conduct victim sensitive interviews nor have knowledge in how to collect forensic evidence. The "cultural norm" in more insulated communities is to scare those who have been victimized into silence by warning them they will not find good marriage partner or be allowed in good yeshivas (schools) if it was known they or a family member were a victim of a sex crime.

Instead of instilling fear, our rabbis should be encouraging survivors to work with law enforcement, to insure no more innocent children, adolescents or adults are harmed by alleged sexual predators. Instead of promoting fear, our rabbonim have a responsibility to be educating our communities that all survivor of sex crimes should be honored and respected.

The Awareness Center wants to encourage all survivors of sex crimes to contact their local rape crisis center and to work with law enforcement. It is the only way to insure that there is hope in stopping a sexual predator from creating more victims.

CHABAD said...

http://www.chabad.org/theJewishWoman/article_cdo/aid/654577/jewish/The-Beauty-and-the-Beast.htm

The Beauty and the Beast

By Shimona Tzukernik

I recently met a woman whose teeth reminded me of a picket fence bumped by a van. Packed tight in her mouth, they overlapped top and bottom, front and back. Yet she was one of the most beautiful women I've ever seen. We sat at a luncheon table and between talk she gently prodded arugula and hikama salad into her mouth. Lips closed, her eyes smiled and said, "Mmmm! Sooo glad to be here!" Her presence was happy, and real, and alive. How different, I thought, from the perfect smiles of so many mouths car-pooled to and from the orthodontist over so many winter-through-spring afternoons. I've seen my fair share of them. They remind me of paintings that are full of technical prowess but devoid of soul. And although their wearers might feel safe in their assurance that they "look good," the smiles leave my heart and sensibilities untouched.

At one point, I took to drawing on brown paper lunch bagsActually, I often find myself at odds with a culture that holds us to a standard of slickness, of airbrushed images and perfect lives. As an artist, I'm on the lookout for the shadows between the light, for the disproportion in the symmetry, and for a touch of madness in the sanity. In teaching children to draw, I am always delighted by the little ones' messes and scratches and rehashes that somehow capture the beauty of their subject, and its inner point. And I feel sad when they suddenly lose that freedom and become attached to perfection, when they rub out their erasings and give up in disgust of their creations. Yet even then, I try to remind myself that those moments are themselves shadows on a much larger canvas that spans many years and different places.

I've learned this by force of experience. I, too, have whitewashed canvases and torn up drawings in exasperation. At one point, I took to drawing on brown paper lunch bags in an attempt to come to terms with my personal shadows and technical incompetence. My hope was that by making marks on a worthless paper bag, I would surrender attachment to the relative worth of what I was doing. Practice is a powerful teacher.

I have also learned these concepts from the teachings of our sages. These lessons are more cerebral. They lack the visceral jolt that only a canvas can give. On the other hand, they realign me at my core, and once my thinking is set aright, I can come to the practice of art from a new point within myself.

One such mental master-class I took is from the Talmud in Tractate Nedarim.1 The Talmud relates a dialogue between a Tannaitic sage and a Roman noblewoman.

The daughter of the Caesar once exclaimed to Rabbi Yehoshua ben Chananya, "Such a beautiful Torah in such an ugly vessel?! How is it that one as ugly as you contains such wondrous and fine wisdom?"2

Rabbi Yehoshua responded, "Learn from your father's household. In what do they store wine?"

"In earthenware vessels," she said.

"The whole world uses earthenware vessels! And you – the Royal family – also use earthenware vessels!? You should store it in vessels of silver and gold."

She left and had the wine placed in barrels of silver and gold. As a result, it turned sour.

When she came to tell him what had happened, Rabbi Yehoshua ben Chananya responded, "And the Torah is just the same. It is best preserved in me because I am ugly."

"But there are handsome men who are learned!" Caesar's daughter protested.

"If they were ugly," Rabbi Yehoshua replied, "they would be even more learned."

It is more difficult for a beautiful person to attain humilityOne entry point into this story is the commentary of our sages explaining that the Torah can be compared to water, wine and milk.3 Just as these substances are best stored in plain vessels, so too, the Torah is best preserved in those who are humble. Why? G‑d tells us, "He and I cannot live side by side." "He" is our ego, which is the antithesis of a G‑d whose Oneness precludes anything else from having an independent existence. G‑d means "there is nothing besides Him" and ego means "me and nothing else!" So humility is a prerequisite container and preserver of the holy Torah. And it is more difficult for a beautiful person to attain humility.

On another level, I think the story speaks generally of the shadows and messiness and disproportion we all live with. We are trained to put everything into gold and silver vessels. It's the airbrush effect. Botox, facelifts and bodies wrapped tough with muscle are just the start. We want a perfect life. It ought look like the snapshots on the covers and insides of family magazines! Smiling is good and tears are bad. Youth is wonderful, aging is awful, old age is worse. Always have a grand old time, don't worry, be happy. And even if the outing was sour as vinegar, store it in a silver decanter. But, says Rabbi Yehoshua, the truth is that the perfection of life lies precisely in the barrels of wood and clay. It is because of, and not despite the shadows, that we have rich wine, fresh water, wholesome milk and true Torah. It is because we struggle and suffer that we shine. When we train ourselves to see the beauty of the beast, we come to understand purpose differently. And in some magical way, the shadows become light.

I know this too from experience. The instant I met my husband, I recognized him as my soulmate. In my mind, I thanked G‑d for sending me my other half. But it took Avrem more than the blink of an eye to get it that we'd been destined for each other since before time. I waited patiently for him to recognize this truth. After we finally got engaged, I asked, "So when did you realize?"

"I knew it when you saw my hands."

In a heartbeat I knew what he was referring to. My husband's hands are burnt. But thank G‑d, they have healed well. I'm real observant but even I didn't notice it until the third time we met, as Avrem reached for a glass on the table.

"Other women I had dated were repulsed by my hands. I saw them see the scars and recoil. But when you noticed, that's all you did. There was no judgment. Just observation."

It was true. There was no thought of "I don't want those hands touching me." His hands were strong. I wondered how they came to be burnt. That was it. My fiancé was telling me that it was my ability to see the beauty of that particular beast that had rendered me beautiful enough to capture his heart.

We cannot remain attached to reality being a particular wayIn some sense, whether or not we are beautiful is irrelevant. The real issue is our attitude to our beauty – whether of the body or of our life story. When Rabbi Yehoshua ben Chananya replies to the noblewoman's challenge that there are handsome men who are learned, he says, "If they were plain, they would be even more learned." On the words Iy'havu sanu, "if they were homely," Tosfot4 understands the words to mean "if they would hate."5 In other words, if these scholars would be dismissive of their own beauty, they would be even more learned. We cannot remain attached to reality being a particular way. Once we label "what is" as ugly, we lose access to the fact that this too is from G‑d Who directs everything and Who is the essence of good. And the same applies when we label "what is" as beautiful. At that moment, we reveal that we are attached to having the universe run on our terms and that we pride ourselves on the beauty. It's not that there aren't beauties and beasts. It's how I relate to and frame it that makes all the difference.

Some of life is fragrant and, quite frankly, some of it stinks. But I need to know that those labels and interpretations are by and large my own impositions on G‑d's infinite canvas. He's working a much bigger picture than I can conceive of. It's been in the making for thousands of years and it's painted with the red and black blood of my ancestors as well as with their radiant acts of kindness and self-sacrifice.

The earth tones span the soil of the Holy Land, Europe, Africa and America. The greens are those of pine firs and pomegranate trees, guava leaves and kale. There are green eyes and there's green envy. Green cash and green bile. Reds of rubies and rage and morning runs or work in the field, tomatoes and temptation. Red and yellow and green and brown and blue! Colors as vibrant and as dark as the collective image of our unique souls. I must observe and let go. As Rabbi Yehoshua exhorts his questioner, I must embrace my wood and clay, resist repulsion. And on the other hand, "if he would hate" – I must avoid pride and attachment to beauty, to things going my way. For G‑d is painting a canvas with my being. The work is called "Redemption." And the palette is all the colors of my life.

My acquaintance's picket-fence teeth spoke to me of all this. They were pearly white. Not the kitchen-sink tile variety that folks today duplicate with bleach. Pearly white. Some white, some cream, some shine, some blemish. Like life.
FOOTNOTES
1.

Talmud Nedarim 50b
2.

According to one opinion, Rabbi Yehoshua's face was blackened on account of his many fasts.
3.

Taanit 7a
4.

To Taanit 7a
5.

] The word sanu can mean "ugly" or "hated" depending upon whether it is spelled with the Hebrew letter samech or sin.



By Shimona Tzukernik More articles... | RSS Listing of Newest Articles by this Author

Shimona Tzukernik is the founder and director of Omek, a center devoted to in-depth transformational learning for women. She is also a course-writer for the Jewish Learning Institute, the largest institute of adult learning of its kind, operating in over 200 cities.

Rabbi Shmuel Kaminetzky said...

I made it seem like I was involved in the Isaac Hersh rescue in order to look good in the eyes of UOJ. I know I bungled so many other opportunities to save children and cup that with my signature in the lipa shmeltzer circus; this was something I had to "look good" for.
---------------------------------

Regional honor for Ukrainian rabbi

Published: 03/30/2008

The chief rabbi of Dnepropetrovsk received a top Ukrainian regional honor.

Rabbi Shmuel Kaminetzky, the spiritual leader of the Dnepropetrovsk region, received an award from the governor of the Dnepropetrovsk regional administration, Victor Bondar, for "his prominent contribution to the overall development of the region, interfaith and interethnic accord, and for fostering a united and solid Jewish community."

Dnepropetrovsk features one of the stronger Jewish communities in Ukraine.

“Contributing to a stronger Ukraine, the Dnepropetrovsk region may serve as a model in terms of harmony that exists here between different religious persuasions and national cultures,” Rabbi Kaminetzky said.

in the words of uoj said...

"UOJ" - "The Un-Orthodox Jew" said...

Let me shed some light here.

Kaminetzky is a rasha gamur! He is a sly bastard - that goes with the tide of today! He thought he could cleanse himself - from Eisemann, Kolko, Shmeltzer - and scores of other horrible things he did - so he got involved here - FOR HIM - NOT ISAAC! THERE WAS NO MEETING AT THE AGUDAH!

R' Dovid Feinstein was endorsing saving Isaac - NOT going against Schechter! He is a very weak man! Nebach!
12:49 PM, March 28, 2008

in the words of uoj said...

http://theunorthodoxjew.blogspot.com/2008/03/aron-schachter-of-agudath-israel-and.html?commentPage=2

"UOJ" - "The Un-Orthodox Jew" said...

There have been gross distortions of the truth as to who was involved in getting Isaac released.

None of the names thrown around were major players - a few calls here and there - maybe!

I will not post those bogus - attention seekers - limelight lovers - names! Go to the Satmar putz for BS - Not here!
6:39 PM, March 28, 2008

failedmessiah said...

More On The Isaac Hersh Rescue

Two members of the team that rescued Isaac Hersh tell slightly different stories about what happened.

Tzvi Gluck said that "someone" "happened" to tell them that Isaac would be interviewed by the US Embassy. No mention of the reason for this interview or what prompted it.

Yet, Rabbi Arye Wolbe…

…has a different version of that event, as the Jewish Week reports:

…The psychologist, David Pelcovitz, a professor at Yeshiva University, examined Hersh for 90 minutes yesterday in Jamaica and concluded that he had been physically and mentally abused, according to Rabbi Aryeh Wolbe of Houston, TX, with whose family the teen had stayed for nine months before his parents spirited him away to the boarding school in June.

Rabbi Wolpe said he and Pelcovitz and two other men flew to Jamaica in a private plane during the early morning hours Thursday. They had to rush, the rabbi said, because they had learned that American officials were going to interview Hersh at the American Embassy in Kingston at 9 a.m. Thursday in response to a federal lawsuit against the U.S. State Department alleging the boy was being abused at the school.…

Who told them? I would think either attorney Joshua Ambush or someone in the US government.

But the point is, it was not some random person who "happened" to mention this out of the blue. Is this significant? I think it will turn out be in the long run, just as other inconsistencies in the story will be.

failedmessiah said...

http://failedmessiah.typepad.com/failed_messiahcom/2008/03/rabbi-tzvi-gluc.html

The Isaac Hersh Kidnapping and its Coverup, Continued – Rabbi Tzvi Gluck Interview

Rabbi Tzvi Gluck was interviewed on Zev Brenner's radio show last night. I just posted an mp3 of Rabbi Gluck's appearance.

As I mentioned earlier, Rabbi Gluck spent considerable effort covering for Isaac's parents and for Rabbi Ahron Schechter.

You'll hear that on the mp3.

Here is the audio of the show said...

http://thecooljew.com/Zevbrener.mp3

Also check out the video made about this place here said...

From Failed messiah blog.

Also check out the video made about this place here http://www.thecooljew.com/showthread.php?t=1514

Posted by: Yosef S | March 30, 2008 at 02:02 AM

The Jewish Week said...

http://www.thejewishweek.com/viewArticle/c36_a6335/News/New_York.html

Breaking: Brooklyn Teen Released from Jamaica

by Stewart Ain
Staff Writer

Isaac Hersh, the 16-year-old Orthodox Brooklyn boy who was allegedly being "abused by the staff" of a school for troubled youths in Jamaica, is back in the U.S.


He arrived at Teterboro Airport in New Jersey early Friday morning after his parents agreed to have him released to the custody of a New York psychologist.


The psychologist, David Pelcovitz, a professor at Yeshiva University, examined Hersh for 90 minutes yesterday in Jamaica and concluded that he had been physically and mentally abused, according to Rabbi Aryeh Wolbe of Houston, TX, with whose family the teen had stayed for nine months before his parents spirited him away to the boarding school in June.


Rabbi Wolpe said he and Pelcovitz and two other men flew to Jamaica

in a private plane during the early morning hours Thursday. They had to rush, the rabbi said, because they had learned that American officials were going to interview Hersh at the American Embassy in Kingston at 9 a.m. Thursday in response to a federal lawsuit against the U.S. State Department alleging the boy was being abused at the school.


"We were waiting at the gate of the Embassy so he could see us and request to meet with us," Rabbi Wolbe said. "It was a miracle that we got there five minutes before he arrived."
The rabbi said U.S. consular officials were present when he asked Hersh to describe the treatment he received at the school, Tranquility Bay.


"He said he was thrown on his face by the staff and that both hands were twisted up behind him while five people were on top of him, putting their fingernails into his ears," Rabbi Wolbe said. "And he said he was punched in the stomach when he asked to borrow a pen from a counselor. … The vice consul with us was crying. She could not believe it."


After Pelcovitz interviewed the teen and made his assessment, Hersh was then returned to Tranquility Bay until his father, Michael Hersh, CEO of the Chevra Hatzalah Volunteer Ambulance Corps, agreed by phone to have his son released into Pelcovitz' s custody. The boy was then flown back to New York where he is in an "undisclosed safe location," according to Rabbi Wolbe.


He noted that young Hersh is not with his father, who, according to the federal suit, had been charged by authorities in Israel with child abuse for giving his son medicine without a prescription. The suit said the medicine was to calm the boy down.


Ken Kay, who said he was formerly associated with Tranquility Bay and that his son was its former director, asserts that the school is for troubled youths who need behavior modification. He denied that any abuse took place there.

Jpost said...

Judaism's golden mean
, THE JERUSALEM POST Mar. 30, 2008

An ultra-Orthodox couple from Beit Shemesh are under arrest for allegedly assaulting at least some of their 12 children. Sadly, that's not earth-shattering news in a country where child abuse seems to be on the rise. That some of the couple's children may have engaged in incest only adds to the grotesque revelations.

Yet what makes this story truly bizarre is that the 54-year-old wife and mother involved also heads a sect of several dozen women who maintain a Taliban-like dress code requiring them to cover their faces and wear multiple layers of clothing.

Meanwhile, in Jerusalem, in another ultra-Orthodox household, several people are under police investigation for abusing two toddlers. The youngest remains hospitalized and in a coma. The mother allegedly "corrected" the children's behavior by whipping them. Police insinuate she may be part of a sect which adheres to violent child-rearing practices.

Then there was the shocking bombing in Ariel on Purim, which critically wounded 15-year-old Ami Ortiz, the son of Messianic Christian pastor David Ortiz. A court order prevents detailing the direction of the investigation. What does seem apparent is that the perpetrators were Jewish extremists.

Messianics insist that one can remain a loyal Jew while professing faith in Jesus as the Son of God and the Messiah. In fact, this theology is abhorrent to Jews and Judaism. Christians who identify themselves as Jewish have long complained of violent harassment, most recently in Beersheba and Arad. Not a few messianic Jews live among us as "reverse Marranos," frightened to share their true identity for fear of persecution. Plainly, for those who proselytize - a practice insulting in Jewish eyes - such concerns are not misplaced.

Finally, there is the decree of the chief rabbi of Kiryat Arba, Dov Lior, coming in the wake of the March 7 massacre at Mercaz Harav Yeshiva, which claimed the lives of eight students, that it is "forbidden" to rent homes to Arabs or employ Arabs anywhere in Israel. Other religious Zionist rabbis have also supported a ban on Arab labor.

THERE MAY not be a pattern here, but all these are manifestations of religious extremism seemingly tolerated by the community in which they took place.

Take the deviant deportment of the "Taliban mother." Anyone who moves around, as this family reportedly did, among the country's various ultra-Orthodox communities, will almost immediately come into contact with their synagogues, rabbis, communal leaders and teachers. In these communities a fair amount of privacy is willingly sacrificed for a life within the all-embracing collective. Peer pressure is the norm.

That being so, why was there no intervention? After all, had the "Taliban family" made it their practice to drive on Shabbat, their car would quite likely have been stoned by those irate at this desecration of the holy day.

There was at least one attempt by a neighbor to sound the alarm via Internet postings, but did more of the family's genuinely pious neighbors, who may have suspected something was not right, report their qualms? And if not, what happened to the principle that all Jews are responsible for one another?

Or take the attack on the Ortiz family. We've heard Ariel Mayor Ron Nachman condemn the bombing. Likewise, Penina Taylor, of Jews for Judaism, says unequivocally that her anti-missionary group denounces the "atrocity" and prays for "the complete healing of this boy and the arrest and conviction of the perpetrator[s] of this heinous crime." Amen to that.

But we'd like to hear leading rabbis in the haredi and national religious community explicitly denounce all anti-missionary violence - not just the Ortiz attack, but also the ongoing harassment in Arad and Beersheba.

Let them say what we all know: that in a sovereign Jewish state such violence is immoral, illegal and contemptible. Further, and more broadly, let our spiritual leaders declare that fanaticism - whether that embodied in the Taliban of Beit Shemesh, or in blanket prohibitions on all Arab labor - goes beyond the bounds of Judaism.

It was not only Aristotle who preached the desirability of the golden mean. Authentic Judaism, too, has always sought a balance between "too much and too little." Clearly, the lesson needs to be taught anew; and it is up to those we turn to for spiritual succor to teach it.

Rabbinical Council of Victoria said...

Abuses alleged in Melbourne community

Published: 03/30/2008

Alleged abuses by a "trusted official" in Melbourne's Jewish community have been going on "for some time," an umbrella organization of rabbis acknowledged.

The Rabbinical Council of Victoria, in a statement in Friday’s Australian Jewish News, admitted it was aware of the alleged abuses and "encouraged alleged victims to come forward and confidentially present their issues to the RCV, so that halachic and legal counsel may be provided."

The alleged abuser is believed to be a rabbi who is not a council member. It is also understood the rabbi has no connection to the Adass Israel community, which is still reeling following allegations of molestation at its Jewish day school by former principal Malka Leifer, who fled to Israel earlier this month.

Council President Rabbi Meir Shlomo Kluwgant told the Australian Jewish News that if alleged victims come forward, "there will be no cover-ups and no sweeping of any issues under the carpet."

The newspaper said the latest allegations are believed to involve "inappropriate physical behavior as well as improper financial transactions."

leah said...

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/1/story.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10501101

nzherald.co.nz
Child sex abuse victims being failed by courts
Monday March 31, 2008

New research showing child sex abuse victims are being failed by the courts, with as few as one in 200 abuse cases being punished, has prompted calls for a new approach by the court system.

The research, conducted through interviews with jurors and a review of all sex abuse trials held in New Zealand between May and October 2006, showed lawyers bullied young witnesses, and jurors misunderstood abuse cases.

The Dominion Post reported juries were increasingly wanting corroborative evidence before convicting an accused even if they believed the child victim.

Forensic psychologist Suzanne Blackwell showed the court process was particularly fraught for children, as many defence lawyers used aggressive, misleading cross-examination.

Conviction rates for alleged sexual assaults on adults and children were low, with only 6 per cent of all cases reported to police resulting in a conviction.

Research suggested only one in 10 abuse cases were reported to police, meaning about half a per cent - one in 200 - cases of alleged abuse were punished.

Some lawyers appeared to engineer delays, knowing juries were less likely to believe older children, especially teenagers.

"I do think that the public and jurors think that the point of the criminal justice system is to determine the truth," Ms Blackwell said.

"But it becomes an unequal game between a scared court-naive complainant and a practised defence counsel."

Ms Blackwell, a former Justice Department consultant psychologist, found jurors seemed to want corroborative evidence to convict the accused, even if they believed the child's testimony.

The increasing demand for corroborative evidence has been dubbed the CSI effect, linked to the popularity of crime television shows that have convinced the public there will be a raft of forensic evidence in any crime.

When it is not there, they tended to acquit.

Through reviewing child abuse trials, Ms Blackwell found she could predict the outcome of a child sex-offence trial before it began with statistically significant accuracy, based on a set of nine variables.

If three of these were present, the accused would be convicted on at least one charge.

But if not, the accused would be acquitted, even if the jurors believed the child.

The variables she identified comprised whether the child was under 12 at the time of the trial; if there were more than one complainant; more than four charges; a witness to the offending; similar fact evidence such as a prior conviction; recent complaint evidence; penile penetration was involved; the accused had made some partial acknowledgement of guilt; and presence of DNA or other medical evidence.

Ms Blackwell said sexual offences should be treated differently from other crimes.

She acknowledged it was a complex issue, but advocated a more inquisitorial approach, whereby judges inquire into the facts to seek the truth rather than lawyers for both sides fighting to win.

exposemolesters said...

http://www.mercurynews.com/healthandscience/ci_8748784

Sins, secrets and denial

By Rob Dennis, Jeremy Herb, Matthew Artz and Chris De Benedetti

STAFF WRITERS
Article Launched: 03/30/2008 03:04:55 AM PDT

# TODAY: The scope of clergy abuse is far greater than previously known.

# MONDAY: The system allowed accused priests to remain in the diocese.

# TUESDAY: Members of religious orders are among the most prolific offenders.

# WEDNESDAY: Church officials take steps to prevent future abuse.

About the series

To identify the 64 priests and members of religious orders who were accused of molesting children in the Diocese of Oakland, Bay Area News Group reporters scoured tens of thousands of pages of court records filed in Alameda, San Francisco and Contra Costa counties.

To discover where the accused priests served, the reporters built a database of every priest who has served in every parish in the Diocese of Oakland since 1950, using the Official Catholic Directory. Before 1962, those parishes were listed under the Archdiocese of San Francisco.

The directory lists where priests were serving on Jan. 1 of the year listed, so in most cases, the priest also served in that parish for at least a portion of the previous year. If a priest is listed as serving in a parish from 1970 to 1975, for example, he likely served there for part of 1969 as well.

Several parishes have been combined during the years. Reporters used the diocese's current 86 parishes for purposes of mapping and calculating the percentage of parishes where abuse occurred. Where two or more parishes have been combined into one, abuse in one or more of those parishes was counted # as abuse in the current single parish.

To identify priests and members of religious orders who served in the Diocese of Oakland but were accused of abuse in other dioceses, reporters matched the database of priests who served here with a database of those who were accused of abuse in other parishes nationwide. The identities of these accused clergy members were confirmed through church documents, public records or other means, as were the accusations against them.

The reporters used church documents, obituaries and various public records to identify accused clergy members' current status and location.

The names of victims or their family members were not used unless they agreed to be identified.

By Rob Dennis, Jeremy Herb, Matthew Artz and Chris De Benedetti

STAFF WRITERS

On a March night two years ago, Bishop Allen Vigneron arrived at St. Raymond's in Dublin to do what he had done so many times in previous months: apologize.

"The record of clerical sexual abuse of children and young people is a heavy burden -- a burden for all Catholics in the United States, a burden for the Church in Oakland, and surely a great burden for all who have been directly involved in that history," he told the congregation.

What was left unsaid, however, was that the record of abuse in the Diocese of Oakland has never been fully disclosed.

Since January 2004, Vigneron had been making the rounds of 20 Diocese of Oakland parishes to apologize for 12 priests accused of abuse.

In fact, however, at least 64 Roman Catholic clergy members accused of molesting children have served since 1950 in nearly three-quarters of the parishes in the diocese -- more than five times more men than Vigneron named in his "apology services," a MediaNews analysis of court and church records has found.

More than a third of those accused priests and members of religious orders have not been named outside of court records or linked to the diocese until now.

In the most extensive examination to date of clergy child sex abuse in the diocese -- which includes Alameda and Contra Costa counties, and was part of the Archdiocese of San Francisco until 1962 -- MediaNews reporters examined tens of thousands of pages of court and church records, police reports and other documents, and they interviewed victims, experts and diocese officials.

Among the findings:

# Clergy members were accused of molesting children in at least 26 parishes and six high schools in the East Bay.

# At least two accused diocesan priests and 19 members of religious orders still serve at church facilities, most of them in the Bay Area, although they no longer work with children.

# Some of the most powerful priests in the diocese -- including a former chancellor and vicar general, a former schools superintendent, and two former deans responsible for supervising southern Alameda County -- were accused of abuse. One of the deans investigated child molestation allegations against the other.

# Accused clergy members served in at least 61 of the 86 parishes and all seven of the high schools in the diocese operated by male clergy. The remaining two, Holy Names in Oakland and Carondelet in Concord, are run by sisters.

# Police investigated accusations against at least five diocesan priests from the late 1970s to the mid-1980s after parents or neighbors reported abuse. None of the priests served prison time. One retired. One was sentenced to three months of probation and laicized, or removed from the priesthood, at his own request. He later returned to serve in another parish as a youth ministry coordinator. Charges were not filed against the remaining three, who were sent to therapy and then continued to serve as priests in the diocese for decades.

# Many accused clergy members were ordered to get treatment and then shuffled to multiple parishes for decades, not reported to law enforcement or removed from ministry -- mirroring the practices in the scandal-plagued Archdiocese of Boston and other dioceses around the country.

Diocese officials say their procedures today are vastly improved, and that they are committed to cooperating with civil authorities and preventing abuse. Priests who have been credibly accused now are immediately placed on administrative leave, pending an investigation.

The diocese was audited by the Gavin Group of Boston in November and found to be in full compliance with the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, standards that were issued by bishops in 2002. Diocese officials say there have been no reports of abuse by priests stemming from incidents in the past six years.

"We work daily and remain committed to keeping our parishes, schools and other Catholic institutions safe environments for children and all people," the diocese's chancellor Sister Glenn Anne McPhee said in a statement.

What diocese officials have not done, however, is release complete information about accused priests and the long history of abuse.

Of the 64 accused clergy members identified by MediaNews, 36 were accused of abuse in the diocese, and the remainder were accused in other dioceses but also served in the East Bay.

These numbers do not include accused lay teachers, coaches or deacons, nor do they include priests who were involved in relationships with adults.

MediaNews reporters identified 17 diocesan priests accused of abuse in the diocese, and an additional seven who served in the East Bay and were accused in other dioceses. In 2004, the diocese reported that 24 of its priests had been "credibly accused" of abuse, but it did not name them. In a subsequent series of apology services, Vigneron, the bishop, named only 12.

"My guess (is) all the names are public knowledge," said the Rev. Mark Wiesner, spokesman for the diocese. "If anything went to court, those are public already. We're not hiding a thing."

In addition to the 24 diocesan priests, reporters identified 19 members of the Salesian, Franciscan, Dominican, Christian Brothers, Jesuit, Holy Cross, Redemptorist, Society of the Precious Blood and Marianist religious orders who were accused of abuse in the diocese, and an additional 21 who served here and were accused in other dioceses.

The 2004 report noted that 17 religious order priests and brothers had been accused of abuse, but it also said the religious communities were responsible for investigating those allegations and did not name them. Vigneron did not name religious order clergy members in his apology services, even though 33 worked in various parishes or high schools in the Diocese of Oakland.

"The religious orders are responsible for their own people," Wiesner said. "In terms of how religious order priests were handled, those questions need to go to the heads of the orders."

Despite intensive media coverage and dozens of lawsuits, the vast scope of abuse in the diocese has remained buried in voluminous court records, and in personnel files that church lawyers have fought to keep secret.

Even now, six years after the priest sex-abuse scandal exploded into the public consciousness, and 21/2 years after the diocese reached a global legal settlement with the victims, their story has never been fully told.

After Boston

On March 26, 2002, 37-year-old Mark Bogdanowicz met with the Rev. Robert Freitas at a Fremont coffeehouse. For two hours, they delved into the terrible secret history that bound them.

Bogdanowicz's faith and innocence were taken away one Saturday night in 1980 when Freitas pinned the 15-year-old against the locked door in the rectory at Fremont's Santa Paula church and molested him.

During their meeting, Freitas acknowledged molesting Bogdanowicz and others, unaware that his victim was wearing a wire to record his former priest's confession.

Two weeks later, police arrested Freitas.

The following month, Stephen Kiesle, another former East Bay priest, was arrested and charged with molesting three girls at Santa Paula in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Both men and other Bay Area priests facing decades-old molestation charges would be freed in 2003 after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling overturned a California law extending the statute of limitations in such cases.

Still, the arrests and a series of subsequent lawsuits shocked the region. The sprawling nationwide priest sex-abuse scandal that had begun in January 2002 in Boston had arrived in the Diocese of Oakland.

Longtime residents knew it was not the first time that such allegations had been made against priests in the diocese.

In 1978, Kiesle had pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor lewd conduct charge for tying up and molesting two boys, ages 11 and 12, at Our Lady of the Rosary in Union City. Four years later, Monsignor Vincent Breen was ousted from his position as pastor of Holy Spirit in Fremont after a police investigation revealed that he had molested at least seven girls ages 7 to 14.

Although those cases had been widely publicized, they were seen as aberrations. Parishioners could not have known just how widespread the abuse was -- or for how long it had been going on.

'Too dangerous'

The earliest known case of priest abuse in the East Bay is reported to have occurred a decade before the diocese was even formed.

In 1952, the year Oakland's Bishop O'Dowd High School opened, the Rev. James Prindeville began molesting a 16-year-old girl at the school, according to a 2003 lawsuit filed against the Archdiocese of San Francisco, which ran parishes in Alameda and Contra Costa counties until the Diocese of Oakland was formed in 1962.

Prindeville, who denied the accusation, died in 2004. He had left the priesthood decades previously, married and was living in San Jose. He was not named in Vigneron's apology services.

His case was not an isolated one.

Also in 1952, the Rev. Gerald Fitzgerald, founder of the Servants of the Paraclete, a religious institute that treats problem priests, wrote that he already had treated a handful of clergy members who had abused minors, according to the 2006 book "Sex, Priests and Secret Codes," written by the Rev. Thomas Doyle, A.W.R. Sipe and Patrick Wall.

In a 1957 letter to the archbishop of Santa Fe, N.M., where the Paraclete facility was located, Fitzgerald wrote that he thought it was unwise to "offer hospitality to men who have seduced or attempted to seduce little boys or girls."

"If I were a bishop I would tremble when I failed to report them to Rome for involuntary laicization," he added, referring to the process in which priests are removed from public service. "Experience has taught us these men are too dangerous to the children of the parish and the neighborhood for us to be justified in receiving them here."

Nonetheless, by 1966, the Paraclete facility was specializing in the treatment of priests who had molested children, according to the book.

For the next three decades, in Oakland and in other dioceses and archdioceses nationwide, bishops continued to send accused priests for treatment at Paraclete and other facilities and then return them to ministry.

Other warnings also went unheeded.

In 1985, Doyle, along with attorney F. Ray Mouton and psychiatrist the Rev. Michael Peterson, delivered a report to bishops nationwide on the priest-abuse issue, which had begun to be widely publicized after the conviction of the Rev. Gilbert Gauthé of Lafayette, La.

Gauthé was sentenced to 20 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to 39 counts of molesting young boys.

The 92-page report examined the legal, medical, insurance and pastoral concerns raised by the issue and recommended steps to deal with it, including the establishment of a "crisis control team" to assist bishops in handling accused clergy.

The recommendations were ignored, according to the authors.

The victims

The number of victims likely never will be fully tallied.

In its 2004 report, the diocese said that there were at least 72. Members of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, say they know of more than 130. However, that figure includes only those who have sued or reported the abuse to SNAP; many more likely are continuing to shoulder their burden in silence.

"What they say is for every victim who comes forward, 20 do not," said SNAP member Dan McNevin, who was molested as an altar boy by the Rev. James Clark at Corpus Christi parish in Fremont's Niles neighborhood.

Experts say that child sex abuse is vastly underreported because of victims' feelings of shame, guilt and powerlessness that often continue into adulthood. Those feelings are compounded when the abuser is an authority figure, such as a priest.

"Victims of priests are a different group of victims," said attorney Rick Simons, who represented many of those victims in their lawsuits against the diocese.

"With other problems, you can go to your family priest for support. But (victims of priest abuse) can't go to church for support; they can't go to their parents. Often, they don't believe you. You're a kid; you're intimidated. You can't tell on God's representative on Earth. Often, victims find themselves criticized or not believed."

Joey Piscitelli, director of SNAP's Northern California office, agreed.

"The majority of sexual abuse victims abused by priests never come forward," said Piscitelli, whom a jury awarded $600,000 in 2006 after he was molested years earlier at age 14 at Salesian High School in Richmond by the Rev. Stephen Whelan. Whelan was not named in the apology services. The case is being appealed.

"The Catholic Church is very fortunate, in a financial sense, because if all the victims made claims, they'd be bankrupt," Piscitelli said.

Those victims who have come forward ranged in age from 2 to 17. At least 42 of them were girls. In at least nine cases, two or more siblings were molested by the same priest.

Among them were brothers Bob and Tom Thatcher, who were awarded more than $1.9 million by a civil jury for their molestation by the Rev. Robert Ponciroli at St. Ignatius in Antioch in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

During the civil trial, the Thatchers -- who were 9 and 10 when the abuse occurred -- described their feelings of confusion, guilt and helplessness, their subsequent addiction to alcohol and drugs, and the lingering effects of their childhood trauma.

"When I hit puberty and when I realized what sex was, I realized ... right then and right there that my first sexual experience was with a 300-pound priest," Bob Thatcher testified.

"I was 13; I know I started drinking at that time. It seemed awfully odd behavior for a 13-year-old, but that's when I started drinking."

Many other victims also have taken refuge in alcohol or drugs.

"Right now, (some) people aren't coming forward because they're hurt and wounded, and they have fears to worry about," Piscitelli said.

"In the meantime, they become drug addicts, drink, become depressed."

Bob and Tom Thatcher ultimately turned their lives around, married and had children of their own. Like other victims, however, they still bear the psychological scars.

Melinda, 46, of San Francisco was one of the victims who reported Kiesle to police for abuse two decades prior at Santa Paula in Fremont. She asked that her last name not be used.

"I still struggle every single day of my life," she said.

"I'm stable, OK, looking at the big picture, but emotionally I struggle every day. That is a direct result of the abuse and all that followed it."

The priests

For decades, accused priests had little to fear from the powers that be. In fact, in a handful of cases, they were the powers that be.

Monsignor Pearse Donovan served as the diocese's superintendent of schools from 1963 to 1972. He was a friend of Bishop Emeritus John Cummins, who first met him as a high school seminarian in 1943 and later served with him at Bishop O'Dowd High School in Oakland and at Corpus Christi parish in Piedmont.

In 1978, Donovan, then serving at St. Clement in Hayward, was sent to two treatment centers for alcoholism, Cummins testified in a deposition. That same year, Donovan began molesting a boy at St. Clement and later "passed him on" to an abusive Holy Cross brother, Lawrence O'Brien, at Hayward's Moreau High School, according to allegations in a 2003 lawsuit.

Donovan died in 1986. He was not named in the apology services.

The Rev. George Crespin, who served in two of the diocese's top administrative positions -- chancellor and vicar general -- from 1979 to 1994, was accused of molesting a boy in the mid-1970s while he was pastor of Our Lady of the Rosary in Union City.

Diocese officials found there was "insufficient evidence" to support the allegation against Crespin, but they agreed to pay his accuser $600,000 as part of the $56.4 million global settlement with abuse victims in August 2005. In entering the settlement, the diocese did not admit liability. Crespin now is retired and living at St. Joseph the Worker in Berkeley. He was not named in the apology services.

In southern Alameda County, two serial molesters -- Monsignor Vincent Breen of Holy Spirit in Fremont and Monsignor George Francis of St. Bede in Hayward -- held sway from 1965 to 1977 as deans responsible for supervising area priests.

In response to a complaint about Breen in the 1970s, Francis was called in to investigate. No action was taken. Breen was forced to retire in 1982 after a police investigation.

Vigneron has apologized for the abuse committed by Breen and Francis, both of whom are dead. SNAP says that Breen molested at least 15 girls, and Francis abused nine.

Aside from Breen and Francis, at least seven other diocesan priests have been accused of molesting four or more children, according to SNAP and court records: the Rev. James Clark (four), the Rev. Arthur Ribeiro (four), Freitas (five), the Rev. Gary Tollner (six), Ponciroli (eight), the Rev. Donald Broderson (11); and Kiesle (15). At least seven religious order priests or brothers also were accused of being multiple offenders.

The number of accused priests serving in the diocese grew steadily in the 1960s and 1970s, peaking in 1978 with 24. All three priests who served at Our Lady of the Rosary in Union City that year -- Crespin, Kiesle and the Rev. Antonio Camacho -- later would be accused of abuse.

This was not an anomaly. Given the relatively small community of diocesan priests, most of whom were transferred routinely every few years, at least 19 accused priests worked or lived with one another or with Cummins at various times, serving together at parishes, schools or on one of the numerous diocesan boards and committees.

'Out of the way'

Abuse occurred in parishes throughout the diocese, but the smaller towns of the time were especially hard-hit.

Clergy members were accused of molesting children in both Antioch parishes, as well as in the sole parishes in Byron, Dublin, Martinez, Newark, Piedmont, Pinole and San Lorenzo, according to court records. Abuse was reported to have occurred at three of the four parishes in Hayward, three of the five parishes in Fremont, two of the four in Concord, one of the two in Castro Valley and one of the two in Union City.

Meanwhile, in Oakland, the seat of the diocese, abuse was reported at only two of the 19 parishes -- or 11 percent.

"It makes sense there are more (in smaller parishes)," McNevin said. "When guys get accused, they don't get promoted to high parishes -- they get kicked out to places in the diocese where they will be out of the way."

Accused clergy members served nearly everywhere, however.

While abuse was reported in 18 of the 37 cities with parishes, accused clergy members served in 30 of them. They served in nearly three-quarters of the parishes in Oakland -- the same percentage as the diocese as a whole.

Still, the parishes where the most accused clergy members served over the years were generally in small towns.

Five served at Holy Spirit in Fremont, and four served at St. Alphonsus Liguori in San Leandro, Our Lady of the Rosary in Union City, Most Holy Rosary in Antioch, Corpus Christi in Piedmont, St. Catherine of Sienna in Martinez and St. Columba in Oakland.

By far the greatest number of accused clergy members, though, served at Salesian High School in Richmond, with nine. Five served at Bishop O'Dowd in Oakland, three at De La Salle in Concord and three at Moreau in Hayward.

In all, accused priests and members of religious orders served in 61 of the 86 parishes, or 71 percent.

The vast scope of the crisis is not unique to the Diocese of Oakland, however.

In 2005, the Los Angeles Times found that accused clergy members served in about three-quarters of the 288 parishes in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles from 1950 to 2003. The Arizona Republic in 2003 reported that accused priests served in nearly half of the 88 parishes in the Diocese of Phoenix from 1970 to 2002.

'Exercises in leadership'

The first lawsuits were filed against the diocese in the early- and mid-1990s. A decade later, Freitas, Kiesle, Ponciroli and other priests were arrested in the wake of the Boston scandal in 2002. The next year, victims filed a flurry of lawsuits after the Legislature lifted the statutes of limitations for such civil cases for a year.

In response to the burgeoning crisis, Vigneron, the new Bishop of Oakland, held the apology services at 20 parishes throughout the diocese from 2004 to 2006, naming 12 priests.

While the services fell far short of identifying all accused priests or the full scope of the abuse, they drew praise from many victims and their advocates, who saw it as a positive step.

Vigneron "has been supportive of victims," Simons, the attorney who has represented many victims, said. "He has sincerely expressed heartfelt apologies in apology ceremonies. Those were all exercises in leadership by the new bishop."

However, not all victims were satisfied. But for many, Vigneron's actions stood in stark contrast to the wall of secrecy they had faced for decades.

During a 2005 deposition, a plaintiffs attorney asked former bishop Cummins if he had ever publicly identified any accused priests before his retirement.

"I don't think that's the approach we took," he responded. "What we did do is invite those who were victims, and especially in those parishes, to please come forward if they felt that that was what they wished. I don't think we went in the other direction of announcing the whole docket on (them), no."

Attorney Jeffrey Anderson asked: "Have you ever, to this day, ever taken any initiative to make the private facts that a priest was an offender, and that you knew it, known to the public?"

"No," Cummins responded.

Former staff writer Jonathan Jones contributed to this story.

exposemolesters said...

I think it's outrageous that so called "gedolim" can ruin and destroy lives and then get a free pass. Enough of this "don lekaf zecus" garbage!

R' Aaron Schechter said...

http://www.ouradio.org/index.php/ouradio/comment/11903/

Rabbi Aharon Schechter, Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshiva Chaim Berlin, participates in a thoughtful teen Q&A with teens at the 2006 NCSY National Yarchei Kallah. Recorded on December 28, 2006.

baruch dayan haemes said...

Rav Elya Boruch Finkel zt'l

Rabbi Yona Metzger said...

How dare they do this to me!
---
Legislative change to keep rabbi from heading rabbinic courts
Matthew Wagner , THE JERUSALEM POST Mar. 31, 2008

A legislative amendment expected to be passed at the last minute will keep Chief Ashkenazi Rabbi Yona Metzger from serving as head of the rabbinic courts, a position for which he lacks formal training.

The Knesset Interior Affairs and Environment Committee ratified an amendment to the Chief Rabbinate Law Monday that allows the two chief rabbis to refrain from rotating.

The law will come up for vote in the Knesset this week before spring break. The two rabbis were to rotate next week.

Presently the law obligates the two chief rabbis, who serve for 10 years, to rotate mid-term. Each is expected to serve two five-year terms, one as president of the rabbinic courts, which is responsible for conversions and divorces, and another as chairman of the rabbinate's rabbinic council, which is responsible for kosher supervision and weddings.

However, Metzger has no training as a rabbinic judge.

Michal Levi, a Justice Ministry legal adviser responsible for drafting the amendment, said that the change would provide more flexibility. "The amendment permits chief rabbis who lack the proper training to serve as a judge to forgo the rotation," Levi said.

MK Yossi Beilin (Meretz) said he opposed the amendment because it was being passed specifically for Metzger, who was the first chief rabbi chosen who lacked the necessary credentials to serve all the functions expected of a chief rabbi.

MK David Amsalem (Shas), who supported the amendment, said in response that "serious reforms in the fields of kashrut supervision and the courts are in the process of being implemented and it would be a shame to interrupt them."

Metzger, who was educated in religious Zionist institutions, was elected to the rabbinate with the backing of haredi rabbis. Sources close to the rabbinate told The Jerusalem Post in the past that Metzger received haredi backing after agreeing to acquiesce to haredi rabbinic authority on various halachic matters.

Orthodox Union said...

General Mordechai Piron fought in four Israeli wars without a grenade, M-16 or Uzi. Armed with a holy sefer Torah and the power of an encouraging word, for thirty-four years the former chief rabbi of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) placed himself in mortal danger on front line after perilous front line to support thousands of Israeli soldiers in their time of greatest need.

http://www.ou.org/index.php/jewish_action/article/38172/

Mir Yeshiva said...

Mir Yeshiva Head, Teacher Rabbi Boruch Elya Finkel, Dead at 60
25 Adar Bet 5768, 01 April 08 05:49
by Hana Levi Julian

(IsraelNN.com) Shock waves are rushing through the yeshiva world as the news spreads: a dean of one of the leading Torah institutions of Israel is gone.

Rabbi Elya Boruch Finkel, one of the heads of the Mir Yeshiva, passed away suddenly after suffering a massive heart attack Monday morning in Jerusalem.

The rabbi, age 60, led and taught in one of the most prominent and oldest yeshivas in Israel, Mir Yerushalayim. “The Mir,” as it is known, is also considered the largest yeshiva in the world, with some 5,000 post-high school students studying Torah, including married rabbinical students.

Rabbi Finkel was known to have always been intimately involved with his students.

“He was a paradigm of care and kindness and truth,” said one woman in the Mir community. “Individuals would come to him for advice and he knew what was going on in their lives – we’re talking about a man who directed a yeshiva with thousands of students, remember,” she added.

Rabbi Finkel held councils in his home on a regular basis for the older boys so they could discuss various personal issues with him as well.

"The loss is incalculable," said a local kollel student at another Jerusalem yeshiva.

PA Terrorist Shot Dead By Quick-Thinking Civilian said...

25 Adar Bet 5768, 01 April 08 05:57
by Nissan Ratzlav-Katz

(IsraelNN.com) A Palestinian Authority terrorist was shot dead late Monday afternoon as he attempted to stab two people at a bus stop near Shiloh, 20 miles north of Jerusalem. The armed civilian who put an end to the attack is a school principal from the town of Itamar.

After 5:30 p.m. on Monday afternoon, an Arab man approached the Shiloh Junction bus stop and began talking to two people, an adult and a teenager, who were waiting there. After a short conversation in broken English and Hebrew, which aroused the suspicion of the two, the 16-year-old young man decided to move away, behind a concrete barrier at the bus stop while the older man placed his hand on his personal weapon.

At that point, the attacker suddenly pulled out a six-inch knife and tried to stab the adult Israeli. In response, the would-be victim drew his personal weapon and shot the terrorist, knocking him off his feet and wounding him. When the terrorist then reached into his shirt, the civilian interpreted the motion as a possible attempt to detonate an explosive vest and he shot again, this time killing his attacker. It later turned out that the PA resident was reaching for a second, concealed knife.

Military and police forces alerted to the attack arrived at the junction and radioed for an emergency medical response unit. The responding Magen David Adom (MDA) team pronounced the terrorist dead at the scene.

another lawsuit against kolko and margo said...

Fifth sex suit filed against N.Y. yeshiva

Published: 03/31/2008

A fifth lawsuit was filed against a New York yeshiva alleged to have covered up the molestation of several students by a rabbi.

Two Miami attorneys filed the $10 million suit Monday against Yeshiva-Mesivta Torah Temimah in Brooklyn alleging that their client, identified only as John Doe No. 6, was abused on multiple occasions as a student in the mid-1990s by Rabbi Yehuda Kolko.

The suit claims that the yeshiva's head administrator, Rabbi Lipa Margulies, who is also named as a defendant, should have been aware of credible accusations against Kolko for at least 25 years prior to the plaintiff's alleged abuse.

Several former students have accused Kolko, a former teacher and assistant principal at the school, of sexual abuse. At least four other pending lawsuits have alleged that the school knew of Kolko's activities and took no action to protect the students.

Kolko was the subject of a 2006 story in New York magazine which said that molestation of young boys by rabbis was a "widespread problem" in the fervently Orthodox community. He is also facing criminal charges brought by the Brooklyn District Attorney's Office.

Debka said...

Hamas leader says civilians should be removed from Palestinian-Israel conflict

March 31, 2008, 1:00 PM (GMT+02:00)

The Israeli soldier Gilead Shalit (taken hostage by Hamas) is alive and well treated, Khalad Meshal, Hamas politburo chief, told Sky interviewer Tim Marshall in Damascus Sunday. He went on to say: “We renew our offer to Israel to let the civilian people from the two sides to be free from our conflict. Israel should respond to this offer.”

DEBKAfile comments: Meshaal seems to be offering to stop missile fire on Sderot, Ashkelon and Netivot while retaining the option of attacking military targets and the freedom to define them as such. Is he referring to Israeli border patrols and bases and strategic targets like power stations and fuel dumps serving the military?

He denied killing children and firing rockets at a kindergarten. “We don’t kill anyone deliberately,” the Hamas leader insisted. The suicide bombings began in response to “Israeli crimes,” he said. “We ask the international community for better weapons so that we can fire more accurately.”

His remarks offer an insight into ongoing Egyptian-Hamas negotiations, in which Israel is indirectly involved, on the slowdown of violence in the Gaza Strip.

Marshall began the interview by saying: 'You lost in 1948, you lost in 1967, you lost in 1973, you lost the first intifada, you lost the second intifada and now Gaza is a giant prison camp. When are you going to stop losing, compromise and give more than you think you should?'

“We lose because of Arab weakness,” was the reply. “We are going to win even if the power is not with us now.”

Chaim said...

I would like to see YTT turned into a rubble of dirt. Every time I pass by that building I become nauseated. Ditto for YOB.

Aaron Schechter the ass said...

Can't I get some respect?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rabbi

Rabbi, in Judaism, means a religious ‘teacher’, or more literally, ‘my great one’, when addressing any master. The word Rabbi derives from the Hebrew root word רַב, rav, which in biblical Hebrew means ‘great’, used in many senses, including the sense of a ‘master’ and apprentice, whence someone who is a distinguished ‘teacher’. Sephardic and Yemenite Jews pronounce this word רִבִּי ribbī; the modern Israeli pronunciation רַבִּי rabbī is derived from a recent (18th century) innovation in Ashkenazic prayer books, although this vocalization is also found in some ancient sources. Other varieties of pronunciation are rəvī, rubbī,[citation needed] and, in Yiddish, rebbə.

Originally in Hebrew, Rabbi (‘my Master’) was a proper term of address while speaking to a superior, in the second person similar to a vocative case. While speaking about a superior, in the third person, one could say Ha-Rav (‘the Master’) or Rabbo (‘his Master’). Later, the term evolved into a formal title for members of the Patriarchate, where it no longer means ‘my’ Master. Thus, the title gained an irregular plural form: רַבָּנִים Rabbanim (‘Rabbis’), and not רַבָּי Rabbai (‘my Masters’).

The word comes from the Semitic root R-B-B, and is cognate to Arabic ربّ rabb, meaning "lord" (generally used when talking about God, but also about temporal lords as well).

Rabbis stab at Shas' said...

Rabbis: Shas 'collaborating with the enemy'
Matthew Wagner , THE JERUSALEM POST Apr. 1, 2008

Shas and other government coalition members who permitted the transfer of armored cars and firearms to the Palestinian Authority are aiding and abetting terrorism and will lead to the shedding of Jewish blood, according to a Jewish legal decision issued by a group of hawkish rabbis this week.

The rabbis also called on IDF officers and soldiers to resist military orders to facilitate the transferral.

Defense Minister Ehud Barak (Labor) said last week he had agreed to the transfer of new military vehicles and equipment to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas's security forces as well as to the easing of travel restrictions for West Bank residents.

In addition, Palestinian police will receive Kalashnikov rifles, rubber bullets and night-vision equipment, according to Army Radio.

Barak said the roster included equipment for Abbas's forces, including his elite Presidential Guard, and new vehicles, some of them armored.

Barak's office said he discussed the items with PA Prime Minister Salaam Fayad but no details were provided regarding types or amounts.

The rabbinic decision which does not specifically mention Shas but indirectly targets the Sephardi haredi party as a government coalition member is another example of pressure from the Right on Shas to leave the government coalition. So far, Shas has managed to deflect right-wing criticism by proving that it can obtain concessions beneficial to the Right by remaining in the coalition.

Shas managed to remove the freeze on building in Givat Ze'ev, a northern Jerusalem neighborhood. Shas also received a promise from Prime Minister Ehud Olmert that a freeze on building in Betar Illit would be lifted.

However, the very fact that Shas remains in a government coalition that makes concessions to the Palestinian Authority, such as the removal of security checkpoints and other easing of restrictions, is considered a betrayal in the eyes of many right-wing rabbis.

The transferral of armored cars and firearms to the Palestinian Authority as a means of strengthening it vis a vis Hamas has aroused a group of rabbis to issue a halachic decision that deems Shas's political behavior unlawful according to Jewish law.

Chief Rabbi of Hebron-Kiryat Arba Dov Lior and Rabbi Meir Mazuz, head of the Kiseh Rachamim Yeshiva, an influential spiritual leader and kabbalist, were two of the most prominent signatories.

The other rabbis were Ya'acov Yosef, son of Shas mentor Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, David Druckman, rabbi of the Kiryat Motzkin neighborhood near Haifa and Shalom Dov Wolpe, a messianic Chabad rabbi.

"There is a severe prohibition against transferring to Arabs any kind of military equipment," wrote the rabbis. "Anyone who does so (whether by voting in favor of the transferral in the government or making it possible logistically) is an accomplice to bloodshed and a collaborator with the enemy."

In response, Shas spokesman Ro'i Lachmanovitch said that his party follows the halachic decisions of its own spiritual leaders.

"We are obligated to adhere to them and only to them. The halachic opinion of the right-wing rabbis will be published in a weekly called Eretz Yisrael Shelanu [The Land of Israel is Ours] which is distributed in synagogues across the nation.

The rabbis' decision was made public in response to the government's decision to transfer armored cars and guns to the Palestinian Authority as part of US-brokered peace negotiations.

"The present government is going ahead with the transferral despite clear evidence that Palestinian Authority police were responsible for several terrorist attacks against Jews recently. These include the murder of the righteous Ido Zoldan and Achikam Amichai and David Rubin, may God avenge their deaths. The government is doing this despite knowing that the guns will eventually find their way to Hamas soldiers."

moshe said...

These people who are defending Michael Hersh by blaming his twin boys as being "disturbed" have no legs to stand on. Even if it is true - how do you send your kid to Tranquility Bay? How? This place is a torture zone. Send him to a place where he can truly be helped; there are no shortage of qualified facilities that deal with "disturbed" juveniles. Hashem Yerachem that Aron 'Ass' Schechter could give his approval to such an atrocity. There is no valid excuse for this!

MK Shlomo Benizri said...

Benizri: I will not resign

MK Shlomo Benizri slams bribery conviction, claims will not resign until issue of moral turpitude determined. Calls charges against him 'biggest lie in history of Israel'

Amnon Meranda
Published: 04.01.08, 18:49 / Israel News

"I have been persecuted for the last eight years… anyone reading the court ruling has to ask, just where is this tremendous bribery offense?" said MK Shlomo Benizri (Shas) at a press conference on Tuesday. He added, "Why should I resign? There has been no verdict yet, and it has not been determined whether this bears a clause of moral turpitude."

Rabbi Herschel Schachter said...

Why is the JPOST attacking me? I speak the truth.
-----------------------------

Fatwas on prime ministers seems to be a specialty. The assassination of Yitzhak Rabin showed that when rabbis accuse a prime minister of acts punishable by death under traditional law, their followers may take them seriously. But that lesson seems lost on rabbis Hershel Schachter, Ovadia Yosef and Shalom Dov Wolpe.

http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1206632387065&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

fed up said...

Chaim Berliners are very arrogant in general. Guess it all trickles down from the top.

Anonymous said...

http://ajp.psychiatryonline.org/cgi/content/full/165/4/425

Full Text
Treatment of Depression by Maimonides (1138–1204): Rabbi, Physician, and Philosopher
Gesundheit et al. Am J Psychiatry.2008; 165: 425-428

Yisroel Belsky the putz said...

By now you know that if your husband refuses to give you a get, Mendel Epstein and myself are at your service, for a modest fee of course.
-------------------------------------

The Jerusalem Post Internet Edition

Rabbinic court blocks civil court intervention in aguna cases
Matthew Wagner , THE JERUSALEM POST Apr. 1, 2008

A recent decision by the Supreme Rabbinic Court has set back women's legal rights in divorce cases by decades, claim feminist advocacy groups. However, a rabbinic court legal adviser says the decision is not new, but based on ancient Jewish texts and a long tradition that cannot be contested.

Last month, the supreme rabbinic court ruled that it was unlawful for a woman in the middle of divorce proceedings in a rabbinic court to appeal to a civil court to speed up the divorce's conclusion.

In the decision, Rabbi Hagai Izirer, Rabbi Menahem Hashai and Rabbi Zion Algrably ruled that if the civil court intervened, the writ of divorce (get) that the husband issued as a result would be null and void.

The rabbis, quoting talmudic and other early rabbinic literature, said that civil courts were considered "a gentile entity," even if the judges were Jewish, and were therefore disqualified from coercing the husband in any way to give a get.

The most common form of coercion is monetary torts. The civil court forces the husband to pay his wife damages for delaying the get.

"A coerced get is permitted only by Jews," said the Supreme Rabbinic Court in its 26-page decision. "Coercion by gentiles, including civil courts, is forbidden because they do not represent the will of the rabbis."

It added that "attorneys who deal in family law should be advised to weigh carefully their recommendations to clients to file damage claims in the family court for get-refusal. Such recommendations are tantamount to malpractice, and it is doubtful that attorneys could avoid such claims [of malpractice], even if they were to have their clients sign waivers to that effect."

The court's ruling illustrates the tension between religion and state and the ongoing power struggle for jurisdiction between secular and religious courts.

All Jewish couples in the country must marry and divorce according to Jewish law. Rabbinic courts oversee the divorce process, though some aspects, such as child custody and monetary matters, can be settled in special civil family courts.

According to Jewish law, a Jewish woman may not remarry until her husband agrees to give her a writ of divorce. Only rabbinical courts can determine whether a get is kosher or not.

Some women, known as agunot or "chained" women, have been held captive by their intransigent husbands - sometimes out of spite and often in an attempt to secure a more favorable divorce settlement for themselves.

In response, women's organizations such as the Center for Women's Justice, an advocacy group that helps agunot, have initiated a legal innovation in which the civil courts are asked to force the husband to pay damages for delaying the get.

Attorney Susan Weiss, founder and director of the center, said she had begun asking the civil court for torts about eight years ago.

"Due to the negligence of the rabbinic courts, divorce cases drag on for years without a settlement," said Weiss. "In the meantime, women suffer. Getting the civil courts involved often forces the husband to cave in and give a get.

"In response, the rabbinic courts, who are interested in maintaining their jurisdictional hold, have begun threatening women," she went on. "The rabbis tell the women that the get will be disqualified if they dare to go to a civil court. Attorneys representing these women are accused of malpractice by the rabbinical court. It is a scandal."

She asserted that "if a man intentionally abuses his religious right to withhold a get from his wife, he causes her a civil wrong. He is intentionally inflicting emotional distress. He is infringing on his wife's life, liberties, rights and freedoms. That's why wives have the right to sue recalcitrant husbands for damages."

However, Shimon Ya'acobi, legal advisor to the rabbinic courts, said in response that the rabbis' decision was not issued out of a desire to maintain control, but as an intellectually honest legal opinion.

"Women's rights groups have an agenda," said Ya'acobi. "They are trying to undermine the entire rabbinic hegemony and open the way for civil divorces."

Ya'acobi predicted that the Supreme Court would not get involved.

"This is a purely religious matter fully within the jurisdiction of the rabbinic courts. The Supreme Court cannot come along and say that a get is kosher after the rabbinic court has already determined that it is not kosher."

Rabbi Avi Shafran said...

C'mon Woody. Next your going to sue me claiming you were a Rabbi before me.
-------------------------

Woody Allen sues over rabbi billboard

Published: 04/01/2008

Woody Allen is suing a clothing company for advertisements showing the actor dressed as a rabbi.

Allen filed a $10 million lawsuit Monday in U.S. District Court in Manhattan against American Apparel Inc. for using an image from one of the filmmaker's movies of him dressed as a rabbi.

The text of the billboard and online ads, which were published without Allen's consent, read "The Holy Rebbe" in Yiddish.

The billboards were put up last May in New York and Hollywood. Allen does not commercially endorse any products in the United States, the suit said.

Yankel Applecrap said...

This is wrong. Margo and TT acted with das torah and never knew kolko to be a child molester so they are innocent of all charges against them.
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

The Jerusalem Post Internet Edition

To tell or not to tell, that is the question
Stewart Weiss , THE JERUSALEM POST Mar. 30, 2008

It's the season for Orthodox scandal. From New York to Jerusalem, from Beit Shemesh to Melbourne, shocking tales of adultery and child abuse, infidelity and incest within the Jewish world are making front-page headlines. The latest incidents - a well-known cantor caught in the act of adultery; a mother of eight beating her two youngest to the point of hospitalization, with no recovery predicted for the toddler; a mother of 12, practicer and preacher of an extreme form of female modesty, allegedly whipping and humiliating her children, several of whom admitted to incestuous relationships; the principal of a prestigious Orthodox Melbourne school dismissed for sexual molestation - remind us once again that the Orthodox community is not immune to the plagues of the larger one.

Is it right and proper - constructive or destructive - to air this dirty linen in public, to name names, to splash the story for all to see? Or should we adopt the sha-shtill posture which castigates the whistle-blower?

The observant are fearful of transgressing the prohibition of lashon hara - gossiping, rumor-mongering and character assassination that provides passing prurient pleasure to the perpetrator but causes untold, indelible damage to the victim.

Rabbi Israel Meir HaCohen was known as the Chofetz Chaim, from the verse, "Who is a lover of life? He who guards his tongue from speaking evil." He popularized the notion that tight lips and forbearance - that is, not everything that can be said should be said - provides a sure path to integrity, kindness and Jewish unity. Often, the word not spoken is the truest word of all.

On other side of the equation is the public's right to know and the need to protect society from those perverse individuals who prey upon the young or vulnerable. Protecting others from being cheated by a con man or abused by a serial molester is a societal need that overrides the individual's right to privacy. Even the Chofetz Chaim permitted the release of information that protects a potential spouse or future employer from being victimized.

IN A FAMOUS incident, a well-known American rabbi was visited by a man who confessed that he had just murdered his wife. The rabbi asked the man to wait in his study while he instructed his secretary to hold all calls. He then promptly phoned the police and informed them that there was a killer in his synagogue.

Sanctuary? Rabbi-client confidentiality? "None of these apply," he explained, "when there is a menace to society on the loose. Our first responsibility is to take this killer off the streets before he kills someone else."

The cover-up can be even more disgraceful than the crime. In many cases, the abuses are widely known for some time before anything is done about them.

In the infamous Lanner case in New Jersey, numerous rabbinic officials were aware that this youth adviser was abusing young people, but were reluctant to come forward. They either "did not want to get involved," or felt the rabbi was too effective in his position to let him go. Only when someone of great courage stepped forward did the news come out; only when the story was picked up by a courageous editor - Gary Rosenblatt, in this case - did the case go to court, and justice, of a sort, was done.

THE PROBLEM with taking a hush-hush attitude is two-fold: Many sexual offenders will move on to a new city, a new job, and repeat their abuses there. The fox always tends to find a new hen-house. Secondly, without publicity, the victims may never be identified and helped.

Long ago, the Talmud (Moed Katan 17) discussed just this issue. A prominent scholar was alleged to have committed various sexual improprieties. While the rumors about him were widespread, the scholar was also an important member of the community who influenced budding young scholars.

The sage Rabbi Yehuda agonized over whether or not he should publicly condemn the man and ostracize him. Though this would justly punish him for his actions, it would also rob the community of a valuable asset and could create a hilul Hashem (desecration of God's name) when it became public. Rabbi Yehuda chose condemnation, and refused to repeal his decision.

Years later, on his deathbed, Rabbi Yehuda faced the scholar, and smiled.

"Do you now mock me as well as having condemned me?" asked the scholar.

"No," said the sage. "I smile because I had the courage to condemn you for your crime and to hold fast to my convictions. In heaven, that will hold me in good stead, and the angels will smile upon me, too."

There is little to laugh about in these lurid events. Let us just ponder, as we consider whether to reveal or conceal, whether the ultimate Judge will smile upon us for the path we take.

The writer is director of the Jewish Outreach Center of Ra'anana.

jocmtv@netvision.net.il

Rabbi Lipa Margulies said...

I warn the people that this is a groiseh chilul hashem and rechilus. It's mamash a chutzpah gedoylah. I at no time knew of yidi's sex romps mit the boys in the ytt boiler room and avadah nisht in mineh office.
------------------------------

http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1206632388524&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

NY yeshiva sued over 'sexual abuse'
Michal Lando, the Jerusalem Post, New York , THE JERUSALEM POST Apr. 2, 2008

A Brooklyn yeshiva and its head administrator are being sued for $10 million over alleged sexual abuse by a rabbi who taught there for several decades.

The lawsuit is the fifth to be filed against Yeshiva Torah Temimah and administrator Lipa Margulies alleging sexual abuse by Rabbi Yudi Kolko.

Kolko was arrested for a second time in September for allegedly molesting a boy at the yeshiva, and then released on bail.

He was previously charged with four counts of sexual abuse, including two felony counts, and with endangering the welfare of a child.

The latest case involves the alleged sexual abuse of a minor, identified as John Doe No. 6, who was enrolled at Torah Temimah between the ages of 11 and 13.

Lawyers say he was sexually abused by Kolko on a number of occasions at several locations, including inside the rabbi's car, and at the yeshiva in his office at the yeshiva and in the basement.

According to the lawsuit, John Doe says that often, when Kolko would press himself up against him in a sexual manner, he would ask, "Does it hurt?"

Attorneys Adam Horowitz and Michael Dowd allege that Margulies knew of allegations that Rabbi Kolko was sexually abusing boys at Torah Temimah years before John Doe No. 6 was a student there.

"Despite the fact that Rabbi Margulies knew of allegations that Rabbi Kolko was sexually abusing children and was unfit to be a Rabbi or teacher at Torah Temimah, he took no action to protect the young male students at his school and continued to give Rabbi Kolko unfettered access to young children," the lawyers said in a press release.

The alleged abuse dates back to the 1980s, and the lawsuit claims Margulies engaged in "tactics of intimidation, threats and coercion and misrepresentations" over years with the "intent of squelching any complaints."

"In this case, our contention is that there were countless instances of notice to Rabbi Margulies about the conduct of Kolko," Dowd said. "His response has been threatening people who made complaints."

Such cases could be compared to recent allegations against the Catholic Church, said Jeffrey Herman, a lawyer involved in previous lawsuits filed against the yeshiva.

"It's similar in the sense of an insular community where these things, unfortunately, allegations that have been around for a long time, never made it to the judicial court system outside the community," Herman said.

What was different in the yeshiva case, according to Herman, was the lack of an "institutional" cover-up.

"This is one yeshiva, which has no connection to other Jewish institutions," he said.

The attorney for Yeshiva Torah Temimah, Avraham Moskowitz, told The Jerusalem Post he had not yet been served with the lawsuit.

In the past, Moskowitz has denied all allegations against the yeshiva. Regarding an earlier lawsuit in 2006, Moskowitz told JTA that the yeshiva "adamantly denies the allegations in the complaints and is sure that when the cases are over, the yeshiva will be vindicated."

schechter you fool said...

More bad news for local private home of safety
Tuesday, 01 April 2008
A local facility for troubled teens is again in the news overseas.

This follows allegations of the abuse of the son of a high-ranking member of the Jewish Community in New York, by staff at the school.

Isaac Hersh, 16, a Brooklyn boy and a former guest at the facility is back in the U.S. a week after allegations surfaced that he was being abused by staff.

A New York Newspaper said he arrived in New Jersey early Friday morning on a private jet.

According to family members, a New York psychologist, examined Hersh for 90 minutes in Jamaica and concluded that he had been physically and mentally abused.

The "Jewish Week" newspaper reported that the psychologist, a Rabbi and two other men flew here last Thursday after they learned that American officials were going to interview Hersh at the American Embassy in Kingston.

The embassy interview was allegedly in response to a federal lawsuit against the U.S. State Department alleging the boy was being abused at the Jamaican school.

The boy reportedly told consular staff and his escorts that he had been thrown on his face and that both hands were twisted behind him while five people sat on top of him, putting their fingers in his ears.

The 16-year-old also said he was punched in the stomach when he asked to borrow a pen from a counselor.

His father, Michael Hersh CEO of the Chevra Hatzalah Volunteer Ambulance Corps in New York later agreed by phone to have his son released and flown out of the country.

Yudi Kolko said...

14 years? how many years do I deserve?

Former DPP leader Tsai gets 14 years for sexual abuse
By Rich Chang
STAFF REPORTER
Wednesday, Apr 02, 2008, Page 3

The former director of the Democratic Progressive Party's (DPP) Sijhih City (汐止) chapter, Tsai Mao-hsiung (蔡茂雄), was yesterday sentenced to 14 years and two months in prison by the Taiwan High Court after being found guilty of sexually abusing three junior-high-school boys.

The court ordered that Tsai, 53, receive three years of behavioral therapy before beginning his jail sentence.

In making its ruling, the court said Tsai had caused his victims serious mental and physical distress. Another aggravating factor was that Tsai had not admitted his crimes, the court said.

Tsai is allowed to appeal his case to the Supreme Court.

The court said that Tsai, a married man, met "Boy A" at a convenience store in Sijhih shortly after the boy had graduated from elementary school in June 2004. Tsai invited the boy home with him and had sex with him later that day.

Tsai had since met the boy every two or three days for sex, the court said. Tsai was said to have paid the boy between NT$300 and NT$500 for each sexual encounter.

The court said that in September 2004, Boy A had introduced Tsai to "Boy B." Tsai took Boy B to his office, offered him alcohol and drugs and then abused him, the court said. Later that month, Boy A introduced Tsai to "Boy C," who was also abused.

In March 2005, Boy A's parents became suspicious about their son's disposable income and confronted him. He admitted what had happened and his parents went to the police.

Tsai was arrested in July 2005 during a raid on his residence and office in Sijhih. At the same time, police found naked photographs of Boy A and Boy B, which revealed minor wounds on the boys' bodies, together with drugs and sex toys.

The court said Tsai had threatened to hurt Boy A's family when he learned that they had filed charges against him. He also tried to bribe the family to withdraw their accusations, the court said.

Tsai was expelled from the DPP after his arrest in July 2005.

In a statement issued at the time, the party said it would prevent "serious" criminals from becoming elected DPP officials.

"A person with a serious criminal record will be prohibited from becoming a DPP official," said Lee Yi-yang (李逸洋), then DPP secretary-general.

chaim penetration scheinberg said...

Are we sure there was penetration in this case?
---------------
courant.com/news/local/hc-ctreardon0401.artapr01,0,3406893.story
Courant.com
Eight More Sue St. Francis In Sex Abuse Case

By DANIEL P. JONES

Courant Staff Writer

April 1, 2008

Eight more people — including a man who claims Dr. George Reardon raped him repeatedly — have filed a lawsuit against St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center alleging negligence in not preventing the prominent endocrinologist from sexually abusing them.

"It's just another example of the depravity of Reardon and the increasing toll that the hospital's failure to intervene has taken on innocent lives," lawyer Joel Faxon, whose firm represents 44 of the plaintiffs, said Monday.

Reardon, who died in 1998, practiced medicine at St. Francis from 1963 to 1993, when he resigned in the face of accusations that he molested and inappropriately photographed children for decades, starting in the 1950s. A massive cache of slides and videos showing children in what police described as pornographic poses was discovered in November in Reardon's former West Hartford home.

Since then, some 85 men and women who say Reardon abused them have filed complaints against the hospital, according to lawyers involved in the case.

The Stratton Faxon law firm in New Haven filed the latest lawsuit on behalf of the eight new plaintiffs in Superior Court in Waterbury, where Judge William T. Cremins is presiding over the cases as part of a complex litigation docket. The plaintiffs' lawyers and lawyers for the hospital agreed last week to try to settle the cases through mediation.

Many of the people suing the hospital say Reardon fondled them and photographed them in degrading poses. They also say the doctor lured them by telling them or their parents they would be advancing science by participating in a growth study, according to the plaintiff's lawyers.

No such studies were presented during medical hearings in the early 1990s when Reardon's attorneys were fighting for his license.

The man who alleges Reardon raped him repeatedly — identified in the latest lawsuit as John Doe no. 32, was a teenage patient when the incidents took place in Reardon's hospital examining room in the late 1970s and early 1980s, Faxon said. The man is now in his 40s and lives in the Hartford area, he said.

"He leads a very unfortunate, disorganized life at this point," Faxon said of the man.

The eight new plaintiffs, six men and two women, all allege that Reardon fondled them and took lewd pictures of them in his hospital office.

Barry Feldman, general counsel and senior vice president for the hospital, said, "It would be inappropriate for us to discuss details surrounding a specific case while in litigation."

Contact Daniel P. Jones at dpjones@courant.com.

THE CANADIAN PRESS said...

At least 146 Canadians charged overseas for child sexual abuse: Justice Dept.

April 1, 2008 - 4:43 pm

By: Camille Bains, THE CANADIAN PRESS

VANCOUVER - Canada is one of the worst countries in the world when it comes to enforcement of its own child-sex tourism law, says a law professor who has analyzed information obtained from the Justice Department.

At least 146 Canadians have been charged overseas for sexually abusing children, Benjamin Perrin, of the University of British Columbia, has found.

And many more Canadians have likely bribed their way out of being charged in jurisdictions such as Thailand and Cambodia where children are easy prey for foreign pedophiles, he said.

The data on Canadians charged abroad between 1993 and 1997 was released to Perrin through a Freedom of Information request.

"To date, the Canadian policy has been to not aggressively, or even actively, enforce our own child-sex tourism law and that needs to change," Perrin said Tuesday.

"It's one of the most underenforced provisions of the Criminal Code," he said. "It was brought in to confront a serious transnational crime and this is very concerning."

Canada's child-sex tourism law was enacted in 1997 and bolstered five years later to no longer require the foreign country where allegations of sexual abuse took place to consent to the charges.

Donald Bakker is the only person in Canada to be convicted under the law after he pleaded guilty in 2005.

He received a 10-year sentence for 10 sexual assaults on girls between ages seven and 12 in Svay Pak, Cambodia, where he videotaped his horrific exploits.

But the investigation of Bakker began only after he was arrested in Vancouver for unrelated offences and police found video evidence of him abusing children.

RCMP Staff Sgt. Rick Greenwood, of the RCMP's National Child Exploitation Co-ordination Centre in Ottawa, said police forces around the world are overwhelmed with the number of child-sex cases in developing countries that include Costa Rica and India.

"Internationally, we've got to be set up better," Greenwood said of the Mounties' ability to share intelligence and properly train investigators.

"We are looking at that quite seriously."

"What we're trying to do now is respond for the future so we're better aligned with our international partners," he said, referring to agencies such as Interpol, the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security in the United States.

According to the U.S. branch of EPCAT - End Child Prostitution, Child Pornography and Trafficking of Children for Sexual Purposes - Canada is among 44 countries with extraterritorial legislation that allows for the prosecution of its own citizens for sexual crimes committed in other jurisdictions.

But Canada does not conduct its own investigations of child sex abuse overseas. The foreign government must provide Canada with enough evidence to support charges.

Perrin called Canada an "international embarrassment," saying officials often don't ask for any evidence from other jurisdictions.

He said compared to countries like Australia and the United States, Canadian prosecutors are failing to lay charges against suspects in child-sex crimes abroad.

The Justice Department refused comment on the lack of charges in Canada despite several requests from The Canadian Press.

The most recent case of child-sex tourism involves a Quebec aid worker and another man who face multiple charges involving the sexual abuse of children in a Haitian orphanage.

Denis Rochefort, 59, and Armand Huard, 64, will make their next court appearance on April 11 in Quebec City.

Perrin said the case came to light only after the Haitian government contacted the United Nations, which informed the RCMP.

Often, he said, Canadians who see foreign children as easy targets use their Canadian passports as "get-out-of-jail free cards" by moving from country to country to escape detection and that the real number of sexual abuse case will never be known.

Perrin said part of the problem is that the RCMP's liaison officer program doesn't have enough resources in sex-tourism hot spots like Southeast Asia to send a clear message that Canada has a law prohibiting its citizens from exploiting children in developing countries that aren't able to protect themselves from pedophiles.

"The local police and judiciaries are often infant democracies and they are undermined when corruption from western tourists and businessmen allows them to escape charges."

The Justice Department's information on the number of Canadians charged in other countries with child-sex crimes does not include their identities, where in Canada they're from, where they committed their alleged offences or if they eluded other charges by paying officials.

"The very significant concern is that in countries where corruption is rampant - and in many developing countries that is unfortunately the case - Canadians are able to buy their way out of even being charged," Perrin said.

While the identities of suspected sex tourists who molest children overseas are rarely known, the case of Maple Ridge, B.C., resident Christopher Neil has made international headlines.

Neil, 32, was arrested in Thailand last October for allegedly abusing a nine-year-old boy after a worldwide manhunt when Interpol unscrambled his swirled digital images from the Internet.

As Neil awaits his next court date in Bangkok in June, another Canadian, 54-year-old Orville Mader of Abbotsford, B.C., is wanted on a warrant in Thailand for allegedly abusing at least three boys.

But while Neil sits in a Thai jail, Mader slipped back into Canada last year and was arrested at Vancouver International Airport.

He has been charged in Thailand, but the Thais have not formally asked Canada to return Mader and Canada has not charged him here.

Simon Buck, a Vancouver criminal lawyer and member of Beyond Borders, said the non-government group will seek intervener status in the case of Kenneth Klassen, the second Canadian to face child-sex tourism charges for allegedly exploiting girls as young as nine in various jurisdictions including Cambodia.

Klassen, 57, of Burnaby, B.C., is scheduled to go on trial in July.

Buck said prosecutors in every province need to approve more charges against alleged child molesters who conduct their business outside Canada's borders.

"It's probably the resources of the Crown in combination with the perception that they're difficult cases to prove and whether that's the correct perception I don't know because it hasn't been tested (at a trial)," he said.

Avrohm Mondrowitz said...

There are so many sex predators out there, why did you have to pick on me, it's just not fair!

................................

The Division of Youth Services has reported 572 child abuse cases throughout the CNMI last fiscal year, the highest of which is child sexual abuse, with a reported 156 cases from October 2006 to September 2007.

The 156 reported cases are a sharp spike compared to the 44 cases reported in 2000.

According to Child Protection Services supervisor Laura Ogumuro, the CNMI is seeing a rising trend in the area of child sexual abuse.

In past fiscal years, the total number of sexual abuse cases “is not even half of the 156 reported in fiscal year 2007.”

For the new fiscal year-October 1, 2007 to present-there have already been 42 reported cases of child sexual abuse.

“That's a very huge number to begin with,” Ogumoro said.

The DYS report, “Statistical Summary of Children, Youth and Families,” noted that 112 cases of emotional abuse were reported to the agency in 2007; 115 cases of physical neglect; 25 cases of medical neglect; 78 cases of education neglect, and 108 cases of physical abuse.

Ogumoro said the reported cases of child physical abuse in the CNMI has always been high.

She said, though, that the increasing number of child abuse is a sign that more people have come forward to report them as opposed to 10 years ago, when people would rather keep quiet.

Ogumoro said that she believes that there are more cases of child abuse going unreported.

“We want people to know that for every report that comes in, identities are protected,” she said.

She emphasized that the complete elimination of child abuse in the Northern Marianas would require the all-out support from the community.

“We cannot do it alone. We are urging people to come out and report abuse cases to the DYS or to the police. Don’t be afraid to reach out to people who can help you. Community involvement is very important,” Ogumoro said.

She said that there has also been an increase in teenage pregnancies and female teenagers shacking up with boyfriends who are three years or older than they are.

DYS is still in the middle of compiling the report for both types of cases.

April is Child Abuse Awareness Month. The event seeks to increase community involvement in preventing child abuse in the CNMI.

exposemolesters said...

It's sick and it's only getting sicker!
================================

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/970762.html

Netivot mother held for sexual abuse of 2 young sons
By Mijal Grinberg and Ruth Sinai

A mother of eight children from Netivot was arrested yesterday on suspicion that she sexually abused two of her sons, 8 and 11. Police said she admitted to the charge.

The woman, 38, was brought before the Be'er Sheva Magistrate's Court yesterday for a remand hearing.

Last year the children were removed from their home by court order and transferred to boarding schools and foster families after social workers determined that their mother was mentally unstable and could not control her children. The parents are divorced and the father does not live in Netivot.

"In the investigation she admitted that she had sex with her two sons on a one-time basis," said Netivot deputy police commander Ron Yehuda.

"She said her justification for the acts was that she wanted to take revenge on her husband."

The case will be sent to the prosecution by the end of the week to prepare an indictment, police said.

The authorities were alerted to the alleged sexual abuse when officials at the Bnei Brak boarding school where the 11-year-old boy was studying noticed that he was engaging in sexual behavior inappropriate for his age. The boy told a social worker that his mother forced him to have sex with her during one of his visits home.

The Netivot social services department was informed, and put a halt to the children's visits home and reported the incident to the police.

The Welfare Ministry said the information was passed on a month ago and that it was unclear why the woman was not arrested until now.

Rabbi E. Byrks said...

I'm so happy the police don't have enough evidence to arrest me. I'm laughing that I can get away with sexually abusing that kid who committed suicide.

Two face sex abuse charges

BY ART BUKOWSKI
abukowski@record-eagle.com



Traverse City -- A Grawn man who allegedly documented his sexual encounter with a teenage girl faces nine child sex abuse counts.

Authorities also charged an East Lansing man for his alleged involvement.

James Michael Saiers, 19, of Grawn, is charged with five counts of possession of child sexually abusive material, two counts of child sexually abusive activity, and similar charges relating to conspiracy, distribution and using a computer to commit a crime.

East Lansing resident Daniel McNamara, 22, is charged with two counts of child sexually abusive activity and one count of conspiracy to commit child sexually abusive activity.

A Grand Traverse sheriff's detective investigated the case, and charges were issued Friday. Neither man had been arrested as of Monday morning.

Court records show a girl, 16, went to a Barlow Street apartment in December 2007 and allegedly "engaged in sexual activity" with McNamara and Saiers. The men allegedly snapped dozens of pictures with a digital camera during the meeting.

Saiers allegedly sent nearly 80 images to the girl over an instant messaging system, and sheriff's Detective Todd Heller allegedly found those images on the girl's laptop, court records show.

Heller obtained a warrant and searched Saiers' residence in February. He removed three hard drives from Saiers' computer and allegedly found "hundreds" of images of child pornography.

Heller allegedly found several images and videos of very young children engaged in explicit sexual acts, along with 87 images of the teenage girl.

Shloime Mandel said...

I agree with Margulies. This is such a chilul hashem. How do we really know that nussbaum and kolko did this? Were there two koshurer adim who can testify that they saw boys getting molested by these chushiveh rebbeim?

I know what exposemolesters is going to answer me that I caused it because I intimidated victims and their parents. That I am involved in the cover-up.

Let me remind you that taking about this is mamesh a big chilul hashem. You're supposed to don me lekaf zechus. I'm a gadol!

Child sexual abuse a 'horrifying thing' said...

Child sexual abuse a 'horrifying thing'

By Sarah Schulz
sarah.schulz@theindependent.com

Sexual abuse cases are always difficult.

Perpetrators often prey on the most vulnerable people in our communities, and the majority of the time, particularly when young children are involved, the offender and the victim know each other.

"It's a horrifying thing," Hall County Attorney Mark Young said. "As adults, we'd just as soon believe it didn't happen, especially when kids are involved."

Child sexual abuse is defined as the forcing, coercing or persuading of a child to engage in any type of sexual intercourse, including sexual contact and noncontact, such as exposure to pornography, voyeurism or communicating in a sexual manner by phone or the Internet, according to Darkness to Light, a nonprofit organization aimed at raising awareness of child sexual abuse.

Nearly 70 percent of sexual assaults nationwide occur to children age 17 and younger. The median age for reported sexual assault is 9 years old, according to Darkness to Light.

As with most sexual assault cases, the victims and the offenders usually know each other. In cases where both are juveniles, they are often related or have some close association, Young said. It is also common for sexual offenders to prey on vulnerable people, such as the very young or the developmentally delayed, he said.

In more than 90 percent of sexual assault cases nationwide involving children, with both juvenile and adult offenders, the child and the child's family know the offender, according to Darkness to Light.

Young estimates his office receives 40 referrals each year from law enforcement for sexual assault of a child, including both juvenile and adult perpetrators. He also estimated that charges are filed in 30 to 35 cases each year, he said.

In addition, four to five cases where both the offender and the victim are juveniles are referred to his office each year by law enforcement. Of those, charges are filed in three to four cases, he said.

As with any case, prosecutors have to look at whether they have enough evidence to support the charge and bring a case to its conclusion. They also have to determine if the case should be filed in juvenile or adult court, he said.

Young's personal guideline generally involves filing charges in adult court when the offender is age 16 or older. However, the final say lies with the judge, who can send a case to juvenile court, Young said.

Young bases the decision, in part, on availability of long-term treatment. Punishment is involved in both courts, but the juvenile court only has jurisdiction over a case until the convicted juvenile turns 18, he said. In many cases involving sexual assault and abuse, long-term treatment is necessary, and the court may only be able to order such extended treatment through the adult court.

Child victims are difficult to work with when it comes to getting evidentiary information. They often have difficulty relating things in a chronological fashion, he said.

To aid in making children comfortable and to ease the traumatic nature of sexual abuse, interviews can be conducted at the Child Advocacy Center.

Director Sondra Schwehn said the center, which also offers advocacy services, focuses on children age 18 and younger from Hall, Howard, Merrick, Hamilton, Adams, Greeley, Garfield, Wheeler, Clay, Nuckolls and Webster counties.

In the last few years, workers at the center have seen an increased number of juvenile sex offenders. Most of them are teen males with victims age 9 and younger, she said.

Part of the reason for the increase could be the education children are receiving about what's OK and what's not OK for others to do to them. That education could be helping make children more comfortable about reporting when they've been touched inappropriately, she said.

Interviews at the Child Advocacy Center are conducted by trained interviewers who often work for law enforcement or the Department of Health and Human Services, she said.

On the flip side, the sexual abuse of perpetrators sometimes comes to light as attorneys begin dispositions or during sentencing. However, such statements are to be taken with caution because research has shown that many adult offenders make claims of significant sexual abuse to gain sympathy at their sentencings, Young said.

Schwehn said there is a concern that offenders were victims too, especially if they are age 12 to 14 and have had multiple victims. The question of where they learned the behavior arises, she said.

"Did something happen to that kid that went unnoticed or unreported?" Schwehn said. "How did they learn so young and become an offender? What can be done to address it?"

It can happen here

A 19-year-old Grand Island man is serving three to five years in prison for sexually assaulting his younger sister sometime between September 2006 and August 2007.

The 6-year-old girl was treated at St. Francis Medical Center and was later interviewed by law enforcement. She told officers her brother had sex with her after her mother had gone to work, according to court documents.

Another person also reported to police that he had seen the man, who was 17 or 18 years old when the assault occurred, touch the girl inappropriately.

The siblings' parents told officers that the teen had sexually assaulted his little brother about five years prior to the incidents with his sister, according to court documents.

Community Resources

The following community resources are available to help families and respond to concerns about sexual abuse or any type of child abuse:

Child Advocacy Center (offers interview and advocacy services), 385-5238

Hope Harbor (homeless shelter for women and children), 385-5190

Salvation Army (shelter for men), 382-4855

Heartland Court Appointed Special Advocates (help for abused/neglected children in the court system), 385-5125

Hall County Juvenile Services, 385-5124

Wellness Works/Por Su Salud (information on a variety of health/education topics), 398-5050

Building Nebraska Families (assistance for moving from welfare to work), 385-5088

Center for Advocacy and Resource Education/Youth Encouraging Support (for families with physical, mental or emotionally challenged children), (877) 225-0500

Girls and Boys Town Shelter, 381-4444

Heartland Visitation Center (supervised visitations, exchange point for parents), 385-5665

Mid-Plains Foster Care Services, 385-5555

exposemolesters said...

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/970765.html

02/04/2008
Social worker: Most ultra-Orthodox children who were sexually abused not treated
By Tamar Rotem

"Most cases of abuse in our community are not referred for treatment at all," says an ultra-Orthodox social worker, one of the few who treats ultra-Orthodox children and teens who are victims of sexual abuse. "It happens because children don't understand what happened to them. After all, they're not exposed to information on the subject in the media, and at home they don't talk about it. They are naive, and the parents lack awareness. This week, for example, a 16-year-old girl walked to the store and the storeowner attacked her, hugging and kissing her. It took her time to realize what this was. It's hard to understand, but she is from a very closed community. Her parents are cold and to the point. There are no hugs and kisses at home."

The social worker was describing the specific problems the ultra-Orthodox community faces in addressing sexual abuse. This week, police revealed their suspicions that a serial assailant was on the prowl in the Haredi city Bnei Brak, and said the locale has the highest rate of sex offenses in the country, by tens of percentage points.

These crimes persist under a veil of ignorance and shame.

"Most of the children don't talk about the abuse. But people start to sense a change in the children's behavior. They refuse to go to routine places, to school, to the grocery store. They suffer from insomnia and lose their appetites. They lash out suddenly at their parents.

"The child expects the parents to protect him, to identify and diagnose his distress, but they don't. The parents never even imagine that a problem exists. I, too, before I got into this field, didn't believe it. I thought, it can't happen in our circles. It's a false accusation, an exaggeration.

"The children who do divulge the secret are those who grow up in families where they feel safe, and aren't afraid they will be blamed for being bad children. The parents don't always know how to react. This week, a girl was followed home. The man groped her and threatened her not to yell. She was afraid to tell her father and when she finally did, the father yelled at her and didn't defend her.

"Many parents deny it. They tell the boy or girl, 'forget about it.' Most still don't go to the police or seek treatment because they are afraid that if it becomes known, this will cause even more damage. Treating ultra-Orthodox children focuses mainly on counseling the parents. It depends, of course, on the severity and duration of the abuse.

"In cases of long-term abuse, treatment is necessary. Young children receive treatment in the form of game or art therapy. Treatment for teens involves a combination of talking and some form of creative art.

"Among the ultra-Orthodox, children are more independent. In a family of 10 children, it's impossible to escort every child. But the parents don't even take this issue into consideration. It's not considered abuse in their world. They aren't aware of the dangers. Abuse of boys is more common in our community. It is possible that men have more opportunities to assault because of the separation of the sexes. Assaults at the mikveh are rare today. There isn't a single normal family that allows its child to go out alone. Parents also don't send their children to yeshivas with a dormitory.

"I don't know if there are more pedophiles among the ultra-Orthodox community than there are in any other community, but it's clear that assailants can cause more harm, because they can assault uninterrupted for years. This is because their victims don't report them. Usually if someone like this is caught, a teacher or a student, he is kicked out. They don't check further. Everyone worries about his children, and then almost certainly the abuser begins his assaults somewhere else."

Pope Benedict XVI said...

Pope loves kosher sweets

Jewish bakery in Rome is Benedict XVI's favorite place to indulge in cakes, deserts
Menachem Gantz

ROME - Pope Benedict XVI has a sweet tooth, and there is nothing like kosher cake to feed it. As it turns out, a renowned kosher bakery in Rome’s ancient Jewish ghetto is one of the pope’s favorite places to visit when it's time for desert.

Yisroel Gornish said...

whose hashgacha will this be under?
---------------------------

Kosher franks coming to Fenway

April 1, 2008

BOSTON --Red Sox fans who follow strict kosher dietary laws will be able to eat hot dogs at Fenway Park this year.

The Boston Herald reports that an automated vending machine in the concourse under the bleachers will be dispensing the kosher dogs.

Fenway already sells Hebrew National kosher dogs, but those are "kosher-style" and aren't prepared, packaged, shipped and cooked under supervision of a rabbi or kosher-certification agency.

The hot dogs in the "Hot Nosh" vending machine will be.

Shea and Yankee stadiums have kosher concession stands, and the Red Sox often receive requests for kosher food at Fenway.

The team's concessionaire, Aramark, says they'll start with one "Hot Nosh" machine, and may add more, depending on capacity and demand.

------

Information from: Boston Herald, http://www.bostonherald.com

moshe rubashkins said...

What exactly is inhumane about public slaughter?
...............................

Animal rights groups against Passover sacrifice

Movement threatens to take legal action against Jerusalem municipality, Jewish leaders planning to publicly slaughter animals
Kobi Nahshoni

The Temple movements' intention to hold a public slaughter of the Passover sacrifice was slammed by the animal rights movement, Let Animals Live.



The activists demanded that the event's coordinators cancel their plans, and sent letters to Jerusalem Mayor Uri Lupolianski, and to the Director of the Temple Institute, Yehuda Glick, threatening to sue if their demands were not met within 24 hours.


Kosher Slaughter
Jewish slaughter in danger, chief rabbi tells importers / Neta Sela
Rabbi Metzger initiates meeting with meat importers, asks them to pressure slaughterhouses in South America to adopt 'boxing' method which does not cause animals undue distress. 'The koshering organizations are under attack, and Jews are presented as cruel people,' he warns
Full story

According to Let Animals Live director, Reuben Ladianski, the law states that it is prohibited to abuse or torture animals, including slaughtering them in a cruel manner.



"Any use of animals for educational purposes must be approved by the committee for animal experimentation," Ladianski said. "And the law states that permission will not be granted if the goal of the experiment can be reached in other, more humane ways."


In his letters, Ladianski warned that the maximum penalty for infringement of this law is three years in prison. He also mentioned the halacha, which prohibits animal abuse, and cited halachic rulings dealing with the correct treatment of animals.



In his letter to the mayor Ladianski writes, "Performing a public act in which an animal is sacrificed, when one can just as easily use a dummy, is wrong and unnecessary.



"Before we assume legal action we request that you notify us within 24 hours that you have received this letter and do not plan to allow this slaughter in Jerusalem's jurisdiction."



Eti Altman, one of the founders of the Let Animals Live movement, told Ynet that in her opinion, "The event is pointless and suitable only for unenlightened countries.



"Apart from the fact that it constitutes abuse, the slaughter of animals before an audience is liable to threaten their sense of humanity, and may deepen the rift between religious and secular communities."

Rabbi Yosef Blau speaks the truth said...

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Page 1
CONFRONTING ABUSE IN THE ORTHODOX COMMUNITY
(This article first appeared in NEFESH)
By Rabbi Yosef Blau
It is no longer possible to ignore the tragic reality that sexual, physical and emotional
abuse exists within the Orthodox community. Recent revelations about rabbis and
teachers abusing adolescents, often continuing to abuse for decades, dramatically remind
us that our existing mechanisms are failing to deal with the problem. I am not aware of
any statistics which clarify whether the numbers of offenders is substantial, but even a
small number can traumatize hundreds of victims.
The full measure of the horrendous nature of abuse is not always apparent from a
technical halakhic perspective. Two teenagers touching each other inappropriately are
guilty of the same sin as a forty-year old rabbi touching a thirteen- year old female
student. We intuitively recognize that the rabbi has used his position as an authority
figure to manipulate a vulnerable child, though she is an adult according to halakha. A
pedophile who abuses minors even if he gets their approval is halakhicly a rapist but not
if he does the same with an adolescent boy or girl.
It is even more difficult to pinpoint the sin when dealing with emotional abuse and
manipulation. While one can make similar technical arguments in other areas of halakha,
its significance in this context is its use as cover for the many who do not want to deal
with the full implications of confronting rabbinical abuse. Not wanting to see themselves
as lacking sympathy for victims, people can claim to be concerned about preserving
halkhic standards. How rare it is to have two witnesses who saw the abuse.
Page 2
Even when the pattern of abuse is clear the question remains how to effectively deal with
the abuser in a way that at least limits his ability to move elsewhere and continue to abuse
new people. Schools fire abusive teachers who then move to another community and
start teaching (and abusing) in the new yeshiva. Going public is seen as causing a chilul
Hashem and going to secular authorities as mesira.
Virtually all poskim agree that if there is danger to future victims then there is no
halakhic issue of mesira but practically the taboo of mesira remains. Victims are
discouraged from coming forward on other grounds as well. It will hurt potential
shidduchim, not only for the victim but for members of his family as well. Compassion
is expressed for the reputations of members of the abuser’s family as well. The
probability that the family members may have suffered abuse themselves and suffer from
being in ongoing contact with the abuser, is not understood.
Taking the accusation to a Beis Din unfortunately is rarely effective. Few rabbis have
any training in recognizing abuse and the rabbinical courts have no investigative arm.
Some abusers are charismatic leaders and have followers who will say whatever they ask
them to say. Perjury to a Beis Din is not punished and in many cases the witness, in
support of his mentor, has no difficulty with distorting what occurred. The cultic element
in the guru’s leadership is hard for us to acknowledge. A rabbi promoting Judaism is
seen as incapable of being a cult leader.
Newspapers, particularly Jewish newspapers are assumed to be anti-Orthodox. Speaking
to them is almost the act of a traitor. Yet at the present time the media has played a
Page 3
primary role in the increased awareness of this problem and an abuser whose name that
has appeared in the media is unlikely to be hired by a new school or youth movement.
Two recent cases point to differing approaches now being used. In one story from Israel
a commission including a rabbi, a psychologist and a judge evaluated allegations and the
accused was fired from his teaching position. He hired a lawyer and is fighting for
reinstatement. The Israeli media have picked up the story. A recent article in Maariv
broadened the discussion to quote varying views about rabbis counseling married women.
The other case involved allegations that had been investigated twenty years ago and a
resulting agreement that an individual would leave Jewish education, which was not
effectively enforced. After two decades it became difficult to reconstruct what had
occurred. Supporters of the accused spoke freely to the media while victims used
pseudonyms. New allegations surfaced and a major expose appeared in the papers and a
new Beit Din was formed to decide how to deal with the accusations. While no formal
announcement has been made, their apparent decision was to send the case to a religious
court in Israel that will deal with the charges.
Despite growing awareness and concern no consensus has yet emerged. Rabbis are not
trained to recognize abuse nor given an approach to aid them in responding when they
realize that it is occurring. Principals are not equipped to respond to accusations against
teachers in their schools. Rabbinical organizations do not have rules of appropriate
conduct. Accused abusers retain memberships in these organizations without any process
to remove their names.
Page 4
Our community has not been educated to recognize abuse nor to appreciate the ongoing
trauma of victims. Headlines in newspapers are not effective educational tools. Often
the response is to express anger at the paper and then ignore the abuse. Until the
mentality of the community changes little progress will be made.
Even if a method will be developed to get rabbinical approval for victims to go to the
police much of the problem will remain. Not every manifestation of abuse involves
criminal behavior. “Rabbis” who seduce women as part of outreach or marital therapy
are not guilty of a punishable offence. Proper utilization of secular authorities is a
necessary step but clearly not a total solution.
In Chicago, after there were a number of serious incidents, a special Beit Din, whose
members are respected across the Orthodox spectrum, was established to deal with
accusations of abuse. Similar rabbinical courts in other major cities, whose judges would
be trained to recognize abuse and would have appropriate mental health professionals as
consultants, should be introduced. Creating special rabbinical courts is a powerful
statement that a serious problem needs to be addressed.
Nefesh professionals have a critical role to play in educating the Orthodox community,
in treating and supporting victims and in serving as consultants for schools and
organizations. Only people who are trained can lead a systematic campaign explaining
the nature of abuse and the need to confront it openly. Stigma has to be removed from
victims. Invariably when the identity of an abuser is revealed the response of far too
many is “We have known that for years.” Enabling abusers to continue, covering their
crimes to protect the image of the community, contribute to innocents being traumatized.
Page 5
Judith Herman in her book on trauma points out that both the abuser and the victims turn
to others for support. The victim needs action while the abuser only asks for our silence.
It is time to stop the silence. The true chilul Hashem is that we allow victims to continue
to suffer in order to preserve our community’s image.

Rabbi Shlomo Mandel the putz said...

The Shmated this week has me in the gedolim pictures section. I came in from Lakewood after shabbos to be by my YOB 100th fress dinner at ateres chayeh hall. My Psychotic brother (Jack Mandel) was living it up with harav hachamor rav shmuel kaminetzky. What an honor to be graced with the presence of other killers of klal yisrael. I can brazenly ignore any allegations leveled against me and yeshiva of brooklyn. You know why? Because i'm a psychotic and violent individual. Don't you get it? I think I'm entitled to sweep under the rug. It's easier and more convenient than dealing and facing the reality - and causing the wonderful mechanchim we employ. to have ruined reputations (i.e kolko, Nussbaum, Mondrowitz, Baruch Lanner, Stefen colmer, and so on and so on). What about parnassa and a shidduch for the mechanech? He's going to lose out.

Children can act very bad. They can get chutzpadic and even chas vesholom go on the internet, eat pizza, chew gum, and play with broom sticks. They are guilty of bringing on the punishment to themselves. If Kolko or Nussbaum did sexually molest boys there must have been a good reason for it. They must have done tshuva i'm sure. There is a possibility that it was just a one time thing anyway. I don't think a child will be affected by sexual abuse and severe corporal punishment.

BTW - I'm celebrating a few family simchas of my own baruch hashem - while those I brutalized are suffering in misery. You think I care? I just want to be considered chushuveh in the eyes of the the shmated photographer and the Jewish Fress. I'll continue to make believe none of this even exists and that all is good. the stupid oylam always fall for fake salami putz jerks such as myself. give me the respect I deserve.

I wonder if I'm going to get subpoenaed by the courts for my involvement in allowing yudel kolko to proctor tests at YOB - all this occurring after the story broke and after he was fired by ytt. I shudder at the thought. I'm scared that everyone will find oiut the truth about me and my dirty little secrets. I'm scared of future lawsuits or potential criminal charges. I know that day is soon coming. Right now I just hope people overlook my pathetic tale of a weasel that I truly am. I'm excusing myself now to pass some gas. Oy vey, I soiled my underwear and Tzitiz. I'm such a putz!
------------------------------

Yeshiva Fired, Then Paid, Rabbi Charged With Abuse said...

http://www.thejewishweek.com/viewArticle/c36_a7198/News/New_York.html

Thursday, April 3, 2008 / 27 AdarII 5768

Yeshiva Fired, Then Paid, Rabbi Charged With Abuse
Kolko got big bucks from Torah Temimah while ‘on leave’; lawyers suggest it’s hush money.


Rabbi Yehuda Kolko: Court documents reveal payments going back to 2006.



by Hella Winston/ Larry Cohler-Esses

A Brooklyn rabbi charged with having sexually molested his students has collected almost $70,000 from Yeshiva Torah Temimah and entities linked to it since the school put him on administrative leave 22 months ago.


Rabbi Yehuda Kolko received payments ranging from $3,000 to $9,000 per month between May 2006 and December 2007, according to court records obtained by The Jewish Week.

The court records also suggest that before Rabbi Kolko left the school, he received tens of thousands of dollars above his reported yearly income at the school’s direction.

Rabbi Kolko faces trial on charges of molesting two boys at the school and attacking an adult former student within the past several years. He remains free on $60,000 bail since his arrest and indictments in December 2006 and September 2007. A trial date has not yet been set.

Four former students have also filed separate civil suits against Torah Temimah, alleging they were molested by Rabbi Kolko and that the school covered it up. The suits seek damages totaling $50 million.

This week, a fifth plaintiff came forward. Identified in his complaint only as John Doe No. 6, the former student, now in his mid-20s, alleges Rabbi Kolko molested him when he was between the ages of 11 and 13. The abuse, he claims, took place in the yeshiva’s basement and in Rabbi Kolko’s private office, among other places.

As with the previous plaintiffs, the new one alleges that Rabbi Lipa Marguiles, the school’s chief administrator, “knew of allegations that Rabbi Kolko was sexually abusing boys at Torah Temimah years before” but failed to act.

Unlike the other suits, this one names Rabbi Marguiles personally as a defendant.

Michael Dowd, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, voiced concern Tuesday that the newly disclosed payments might influence Rabbi Kolko to remain silent about any knowledge or neglect by the school or Rabbi Marguiles regarding his alleged conduct. He noted that the yeshiva was effectively subsidizing Rabbi Kolko’s criminal legal defense while the school itself was being sued by his alleged victims for neglect.

Dowd, who represented plaintiffs in suits against the Catholic Church involving sexual abuse, said he saw the same pattern of continued payments in those cases.

“These child abusers could literally sink the institutions with the[ir] knowledge,” he said, explaining what he saw as the motivation for payment.

Still On The Payroll

It was in May 2006 that Yeshiva Torah Temimah announced it had put Rabbi Kolko on “administrative leave . . . on advice of counsel and by mutual agreement.” The announcement came shortly after two of the civil suits were filed, followed by a New York magazine exposé alleging years of child molestation by the rabbi and a decades-long cover-up by the yeshiva.

Despite Rabbi Kolko’s departure, canceled checks and other financial records show the yeshiva or entities linked to it continued to pay the rabbi substantial sums almost every month.

After repeated questions from The Jewish Week about the money, and repeated statements empahsizing the schools break with the rabbi, his attorney, Avi Moskowitz, said the funds were severance payments.

Significant gaps remain in the financial records. But from June 2006 — a month after his “administrative leave” was first announced — through August 2006, Rabbi Kolko received at least $6,000 per month from the yeshiva.

Attorneys for his alleged victims are still seeking yeshiva financial records for September and October 2006. But in November 2006, there was a change. That month a $6,000 check came from Yonasan Tendler, a Torah Temimah parent. The check was written out to “C. Grosnass,” apparently Rabbi Kolko’s married daughter, Chana Grosnas.

There is no record, once again, regarding payments in December 2006. But a payment for $9,000 in January 2007 came to Rabbi Kolko from Congregation Tzorchei Amcho, a Brooklyn-based religious charity headed by Tendler. Rabbi Kolko continued to receive payments, of $3,000 per month, from this charity through July 2007. In several cases, the charity paid Rabbi Kolko this sum the day after receiving an identical amount from the school.

After this, except for September, where there is another gap, the payments resumed from the yeshiva directly: $6,000 in August and October; and $3,000 in November and December, the last month for which records are available.

Regardless of who issued the checks and who received them, Yeshiva Torah Temimah can be assumed to have organized the payments, with Rabbi Kolko as the beneficiary. The yeshiva turned the records of these payments over to the court in response to a discovery request seeking all disbursements to Rabbi Kolko or his “agents” from the school or its “related entities or agents.”

Reached at home, Tendler, the head of the charity, which he described as a free loan fund, said, “I don’t think [Kolko] received any payments from the organization and I don’t have anything to talk about. Keep well.” In a follow-up call, he added: “I don’t know why payments made from a free loan fund or whatever should be a matter of public record.”

After checking with the school, Moskowitz, its attorney, said the checks to Kolko after his departure were severance payments, issued on the basis of a “halachic concept,” or religious law, that mandates one month’s pay for every year served for laid-off employees.

Moskowitz noted that Rabbi Kolko had worked at the school for about 35 years.

(That concept is not universally accepted. A Modern Orthodox Bet Din ruled in 2002 that such payments are not religiously required.)

Court records show that in 2006, the school reported Rabbi Kolko’s salary to the IRS as a little more than $1,000 per month. Moskowitz did not respond to a detailed message asking how this comported with the payments of $3,000 to $9,000 per month to Rabbi Kolko in the months following his departure.

Asked about the payments to Rabbi Kolko via Tendler and Congregation Tzorchei Amcho, his religious charity, Moskowitz said that the yeshiva had borrowed money from the fund to pay Kolko’s severance.

“They had a payroll to keep, and they didn’t have the money for it,” he said. “He [Tendler] fronted the money.”

As for the payments the yeshiva made to Tendler’s free loan fund the day before the fund made payments in the exact same amount to Kolko, Moscowitz said: “The yeshiva has borrowed money from this free loan society and they pay back all the time.”

Halachic Justification

It is unclear just when Yeshiva Torah Temimah terminated its ties with Rabbi Kolko, necessitating severance payments.

Moskowitz said initially that Rabbi Kolko “was put on administrative leave at the beginning of the school year” in 2006 — a termination time at odds with the school’s May 2006 announcement. Asked to explain the meaning of “administrative leave,” Moskowitz said, “Kolko was taken out of the classroom ... until they [could] figure out what to do. He is not employed by them.”

Yet, when pressed on Rabbi Kolko’s status, Moskowitz said, “He is not on leave. The employment relationship has been terminated.”

Asked whether Kolko had been fired, Moskowitz said that the yeshiva “obviously anticipated that he is not going back there. The relationship has been severed.”

Attempts to reach Rabbi Kolko at home were unsuccessful and calls to his civil attorney, Robert Mercurio, were unreturned. Jeffrey Schwartz, Rabbi Kolko’s criminal attorney, said he was not familiar with the financial terms of Kolko’s departure from the school.

But David Framowitz, an alleged victim of Kolko and the subject of the New York magazine piece, said he was “totally shocked and appalled to hear that Yeshiva Torah Temimah has been and is still paying Rabbi Kolko a monthly salary since supposedly firing him in May 2006. YTT has been misleading the public for almost the past two years with this lie. ... Is this what parents are paying their hard earned tuition for?”

Tax Discrepancies On Pay

Meanwhile, the records filed in response to the discovery request show another anomaly. Prior to his departure, Rabbi Kolko apparently was paid sums by the school or entities linked to it far in excess of the salary the school reported to the IRS.

In 2005, the records show, Torah Temimah reported Rabbi Kolko received $10,067 in wages, tips and other compensation. But financial transaction reports filed with the court show the school paid him $73,400, in multiple payments of varying size each month, all of them described as “reimbursement.” Moskowitz said these payments were actually Rabbi Kolko’s salary, dismissing their being labeled “reimbursement” as “an internal accounting issue.”

In 2006, an employee earnings statement for Rabbi Kolko lists his “reg[ular] salary” from the school for the months of June through August as $1,000 per month. But an additional statement shows him getting the same amount during this period from the Religious Education Association, a religious charity founded and controlled by Rabbi Marguiles, the yeshiva administrator.

Financial transaction records also filed with the court show checks that appear to correspond with these outlays. Deductions seem to have left Rabbi Kolko with $1,844 per month from these two sources, for a total of $5,532 during the three months in question. Additionally, the transaction records show, the school disbursed another $12,900 to Rabbi Kolko, once again, all listed as unspecified “reimbursements.”

For the entire year of 2006, these records show, Rabbi Kolko received more than $53,800 from the school and from Rabbi Marguiles’ charity — considerably more than the $1,000 per month listed as his school salary.

Moskowitz, the yeshiva’s attorney, did not respond to repeated detailed messages seeking clarification of these discrepancies. But in earlier interviews, he strongly defended the school’s payments to Rabbi Kolko after his departure.

“You mean that they give somebody that has not been convicted of anything, who worked for an institution for 35 years and then gets laid off, [severance] is newsworthy?” he said. “I don’t think so.” Rabbi Kolko, he noted, has not so far been convicted of anything.

Dowd, the attorney for those claiming Rabbi Kolko had molested them, would have none of this. “If you want, hold the money someplace . . . and then pay him later on if he is exonerated,” he said. “Who is going to complain then? But the idea that he’s being bought in order to defend himself, and if you will, his defense is being paid by the school that was charged with the protection of the children that he abused, it’s an outrage.”

Noting the New York City Department of Education’s policy of suspending teachers charged with sexual misconduct without pay, Dowd said, “I would hope that a yeshiva would hold itself to a higher standard than the New York City school system. ... The only severance that he should have received was a boot out the door.”

Hella Winston teaches sociology at Queens College specializing in the Orthodox community. Larry Cohler-Esses is editor at large.

Anonymous said...

On child sexual abuse

Boy, is the year 2008 going by quickly. Before you know it Guam and the CNMI will be inundated with the presence of about 8,000 US Marines and their families. The population will increase by about 20 percent and there will be much stress placed upon the systems in existence and the government will have less to deal with more.



April is Child Sexual Abuse month and the paper reports great increases in the reports of abuse in the CNMI. I think, as do many people in the different agencies, that the numbers of cases have always been there and the numbers being reported is because families are growing less tolerant of this.



I recall a report a few years ago stating that about 86 percent of the girls in the United States have been abused in some way over the course of their young lives. I have not seen statistics on the number of young males who have been abused but it may be a rather large number as well.



The problem as I see it is that many have never been given the chance to air their views on the abuse and have not been able to come out and discuss it with anyone. This is not some thing that goes away very easily. In fact, the abuse can still be an issue in one's life for decades after the actual abuse has ended. Another problem is that the victim often becomes merely a statistic where so-called professionals leave them in the dust and the matters never seem to end.



All kids deserve to be loved by those who bring them up and the kids need to have someone who they can trust to bring out issues that come into their lives and those who listen should believe the kids no matter how difficult. Kids generally don't lie about most things.

Anonymous said...

Former psychologist arraigned on rape, sex abuse charges
Updated: 04/02/2008
By: Web Staff

TROY, N.Y. -- A former psychologist accused of having sex with a 14-year-old student was arraigned in Rensselaer County Court Wednesday.

Jennifer Hastings, 32, of Sand Lake pleaded not guilty to second-degree rape, endangering the welfare of a child and third-degree sexual abuse.

Hastings was a court-assigned counselor for the Tamarac High School student. Police said the relationship turned sexual in September and October of last year.
Hastings arraigned
former psychologist accused of having sex with a 14-year-old student was arraigned in Rensselaer County Court Wednesday.


Hastings was released on $15,000 bail.

inmate Again Charged With Sex Abuse said...

http://www.northcountrygazette.org/2008/04/02/another_sex_charge/


Inmate Again Charged With Sex Abuse
Posted on Wednesday, 2 of April , 2008 at 2:05 pm

CHESTERTOWN—A former Chestertown resident who has a history of sexual abuse allegations which go back into the 1970s in northern Warren County has again been charged with sexually abusing another child.

Donald E. Moffitt Sr., formerly of Chestertown and Riparius and most recently of Fort Edward is currently in state prison, serving a sentence of up to life for the sexual abuse of a young girl.

In February, 2004, Moffitt was sentenced in Washington County Court to 12 years to life after being convicted of his third child-sex related felony since 1989.

Moffitt, a Level 3 sex offender, had been babysitting the girl who was younger than 11 years old when he molested her.

Moffitt is now being charged with having sexual contact with a 6-year-old girl in 2001 when he was living in Fort Edward. Police said that the girl had come forward in October 2006 and that they have been investigating her allegations since that time.

Moffitt had not been eligible for parole until 2016 and with this latest charge, prosecutors have stated that they intend to seek a sentence will insure that Moffitt is never released from prison. Moffitt is currently incarcerated at the Coxsackie Correctional Facility. He has been arraigned on the latest charge and returned to prison. 4-2-08

wow said...

http://theunorthodoxjew.blogspot.com/2008/04/yeshiva-fired-then-paid-rabbi-kolko.html

5 Towns / Long Beach said...

Two young boys at the center of a custody battle
have not been seen since Shushan Purim, and police
have a warrant to arrest their father, Natan
Horowitz, whose last known address was in Long
Beach.
Horowitz allegedly took the boys, Yosef, 5, and
Michael, 3, and dropped out of sight after a New
York State Supreme Court judge in Hempstead
awarded custody to the boys’ mother, Stacey
Horowitz, at a hearing on March 19.
“She was awarded temporary custody because
of his failure to produce the children on numerous
occasions for visitation,” said David Seidemann, an
attorney who represents the mother. “We filed a writ
of habeas corpus commanding him to appear in the
courthouse with the children. He didn’t show and
[an] order was issued from the court that he be
apprehended. She was granted temporary custody
but it was too late, he was gone.”
“I’m scared for them,” Stacey Horowitz said of
her childen Monday evening. “Everyone says they’ll
find them, but how can you disappear into thin air
with two kids?”
She said that a friend who was dropping off a
mishloach manot package for the boys early on March 20, Ta’anit Esther, saw Natan Horowitz’s car
filled with white garbage bags.
“The upstairs neighbor told me he saw someone
with a yarmulke, a man in his 60s, go into the apartment
that morning, so obviously someone is helping
him,” Mrs. Horowitz said.
The boys do not have passports, she said, and
her estranged husband has never left the country.
His parents live in Woodmere, but they told detectives
they do not know his whereabouts. Parents and
son are said to be “not close.”
While the case was first considered to be custodial
interference, a missing persons report filed with
the Long Beach Police Department Monday night
upgraded its status. As of press time on Tuesday,
police had not issued an Amber Alert notification.
E-mail about the boys’ disappearance was sent
out on Monday by a Far Rockaway couple, Avi and
Dawn Goldstein, who are friendly with Stacey
Horowitz, and was forwarded “around the world”
earlier this week. It noted that Natan drives a tan,
four-door American car with the license plate DYP
1887 and moved to Long Beach from North Woodmere
just two months ago. It said that he is known
as a ba’al tefillah and ba’al koreh and may try to find
a job in either of those capacities. Jewish communities are asked to “look out for a
newcomer with two children.”
If someone spots him, it is suggested
that local police be notified
immediately.
Late Tuesday afternoon,
the Goldsteins received an email
from a Chabad rabbi in
Farmington Hills, Michigan,
saying that Natan spent shabbos
of Shushan Purim in their
community with the two boys.
The rabbi, who identified
Natan from his name and the
descriptions given in the
email, said that he was posing
as a doctor who was on vacation,
claiming that his wife had
died in a car accident.
Mrs. Horowitz hasn’t seen
her boys since Feb. 25, though
it’s not the first time she and
her sons were forcibly separated.
After she suffered a bout of
post-partum depression three
years ago, following the birth
of Michael, her husband had
her committed against her will to a mental health facility and
then refused to allow her to
return home. He obtained an
order of protection against her
and used it to have her arrested
eight times, she said, for
infractions such as returning
the boys two minutes late from
court-ordered visitation. Each
time “it was the whole nine
yards –– fingerprints, handcuffs.”
She has spent a number
of nights in jail.
Anna Kotkes, of Far Rockaway,
a friend of Mrs.
Horowitz, said, “When I first
met her I thought she was
exaggerating. Then I got to
know her more and more.”
On more than one occasion,
Kotkes or her sons
returned the boys to their
father after a visit with their
mom “because we didn’t want
her near him because he was
always having her arrested.”
One such episode
occurred on the front stoop of
the 4th Precinct in Hewlett.
“They literally grabbed her from behind. I never saw anything
like it. I was sick,” Kotkes
said. “He’s really done a number
on her.”
Kotkes said she, herself, is
“terrified” of Natan Horowitz,
who has “used four letter
words” at her and threatened
to have her arrested.
“I once said to Natan,
‘you’re both the parents, why
don’t you be nice about it and
share the kids?’” Kotkes
recalled. “‘You don’t want to
be together but why can’t she
have her kids?” He responded,
“‘No way, my kids know she’s
crazy. They’re smarter than
she is.’”
Earlier this month Stacey
Horowitz was evaluated by a
mental health professional
who agreed to share his findings
with the consent of Mrs.
Horowitz and on condition of
anonymity.
On the morning of her
second son’s bris, the family’s
home burned to the ground.
“Needless to say, she became depressed,” the therapist related,
and “she was not treated
for her condition for many
months.”
Today, “there is no evidence
that she is a danger to
herself or others [and] there is
no reason to think that Mrs.
Horowitz would be anything
other than a good parent.”
Natan “is also playing
games with the Get,” Mrs.
Horowitz said. He has ignored
three summonses to appear
before the Beth Din of America,
according to an official at
Get Ora, an organization
which assists women who seek
a halachic divorce. A Siruv
(contempt of court) document
is awaiting the signature of the
Av Beit Din, Rabbi Gedaliah
Dov Schwartz of Chicago,
according to Get Ora.
“I don’t know what to
think, what’s with my kids,”
Mrs. Horowitz said. “It’s horrible.
It’s just horrible.”
5:20 PM, April 02, 2008

the ny times said...

The Tale of the Tape and the Talmud

By ZACHARY BRAZILLER
Published: April 3, 2008

Four days before his first North American Boxing Federation title defense, Yuri Foreman sat in the basement of a Brooklyn brownstone studying Shulchan Aruch, the code of Jewish law. By early afternoon, he would be at Gleason’s Gym to train for his approaching bout with Saul Román, a power puncher from Mexico with 24 knockouts in 28 fights.

This hectic schedule is familiar to Foreman, a 27-year-old rabbinical student and an undefeated professional light middleweight boxer who wears the Star of David on his boxing trunks and a black skullcap when he is studying or praying.

He answered rapid-fire questions from his teacher, Rabbi DovBer Pinson, an author and lecturer. The mental exercise, Foreman said, was tougher than any boxing routine.

“It’s a sharpen-your-mind workout,” he said. “When I go to the gym, I’m training my physical self. With the rabbi, I’m training my spiritual muscles.”

His manager, Murray Wilson, said a victory against Román on Thursday night in Brooklyn could earn Foreman (24-0) a shot at Joachim Alcine, a Canadian who holds the World Boxing Association title.

Foreman said his studies to become an Orthodox rabbi eased the physical stress of his boxing training. But he said he set the sport aside while reading the Talmud or attending classes twice a week at IYYUN, a Jewish institute in Brooklyn.

“Boxing and Judaism go side by side, because it’s a lot of challenges,” he said. “I would love to be a world champion and a rabbi.”

A three-time Israeli amateur national champion, Foreman came to the United States eight years ago to become a professional fighter. In 2000, he hoped to win the New York Golden Gloves and parlay it into a successful career. Instead, he lost a close decision in the final.

“I was very disappointed, but looking back, it was good I stayed another year in amateurs,” he said. “I won the next Golden Gloves, and then I was really ready.”

At first, Foreman had trouble getting fights while members of his first management team clashed. He was financially strapped.

About four years ago, Wilson, a New York City restaurant owner, stepped in as his manager and guided him to Bob Arum’s Top Rank organization. As Foreman’s career prospects improved, so did his personal life.

At Gleason’s, he met Leyla Leidecker, the Hungarian woman he would eventually marry and who would help set him on his religious quest. Leidecker, an amateur fighter and former fashion model, did not consider herself religious while growing up. She converted to Judaism in 2006.

Growing up in Belarus and later Israel, Foreman was not religious. As a Russian Jew, he said he was considered an outcast in Israel.

About five years ago, Leidecker suggested they study kabbalah, a form of Jewish mysticism. In an Internet search, she stumbled upon Rabbi Pinson’s classes at IYYUN.

Foreman said the first class went over his head. But he stuck with it, attending dinners with the rabbi and beginning to observe the Sabbath and other Jewish laws. He now wears tefillin — scrolls of Scripture attached to his arms and head during prayer — and tassels under his clothes.

“God gave me opportunities,” Foreman said. “I feel like I have to do something in return.”

Eighteen months ago, Rabbi Pinson sent an e-mail message to his students about the prospect of rabbinical studies. Foreman said he seized the opportunity out of a thirst for knowledge and a desire to help others. He said he hoped to one day return to Israel to share what he learned, although he is at least three years from being ordained as a rabbi.

“I can have my own community to help Russian kids,” he said.

His wife said she was not surprised by his commitment to studying his faith. “He was without his family, trying to get back to his roots, trying to belong somewhere,” Leidecker said.

Foreman’s endeavor has led to debate among some Jewish leaders.

Rabbi Joseph Potasnik, executive vice president of the New York Board of Rabbis, said Jewish principles would seem to put Foreman’s professional career at odds with his religious education. It is forbidden, the rabbi said, to injure yourself or another person. Rabbinic law also asks individuals to avoid situations of potential danger.

“He has to recognize there are certain issues he has to confront,” Potasnik said. “Doing what he’s doing is problematic, but all of life is problematic. That’s something he has to resolve, and I respect him for his commitment.”

But Rabbi Benjamin Blech, an assistant professor of the Talmud at Yeshiva University, said Foreman could help fight the belief that Jews were weak or could be bullied. When asked how he would react to the notion of a world champion boxing rabbi, Blech said, “I would be proud.”

He added: “Everything has a risk-and-reward factor. Does that mean he can’t go bungee jumping, get in a car or a plane?”

Foreman said his goal was not to injure himself or his opponent, but to win by outscoring competitors. And Arum, who described himself as an observant Jew, said rabbis have told him that Foreman’s studies and boxing were not in conflict.

Rabbi Pinson said that if Foreman had approached him as a young man, he would not have suggested a boxing career. Because Foreman was already accomplished in the sport, however, he said he would not dissuade him.

Foreman attempts to restrict his fights to weekdays.

If a bout lands on a Saturday, as was the case in June, he observes the Sabbath by remaining within walking distance of the arena. Wilson, his manager, said the sun had yet to set when HBO officials called for Foreman to make his way to the ring. He refused to do so.

“He pulled me into the corner,” Wilson recalled, “and said, ‘Please, let’s pray for five minutes.’ ”

obama said...

Blacks, Jews survey exhibit on race
Rutgers scholar leads tour and conversation on a heated topic
Professor Clement Price

Rutgers University history professor Clement Price, center, studies an exhibit on race and skin color at the Liberty Science Center in Jersey City. Photos by Robert Wiener

by Robert Wiener
NJJN Staff Writer

April 03, 2008

It was a conversation on race planned months before, and not one prompted by any one political event or news story.

But when a prominent black scholar addressed members of a Livingston synagogue and his own graduate students at the Liberty Science Center in Jersey City on March 31, neither he nor they could ignore the wider discussion on race swirling about them.

“Why has race all of a sudden become such an issue? Is it Barack Obama, or has he become a vehicle for a discussion that we Americans have been having since the dawn of the republic, but mainly a closeted discussion?” asked Clement Price, professor of history at Rutgers University’s Newark campus.

“This seems to be a discussion now in the public sphere. Race is a metaphor for identity. Race is a metaphor for opportunities found and opportunities lost. Our tour this afternoon could not be held at a more fortuitous time.”

shmuel said...

Last update - 02:28 03/04/2008
Court denies bail to two moms in abuse cases
By Jonathan Lis and Ofra Edelman

The Jerusalem District Court yesterday extended the remand of two women suspected of severely abusing their children.

In the case of the Jerusalem mother, whose two children aged three and four and a half were hospitalized in serious condition, an indictment is expected on Sunday. The Beit Shemesh woman was charged yesterday with abusing a minor, along with 25 charges of assault against six of her 12 children.

During the pre-trial hearings yesterday, new details were revealed about the case of the Jerusalem family.

Parents invited rabbi into home

According to the details of the investigation, the parents of the children invited Rabbi Elior Chen and several other men to their home in order to study Torah. The men, including David Kugman and Shimon Gabai, lived in the family's home. When the relationship between the mother and the father deteriorated, the men allegedly drove the father out of the house by force, and he moved elsewhere.

Rabbi Chen allegedly told Kugman and Gabai to discipline the children, but they failed to do so.

The police said that when the routine methods of discipline failed, Rabbi Chen ordered them to use violence, which allegedly included beatings, burnings, pushing, shaking and tying. Investigators also suspect that the two men placed the children in baths of hot and cold water, and broke their bones with hammers and blows.

In the case of the Beit Shemesh woman, the indictment states that she beat her children for years with a belt, a stick, a rolling pin and an electrical cable.

Abuse said...

http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1207159746535&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

Jerusalem child abuser to be indicted next week
Etgar Lefkovits , THE JERUSALEM POST Apr. 3, 2008

A Jerusalem woman who immigrated from the US and her companion are expected to be indicted next week for allegedly abusing her two young children, police said Wednesday.

The woman's three-year-old child remains hospitalized in critical condition with severe head injuries, and is likely to remain in a vegetative state, officials said.

Police said that several months ago, the woman's relations with her husband broke down, and he was removed from their Jerusalem home by two men whom the couple had brought into their home to educate their children.

The mother told police that since they were unable to educate her children in the "standard" way because they were "mischievous," the two men "corrected" the children, a police representative told a Jerusalem court on Wednesday.

The "corrections," which took place in the mother's presence, included beatings, tying up the children, shaking them dozens of times, setting their fingers on fire, dousing them in hot and cold water, and breaking their bones by beating them with hammers and other tools, according to the testimony of the police representative.

A court order has prevented the release of the names of the woman and her companion, who on Wednesday were remanded in custody for an additional five days by the Jerusalem Magistrate's Court ahead of their planned arraignment next week.

The children's father, who has been released from custody, was allowed by the court to pray at his child's hospital bedside, in the presence of social workers.

The two key suspects in the child abuse case, identified by police as Shimon Gabbai and Rabbi Elior Chen, remain at large, and are wanted by police.

The Jerusalem abuse case is one of a series of grisly incidents of brutality against children that have recently come to light.

Lepoid Margulis said...

I think the media is making up abuse stories.
''''''''''''''''''''

The Jerusalem Post Internet Edition

Rise in child abuse or a media creating 'moral panic'?
Ruth Eglash , THE JERUSALEM POST Apr. 3, 2008

The scarf-covered heads of observant women shielding their identities from the media is becoming a common image in our national consciousness as each passing day we hear of more and more sickening child abuse stories from within our society, especially from inside the ultra-Orthodox community.

First it was the religious, Anglo-immigrant family in Jerusalem, where the mother stood accused of physically abusing her two young sons; next the burka-clad woman - apparently part of a Beit Shemesh religious cult - indicted Tuesday by the Jerusalem District Court for inflicting untold violence on six of her 12 children and allowing incest to continue unabated in her family.

These two gruesome cases were closely followed by reports of a Ramle couple, where the father routinely stubbed his cigarettes out on his children, and now the Netivot mother of eight, also observant, arrested Tuesday on suspicion of having sex with two of her sons, aged eight and 10.

Shocking, shocking and shocking.

What is happening to Israeli society and to the haredi community in particular, that people must hurt their children in this way? Has all sense of morality been lost? Have the ultra-Orthodox given up on the stringent family values they were once so proud of?

Secular people might even be wondering - when it suddenly seems as though every ultra-Orthodox person is abusing their kids - if something has gone wrong with the religious experiment.

But is there anything actually wrong?

Of course, one can neither ignore the terrible effects of physical and sexual abuse on these children, nor cast blame for the evils of certain individuals on outside sources, but do all these reports add up to a sudden rise in the number of children being abused? Could the explanation more likely be that we are just allowing the media to stir up our senses?

After all, their aim is to sell newspapers, and throughout history, humankind has always enjoyed a good public flogging, hasn't it? Is it that these reports also give us the opportunity to cast our own moral judgments and make us feel good about our own lives?

If the answer to these questions is yes, then it is possible that we are in the midst of a "moral panic."

Coined in 1972 by sociologist Stanley Cohen, "moral panic" refers to the reaction of a population based on false or exaggerated perceptions that certain behavior - frequently by a minority group or subculture - is dangerous, deviant and poses a menace to society.

In his work, Cohen discussed the way in which the media amplifies these feelings, turning them into a national issue.

"We have to study [these reports] in more depth to determine if this is a moral panic situation," states Prof. Nachman Ben-Yehuda, from the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, who has written extensively on the topic of moral panic both here and abroad.

"There has always been abuse of children," he continues, "So do these four or five cases mean there is more abuse, or that the abuse is gaining more media attention?"

According to Hannah Slutzky, national supervisor for child affairs at the Welfare and Social Services Ministry, there has been no official increase in the number of actual abuse cases, although the type of abuse might be becoming more extreme than in the past.

So that leaves us with the moral panic argument, which can best be illustrated by the 1993 murder of three-year-old James Bulger in Liverpool, England, by two 10-year-olds emulating scenes from the 1991 film Child's Play 3.

While it was not the first time that children had killed other children, what made Bulger's case into a classic example of moral panic was the national reaction to it and the role of the media in instigating that reaction.

At the time, the case was used by print and broadcast journalists to symbolize everything that was wrong with British society, from increasing levels of violence to the effects of television and movies on young children.

As the public debate increased, so the moral panic spread to academics and politicians who called for increased legislature and social policy on the subject.

When the debate on violence among children eventually slowed down and all talk of the phenomenon disappeared from the public sphere, did that mean child violence had been successfully stamped out? Certainly not - it still comes and goes just like any other hot issue.

"There are waves in media reporting," claims Prof. Tamar Liebes from the School of Communication at the Hebrew University. "And the same way these stories explode, they suddenly vanish again without much follow-up."

However, in the case of the current wave of public and media interest in child abuse stories, the obsession is unlikely to abate that quickly, observes Ben-Yehuda.

"My belief is that we will start to see experts and moral people call for a return to old ideas and values, suggest parenting classes and such - but of course, we've already been in that movie before."

And we will most likely see that movie again sometime in the future.

Yehuda Nussbaum the sadist molester said...

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/971165.html

New law calls for 7 centers to protect child victims of sexual violence
By Shahar Ilan, Haaretz Correspondent

The Knesset approved a law Wednesday stipulating the establishment of seven centers for protecting child victims of sexual violence.

The new centers will provide a plethora of services including psychological and health care, social services, representatives from the youth department of the police, investigators specializing in children, subsidized legal services and volunteers from the various children's rights groups, among others.

These centers will provide all the services at one place, allowing children and teens to receive the precise care they require.

Over the last 20 years, this type of center has been operating in 400 different locations in the United States, and they are considered a desired model for the treatment of child victims of sexual crimes and violence. The first such center has been opened in Jerusalem as a pilot, and has been termed a success.

The total cost of operating the seven centers comes to approximately NIS 7 million.

The law was proposed by Knesset Education Committee Chairman Rabbi Michael Melchior (Labor). The National Council for the Child promoted the bill. The law was approved by 67 MK, including all the ministers present in the plenum. No one opposed.

The text accompanying the law said "the multiple services and the splitting of the care giving facilities cause difficulties, both mental and otherwise, in children who are treated by a large number of professionals, forced to answer the same probing questions many times, taken to places that are not tailored for children and subject to bureaucracy and delays."

According to Melchior, the law poses as "the first meaningful Knesset response to the national plague of abuse of helpless children. Thanks to the protection centers approved today, they [the children] won't have to relive the abuse and the rape over and over again every time they are treated by government workers."

"Once and for all," he continued, "the injustice by which criminals get intensive government care while the victims are neglected in the depths of bureaucracy has finally been righted."

The chairman of the National Council for the Child, Yitzhak Kedman, said that the law is a message from the Knesset to child victims of violence that the government is with them.

Avi Shafran said...

I agree. Even jail inmates deserve to eat Matzoh and kosher food.
--------------------------------

Corrections to pay $25,000 to settle suit by Jewish inmate

April 2, 2008

By Dave Gram Associated Press

MONTPELIER — The state Corrections Department has agreed to pay $25,000 to settle a lawsuit brought by a Jewish former inmate who said he was denied traditional food including matzoh at Passover and was blocked from observing the holidays of his faith.

Gordon Bock, 53, of Northfield was imprisoned between Oct. 22, 2004 and May 10, 2005, on domestic assault, violation of an abuse-prevention order, attempted unlawful trespass and violation of conditions of release convictions, the Corrections Department said. He brought suit in 2005, alleging religious discrimination.

Bock charged that Corrections Department personnel at the Northwest State Correctional Facility in St. Albans Town and at the Northern State Correctional Facility in Newport "knowingly, willfully and maliciously withheld basic religious accommodations that would have facilitated (Bock's) religious observance ... without hampering either the operation or security of a correctional institution."

The settlement follows a finding by a federal magistrate judge, Jerome Niedermeier, in late November, that appeared to support Bock's charge of malice. Bock "has produced enough evidence to make a reasonable inference of malice," Niedermeier wrote.

Bock argued that the Corrections Department violated the First Amendment's guarantee of religious freedom, Vermont law and the Corrections Department's own policy directives.

Bock said he was blocked from receiving kosher food for Passover from a Florida-based group that provides Jewish food and religious items, usually at no charge, to Jews in prisons, the military and mental institutions in the U.S. and abroad. The settlement mandates that inmates be allowed to receive items from that group, the Aleph Institute of Surfside, Fla.

Niedermeier also noted Bock was restricted in his use of a menorah for Hanukkah. He was allowed to use only one with electric bulbs, rather than the traditional candles, and was allowed to use it only during visits by a rabbi. He said other inmates were allowed to use Christmas lights at a far broader range of times.

The department, through its lawyer, Assistant Attorney General Kurt Kuehl, denied any wrongdoing in court papers.

"Bock has not set forth any facts showing that defendants acted with evil motive or intent or reckless or callous indifference to his rights," Kuehl wrote to the court. "Ensuring the safety of a correctional facility is not an evil motive."

Corrections Commissioner Robert Hofmann said the department recently had drafted new rules on religious observances that been well received by inmates, staff and faith communities, though he said the new rules were not in response to Bock's suit.

He declined to comment on the suit specifically other than to say, "The Department of Corrections elected to settle the claim rather than face the uncertainties and expenses inherent in a jury trial."

Ask The Rabbi said...

Q: I have heard that a child carrying a Torah can complete a minyan when we are one short of the necessary 10 people. Is that true? How does that work?

- C.M., Jerusalem

A The alleged ability of a Torah scroll to transform a minor into the 10th person for a minyan has tantalized and perplexed scholars and laypeople alike. The murkiness, however, includes not only the power of the scroll, but also the role of children in creating ritual quorums.

Conventional wisdom contends that Halacha requires a quorum of 10 adult men to recite sanctification prayers (devarim shebekedusha), such as Kaddish and Kedusha (Megilla 23b), and three adult men to recite the zimmun before Grace after Meals. The Talmud, however, cites one scholar who includes "even an infant in the cradle" to complete the quorum. While the Talmud seemingly rejects including such a young child, it does approvingly cite an alternative option of including in a zimmun a "child who understands that he is blessing God."

http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1207209964817&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

Rabbi Eliyahu said...

http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3527410,00.html

Some 1,000 people attended a memorial service at the Mercaz Harav rabbinical seminary Thursday, marking the one-month anniversary of the murderous attack which claimed the lives of eight young men.

Also attending the service were many prominent rabbis of the Religious Zionist Movement, who were not shy about expressing their rage against the government's policy.

Rabbi Yaakov Shapira, head of the Mercaz Harav yeshiva, chose to explain the attack by saying that "the Torah and the land of Israel are acquired only through agony."

Former Sephardi chief Rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu called on the government to decree that for every life lost in the attack another yeshiva and township will be formed.

Remembering the fallen. The memorial (Photo: Gil Yohanan)

"Even when we seek revenge, it is important to make one thing clear – the life of one yeshiva boy is worth more than the lives of 1,000 Arabs.

"The Talmud states that if gentiles rob Israel of silver they will pay it back in gold, and all that is taken will be paid back in folds, but in cases like these there is nothing to pay back, since as I said – the life of one yeshiva boy is worth more than the lives of 1,000 Arabs," added Rabbi Eliyahu.

Ramat Gan's chief rabbi, Yaacov Ariel, chose to deliver a more moderate message: "We do not seek vengeance, we seek retaliation. The terrorist's house should have been demolished immediately, regardless of the law. It should have been done because it was a matter of life and death – the deterrence could help save future lives."

"We are against killing innocent people or harming children," he added, "but once terrorists hide behind children, we have to strike back. The blood of those living in Sderot is worth just as much as the blood of those the terrorists hide behind."

Mercaz Harav will be holding a vigil in memory of those killed in the attack all through Thursday night.

Mercaz Harav remembers attack victims said...

http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?c=JPArticle&cid=1207209969080&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

Mercaz Harav remembers attack victims
JPost.com Staff , THE JERUSALEM POST Apr. 3, 2008

Mercaz Harav Yeshiva on Thursday held a memorial service to mark 30 days since the terror attack that killed eight of its students. Among the speakers at the event was former chief rabbi, Rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu, who said that the erection of new settlements would be the proper way to avenge the attack.

"The state should erect another town, another yeshiva and another settlement for every Jew killed," Eliyahu told the crowd at Mercaz Harav. "The government should divert larger funds to yeshivas - that will be our revenge."

"The universe is founded upon the study of Torah and our government should appreciate those who study Torah," he added.

The head of the yeshiva, Rabbi Yaakov Shapira said: "The Jewish people ask that there be a drop of self respect and that the massacre at the yeshiva not be glossed over. We are faced with the despicable phenomenon of those who aspire to set down a new and hollow path. We will do our part, carry the Lord's name on our lips and be fortified in our study of Torah.

The memorial was supposed to be held on Sunday, 30 days after the attack, but was held early due to the fact that Sunday is the beginning of the Jewish month of Nissan, during which it is customary not to schedule memorials and eulogies.

The students at the yeshiva were scheduled to hold a mishmer, a nightlong Torah study vigil, to honor the memory of their friends.

arab news said...

Wednesday 2 April 2008 (25 Rabi` al-Awwal 1429)

Editorial: Hang-Arab Solution
2 April 2008 —


The world has long stopped reacting to the “shock and awe” that Israel routinely inflicts on its conscience on a daily basis. But even from Israeli standards, this one should take the cake. Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu, the chief rabbi of Safad, has urged the Zionist state to exact a “horrible revenge” on Palestinian children for the recent attack on a Jewish seminary by hanging them from treetops. In an article widely quoted by Jerusalem Post and Haaretz, Eliyahu writes: “We have to take horrible revenge for the terrorist attack at Merkaz Harav Yeshiva. A state that really respects the lives of its citizens would have hanged the 10 sons of the terrorist on a tree 50-meter tall, so that others would see it and be afraid.”

These words dripping with cold malevolence would have been dismissed as the rant of a rabid loose cannon if the source had not been so highly placed in the Israeli establishment. Rabbi Eliyahu is not your regulation Zionist freak dreaming of driving all Arabs and Palestinians into the Mediterranean. He does not represent a lunatic fringe but speaks for the Israeli establishment.

And in doing so, the rabbi offers a peek into the mindset of his kind, revealing how far removed from reason and reality the Israelis are. As Mossawa Center, an Arab human rights group, has emphasized, this is nothing but pure, old-fashioned racism. If this is how prominent religious leaders and intellectuals in Israel think, then what hope the Arabs and Palestinians can ever have of finding a so-called “peaceful and pragmatic” solution to the Arab-Israel conflict?

The attack on the Jewish seminary in Jerusalem last month was unfortunate and unacceptable. And the Arabs, including the Palestinian leadership, have condemned it as such. Even when they knew that Merkaz Harav Yeshiva has reportedly been involved in promoting the kind of extremism that Rabbi Eliyahu represents. However, incidents like these cannot be seen in isolation. Before rushing to hang the Arab children, Rabbi Eliyahu and Israeli leaders who think like him would do well to pause and ponder what is driving young men like Alaa Abu Dheim to extreme measures like these.

This is no defense of the Jerusalem attack. But Rabbi Eliyahu and Israel, with all its might, cannot prevent desperate actions such as this, if they do not try to understand the factors that lead to such desperation in the first place. We have been here before. But it ultimately boils down to the Israeli occupation and the endless persecution of the Palestinians. But then this “worn-out argument” has never cut any ice with our Israelis, has it? On the other hand, ignoring these “realities on the ground,” as President George Bush would put it, is not going to get rid of them either.

If Israel is indeed serious about peace with the Palestinians and the larger Arab world, it has to address the real issue at the heart of this conflict. And that is the occupation of Arab lands. There are no shortcuts to peace. And hanging Arabs in no solution.

palestinian terrorists said...

http://www.imemc.org/article/53858

The Saga Of The Palestinian People

When the voice announced on the car radio "Palestinian terrorist killed eight school children in Jerusalem", I thought to myself 'How horrible.' As I was programmed to do by the wording of the news story, I imagined little children playing in a schoolyard when it all had taken place, killed in cold blood. On another broadcast the announcer had more details and mentioned the attack had been on 'Seminary' students, adding to the depravity of it all. I imagined these humble, little, monk-looking creatures praying for peace, harmony, and all that 'love thy neighbor' business that is supposed to be part of the Kingdom of God. 'What an awful thing to do,' I thought, 'Simply horrible'.

avremel schor said...

I BAN THIS FROM NOW ON!
----------------------

The program featured musical presentations by Jewish musical sensations, Yaakov Shwekey, and Shalsheles, and an up-and-coming band, Yaakov Chesed. Inspirational guest speakers included former Member of Knesset Natan Sharansky, Rabbi Benny Eisner of Yeshiva Merkaz Harav Kook, National Council of Young Israel President Shlomo Mostofsky, and Daniel Luria, executive director of Ateret Cohanim in Israel.


http://www.jewishpress.com/displaycontent_new.cfm?contentid=31090&contentname=Rally%20And%20Concert%20Draws%205,000%20In%20Support%20Of%20Jerusalem§ionid=17&mode=a&recnum=0

Rabbi Dov Lior said...

Yesha Chief Rabbi: Giving arms to the PA is against Jewish law
By Nadav Shragai
Tags: Rabbi Dov Lior, PA, Yesha

Settler chief rabbi and chief rabbi of the West Bank settlement of Kiryat Arba Rabbi Dov Lior, is set to release a religious ruling in the coming days stating that "the transfer of armored vehicles and weaponry to the Palestinian Authority is collaboration with the enemy."

In addition, Lior will call for officers to refuse orders to carry out the transfers.

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/970658.html

Avi Shafran said...

This is pornography.
-------------------

Should I convert to Judaism for my boyfriend?
Questions from
the e-mailbag
By Brian Josepher

A slow but interesting week for the mailbag. I received a single e-mail from Allison in New York. "Help," she wrote. "My boyfriend wants me to convert to Judaism. He says that his parents will disown him if he marries outside the faith. He says that it’s merely a formality. I don’t know what to think. I was raised to be Catholic. I’m not really practicing and I don’t believe in Jesus as the Son of God but I need some advice. What would you do?"

THE FORWARD said...

http://www.forward.com/articles/13092/

Stop Calling Me an ‘Ultra-Orthodox Jew’

By Abbott Katz
Thu. Apr 03, 2008

Stop calling me an ultra-Orthodox Jew.

“Ultra” — the modifier of choice for a press hawking its smudged cartography of Jewish religious life — has enjoyed a long, wearisome, dubious run, and it isn’t recusing itself from the discourse any time soon. The Jewish religious world occupies a bewilderingly disparate space, to be sure, but mapping its turf begs a measure of precision of which the media’s collective instrumentation seems largely incapable — and “ultra,” with its Latinate tinge, redolent of cultic cadres pushing their faith to mysterious extremes, badly misreads the coordinates.

Take the Money and Frum said...

Nineteen-year-old black hat Avraham Rotenberg was recently identified as the man who stormed a Lakewood, New Jersey jewelry store armed with a shot gun this past February, making off with two duffel bags of jewelry.



Rotenberg is still on the lam though some of the jewelry was recovered after Rabbi Michael Rottenberg received a phone call at 4:30 a.m. telling him to look outside his front door. The rabbi contacted the police who found some of the stolen jewelry on his front steps.



The incident has caused a stir in the Lakewood Orthodox community, but community elders insist that the crime should not be considered a “Jewish” one, as the shotgun Rotenberg used was not sawed-off.

Australian police said...

Australian police to investigate 'long-standing' child sex abuse

Police in Australia's Northern Territory have admitted they have known about allegations of child sex abuse in Nhulunbuy on the Gove Peninsula for more than a year.

Residents of the mining town, which is located 650 kilometres east of Darwin, say teenage girls are known to be offering sex in exchange for drugs and alcohol.

Acting Assistant Police Commissioner Colleen Gwinne says police have been aware of the allegations for up to 18 months.

"(This) has caused some investigation, however at this stage we've been unable to substantiate any of the information sufficient enough to proceed with any criminal action," she said.

The Territory's chief minister, Paul Henderson, also concedes police have known about the allegations for some time.

"Police have over a significant period of time heard of these allegations but (it has) been very hard to provide specific evidence to get somebody before the courts, so this is a difficult area and I do urge people, if they have evidence, to go to the police," he said.

Australian Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin says a child-abuse taskforce will go to the town to investigate the claims.

"I'd really encourage anyone with any information to come forward," she said.

Leon White, a former school principal in the nearby Aboriginal community of Yirrkala, says the investigation is long overdue.

"I hope people actually see the urgency of this," he told the ABC.

Territory indigenous leader and former Australian of the Year Galarrwuy Yunupingu says child prostitution has been an issue in the mining town of Nhulunbuy for more than 15 years.

Mr Yunupingu expressed disgust at individuals who lure young girls to have sex, some of whom he says have become pregnant as a result.

"Some of the kids without fathers being registered - quite a number of them in our community," he said.

"And the mothers who are being abused for sexual reasons have ended up with having children who are not going to be fathered by anybody."

He accuses the government of having ignored the issue.

"It has been let go let go for awhile and it should be about time that somebody in authority should come and stamp it out."

http://www.abc.net.au/ra/news/stories/200804/s2208241.htm

Anonymous said...

Stockton diocese priest hit with suit alleging sex abuse
The Associated Press
Article Launched: 04/02/2008 01:51:38 PM PDT

STOCKTON, Calif.—A priest at the Roman Catholic Diocese of Stockton faces a claim that he sexually abused a boy in the 1980s.

The Rev. Michael Kelly was a priest at the Cathedral of the Annunciation in Stockton when the alleged abuse occurred at the boy's home from 1982 to 1985.

The alleged victim is now 33 years old, but did not recall the molestation until 2006, according to the lawsuit filed March 26 in San Joaquin County Superior Court.

Kelly was placed on leave when the plaintiff's parents first contacted the diocese about the allegations last October. But in March, he returned to the ministry at St. Joachim Catholic Church in Lockeford.

Kelly calls the claims "outrageous lies," and says he intends to fight the suit.

———

Information from: The Record, http://www.recordnet.com/

yudi kolko said...

Sex abuse ex-scout leader jailed

A former scout leader has been jailed for life for sexually abusing a boy for six years.

Cardiff Crown Court heard Stephen Davies, from Newport, used his role in the scouts to befriend the youngster.

Davies, 48, admitted 10 charges of sexual abuse dating back to 1990, when his victim was 11.

He was ordered to serve a minimum of nine years after the court heard he is currently serving an indefinite sentence for raping a 13-year-old boy.

The sex offender has also served seven years in prison for raping a girl aged under 16.

These offences involve a gross breach of trust. Your victim was terrified of you
Judge Neil Bidder

Judge Neil Bidder told Davies: "You are intelligent and cunning enough to groom your victims and join organisations which would give you the opportunity to meet young children.

"These current offences and your previous sexual offences make it clear you are a particular dangerous paedophile with uncontrolled urges towards young boys and girls."

Trip

The court was told that the latest offences began when Davies used a camping trip to Tintern Abbey in Monmouthshire to rape the 11-year-old boy.

Prosecutor David Elias added: "As the boy grew older he tried to stop Davies but if he resisted he would be punched until he gave in and Davies was careful not to leave any bruises.

"The boy was prone to emotional blackmail and Davies would say 'if you don't do it, you don't love me.

"He threatened to kill him if he told anyone what was going on."

The sexual abuse only came to light when Davies's now adult victims reported him to the police.

The paedophile admitted five charges of serious sexual assault, three of indecency with a child, rape and indecent assault.

Judge Bidder told him: "These offences involve a gross breach of trust. Your victim was terrified of you.

"You used this child like a sexual toy and were jealous when he wanted to have a girlfriend.

"Sexual abuse became part of your victim's life."

Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/uk_news/wales/south_east/7329646.stm

Published: 2008/04/03

malka leifer said...

Police arrest woman for alleged child sex abuse

By JESSICA SAVAGE
The Lufkin Daily News

Friday, April 04, 2008

Hudson police have arrested a 24-year-old woman for allegedly undressing with a 5-year-old and asking the boy to touch her private area, an arrest report stated.

As of Thursday evening, Misty Parker of Hudson remained in Angelina County Jail on a $50,000 bond, according to jail records.

Officers arrested Parker late Wednesday after Child Protective Services alerted law enforcement about the child's statements to a CPS investigator, the report stated. The incident is alleged to have happened March 31 at Parker's residence. The boy told a child forensic interviewer Parker asked him to undress and then told him to touch her private area, the report stated. Parker allegedly told the boy not to "tell anyone that she had made him do this," the report stated.

Indecency with a child by contact is a second-degree felony offense.

exposemolesters said...

http://www.courier-journal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080403/NEWS01/80403020/1008

Lawmakers approve tougher sex-abuse penalties

By Peter Smith • psmith@courier-journal.com • April 3, 2008

Tougher penalties for sexual abuse and failing to report abuse are in the works now that the General Assembly has approved a bill drafted in response to scandals of abuse in churches, schools and elsewhere.

Gov. Steve Beshear has said he plans to sign the bill, which was approved unanimously by consent in the Senate yesterday.

“Finally the voice of the victims has been heard,” said Shannon Whelan of the group Protect Our Children KY, a coalition of advocates for the bill.

House Bill 211 makes sexual contact with someone younger than 16 a felony if committed by someone older than 21. Currently, some forms of sexual contact with teenagers are misdemeanors.

Felony charges also could be filed against anyone in a position of authority or trust — such as a family member, teacher, employer, clergy member or coach — who has sexual contact with someone younger than 18.

As felonies, such crimes would carry heavier sentences and could be prosecuted years into the future. Misdemeanors generally have a one-year statute of limitations.
“It will allow kids that do talk about (abuse) years later to be able to bring charges,” Whelan said.

The few sex crimes involving minors that would remain misdemeanors would have a five-year statute of limitations under the bill.

The bill also imposes progressively steeper penalties for people who repeatedly fail to report sexual abuse to authorities.

Backers of the bill included the Catholic Conference of Kentucky — representing the state’s Catholic bishops, who faced years of scandal over sexual abuse by priests and failures of the church to prevent it.

Also supporting it was the Kentucky Baptist Convention, Kentucky Youth Advocates and the Family Foundation of Kentucky.

Beshear’s spokeswoman, Vicki Glass, said the governor “looks forward to (the bill) making its way to his desk for his signature.”

Reporter Peter Smith can be reached at (502) 582-4469.

exposemolesters said...

Corruption of the worst kind by the YTT animals and head of the school - Lipa Margulies.

A money trail for the purpose of paying child molesters who are unemployed. Very convenient indeed. For both parties.

MONSTERS!

Brilliant article by by Hella Winston/ Larry Cohler-Esses.

EM
==============================

http://www.thejewishweek.com/viewArticle/c36_a7198/News/New_York.html

Yeshiva Fired, Then Paid, Rabbi Charged With Abuse
Kolko got big bucks from Torah Temimah while ‘on leave’; lawyers suggest it’s hush money.


Rabbi Yehuda Kolko: Court documents reveal payments going back to 2006.

by Hella Winston/ Larry Cohler-Esses

A Brooklyn rabbi charged with having sexually molested his students has collected almost $70,000 from Yeshiva Torah Temimah and entities linked to it since the school put him on administrative leave 22 months ago.


Rabbi Yehuda Kolko received payments ranging from $3,000 to $9,000 per month between May 2006 and December 2007, according to court records obtained by The Jewish Week.

The court records also suggest that before Rabbi Kolko left the school, he received tens of thousands of dollars above his reported yearly income at the school’s direction.

Rabbi Kolko faces trial on charges of molesting two boys at the school and attacking an adult former student within the past several years. He remains free on $60,000 bail since his arrest and indictments

in December 2006 and September 2007. A trial date has not yet been set.

Four former students have also filed separate civil suits against Torah Temimah, alleging they were molested by Rabbi Kolko and that the school covered it up. The suits seek damages totaling $50 million.

This week, a fifth plaintiff came forward. Identified in his complaint only as John Doe No. 6, the former student, now in his mid-20s, alleges Rabbi Kolko molested him when he was between the ages of 11 and 13. The abuse, he claims, took place in the yeshiva’s basement and in Rabbi Kolko’s private office, among other places.

As with the previous plaintiffs, the new one alleges that Rabbi Lipa Marguiles, the school’s chief administrator, “knew of allegations that Rabbi Kolko was sexually abusing boys at Torah Temimah years before” but failed to act.

Unlike the other suits, this one names Rabbi Marguiles personally as a defendant.

Michael Dowd, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, voiced concern Tuesday that the newly disclosed payments might influence Rabbi Kolko to remain silent about any knowledge or neglect by the school or Rabbi Marguiles regarding his alleged conduct. He noted that the yeshiva was effectively subsidizing Rabbi Kolko’s criminal legal defense while the school itself was being sued by his alleged victims for neglect.

Dowd, who represented plaintiffs in suits against the Catholic Church involving sexual abuse, said he saw the same pattern of continued payments in those cases.

“These child abusers could literally sink the institutions with the[ir] knowledge,” he said, explaining what he saw as the motivation for payment.

Still On The Payroll

It was in May 2006 that Yeshiva Torah Temimah announced it had put Rabbi Kolko on “administrative leave . . . on advice of counsel and by mutual agreement.” The announcement came shortly after two of the civil suits were filed, followed by a New York magazine exposé alleging years of child molestation by the rabbi and a decades-long cover-up by the yeshiva.

Despite Rabbi Kolko’s departure, canceled checks and other financial records show the yeshiva or entities linked to it continued to pay the rabbi substantial sums almost every month.

After repeated questions from The Jewish Week about the money, and repeated statements empahsizing the schools break with the rabbi, his attorney, Avi Moskowitz, said the funds were severance payments.

Significant gaps remain in the financial records. But from June 2006 — a month after his “administrative leave” was first announced — through August 2006, Rabbi Kolko received at least $6,000 per month from the yeshiva.

Attorneys for his alleged victims are still seeking yeshiva financial records for September and October 2006. But in November 2006, there was a change. That month a $6,000 check came from Yonasan Tendler, a Torah Temimah parent. The check was written out to “C. Grosnass,” apparently Rabbi Kolko’s married daughter, Chana Grosnas.

There is no record, once again, regarding payments in December 2006. But a payment for $9,000 in January 2007 came to Rabbi Kolko from Congregation Tzorchei Amcho, a Brooklyn-based religious charity headed by Tendler. Rabbi Kolko continued to receive payments, of $3,000 per month, from this charity through July 2007. In several cases, the charity paid Rabbi Kolko this sum the day after receiving an identical amount from the school.

After this, except for September, where there is another gap, the payments resumed from the yeshiva directly: $6,000 in August and October; and $3,000 in November and December, the last month for which records are available.

Regardless of who issued the checks and who received them, Yeshiva Torah Temimah can be assumed to have organized the payments, with Rabbi Kolko as the beneficiary. The yeshiva turned the records of these payments over to the court in response to a discovery request seeking all disbursements to Rabbi Kolko or his “agents” from the school or its “related entities or agents.”

Reached at home, Tendler, the head of the charity, which he described as a free loan fund, said, “I don’t think [Kolko] received any payments from the organization and I don’t have anything to talk about. Keep well.” In a follow-up call, he added: “I don’t know why payments made from a free loan fund or whatever should be a matter of public record.”

After checking with the school, Moskowitz, its attorney, said the checks to Kolko after his departure were severance payments, issued on the basis of a “halachic concept,” or religious law, that mandates one month’s pay for every year served for laid-off employees.

Moskowitz noted that Rabbi Kolko had worked at the school for about 35 years.

(That concept is not universally accepted. A Modern Orthodox Bet Din ruled in 2002 that such payments are not religiously required.)

Court records show that in 2006, the school reported Rabbi Kolko’s salary to the IRS as a little more than $1,000 per month. Moskowitz did not respond to a detailed message asking how this comported with the payments of $3,000 to $9,000 per month to Rabbi Kolko in the months following his departure.

Asked about the payments to Rabbi Kolko via Tendler and Congregation Tzorchei Amcho, his religious charity, Moskowitz said that the yeshiva had borrowed money from the fund to pay Kolko’s severance.

“They had a payroll to keep, and they didn’t have the money for it,” he said. “He [Tendler] fronted the money.”

As for the payments the yeshiva made to Tendler’s free loan fund the day before the fund made payments in the exact same amount to Kolko, Moscowitz said: “The yeshiva has borrowed money from this free loan society and they pay back all the time.”

Halachic Justification

It is unclear just when Yeshiva Torah Temimah terminated its ties with Rabbi Kolko, necessitating severance payments.

Moskowitz said initially that Rabbi Kolko “was put on administrative leave at the beginning of the school year” in 2006 — a termination time at odds with the school’s May 2006 announcement. Asked to explain the meaning of “administrative leave,” Moskowitz said, “Kolko was taken out of the classroom ... until they [could] figure out what to do. He is not employed by them.”

Yet, when pressed on Rabbi Kolko’s status, Moskowitz said, “He is not on leave. The employment relationship has been terminated.”

Asked whether Kolko had been fired, Moskowitz said that the yeshiva “obviously anticipated that he is not going back there. The relationship has been severed.”

Attempts to reach Rabbi Kolko at home were unsuccessful and calls to his civil attorney, Robert Mercurio, were unreturned. Jeffrey Schwartz, Rabbi Kolko’s criminal attorney, said he was not familiar with the financial terms of Kolko’s departure from the school.

But David Framowitz, an alleged victim of Kolko and the subject of the New York magazine piece, said he was “totally shocked and appalled to hear that Yeshiva Torah Temimah has been and is still paying Rabbi Kolko a monthly salary since supposedly firing him in May 2006. YTT has been misleading the public for almost the past two years with this lie. ... Is this what parents are paying their hard earned tuition for?”

Tax Discrepancies On Pay

Meanwhile, the records filed in response to the discovery request show another anomaly. Prior to his departure, Rabbi Kolko apparently was paid sums by the school or entities linked to it far in excess of the salary the school reported to the IRS.

In 2005, the records show, Torah Temimah reported Rabbi Kolko received $10,067 in wages, tips and other compensation. But financial transaction reports filed with the court show the school paid him $73,400, in multiple payments of varying size each month, all of them described as “reimbursement.” Moskowitz said these payments were actually Rabbi Kolko’s salary, dismissing their being labeled “reimbursement” as “an internal accounting issue.”

In 2006, an employee earnings statement for Rabbi Kolko lists his “reg[ular] salary” from the school for the months of June through August as $1,000 per month. But an additional statement shows him getting the same amount during this period from the Religious Education Association, a religious charity founded and controlled by Rabbi Marguiles, the yeshiva administrator.

Financial transaction records also filed with the court show checks that appear to correspond with these outlays. Deductions seem to have left Rabbi Kolko with $1,844 per month from these two sources, for a total of $5,532 during the three months in question. Additionally, the transaction records show, the school disbursed another $12,900 to Rabbi Kolko, once again, all listed as unspecified “reimbursements.”

For the entire year of 2006, these records show, Rabbi Kolko received more than $53,800 from the school and from Rabbi Marguiles’ charity — considerably more than the $1,000 per month listed as his school salary.

Moskowitz, the yeshiva’s attorney, did not respond to repeated detailed messages seeking clarification of these discrepancies. But in earlier interviews, he strongly defended the school’s payments to Rabbi Kolko after his departure.

“You mean that they give somebody that has not been convicted of anything, who worked for an institution for 35 years and then gets laid off, [severance] is newsworthy?” he said. “I don’t think so.” Rabbi Kolko, he noted, has not so far been convicted of anything.

Dowd, the attorney for those claiming Rabbi Kolko had molested them, would have none of this. “If you want, hold the money someplace . . . and then pay him later on if he is exonerated,” he said. “Who is going to complain then? But the idea that he’s being bought in order to defend himself, and if you will, his defense is being paid by the school that was charged with the protection of the children that he abused, it’s an outrage.”

Noting the New York City Department of Education’s policy of suspending teachers charged with sexual misconduct without pay, Dowd said, “I would hope that a yeshiva would hold itself to a higher standard than the New York City school system. ... The only severance that he should have received was a boot out the door.”

Hella Winston teaches sociology at Queens College. Larry Cohler-Esses is editor at large.
================================

Unchosen: The Hidden Lives of Hasidic Rebels (Hardcover)
by Hella Winston (Author)

http://www.amazon.com/Unchosen-Hidden-Lives-Hasidic-Rebels/dp/0807036269

I highly recommend you read the book.

EM

Child sex arrest of Danbury man stuns rabbi, coach said...

Child sex arrest of Danbury man stuns rabbi, coach
By John Pirro Staff Writer
Article Last Updated: 04/04/2008

DANBURY -- A Danbury man accused of seeking sex with a mother and her 7-year-old daughter was a respected member of his temple and a coordinator for a local youth soccer league.

The arrest of 46-year-old Leonard Shuster in Clermont, Fla., Tuesday shocked members of the Brewster synagogue he attended with his wife and three sons and those who knew him from his involvement with the Danbury Youth Soccer Club.

"That is pretty scary," said Vitas Kotach, of Danbury, who coached a team of 5- and 6-year-olds last year in a league for which Shuster was a volunteer coordinator.

It remains unclear how much direct contact Shuster had with the young players, or whether he was still involved with the organization at the time of his arrest. Numerous attempts to contact soccer club president Mike Diker and his wife, Liz, who also is associated with the club, were unsuccessful Thursday. A person who answered the phone at their residence said they were out for the evening.

Shuster, who is a sales analyst for a beverage company, also is a member of the board of directors at the Temple Beth Elohim.

"I only know what I read," said Rabbi Solomon Acrish. "My concern is for the family and the children. They have to be protected."

While Shuster was involved with activities at the temple, the rabbi said he was "most definitely not" in contact with children there.

Shuster was arrested by detectives from the Lake County Sheriff's Office as the result of an Internet sting operation

that began in January, according to Sgt. John Herrell, a spokesman for the agency.

Over the past three months, investigators said, the Danbury man conducted an online correspondence with a detective Shuster thought was a 32-year-old woman with a 7-year-old daughter.

The conversations quickly turned sexual, and in subsequent e-mails and telephone conversations, Shuster discussed plans "to meet with the mother and her daughter for sexual activity," the investigator, Detective Chris Loyko, said.

Authorities said Shuster advised the "mother" how to groom the young girl for sex -- by sleeping together naked and going around the house without clothes. Shuster also sent the mother at least 120 images of child pornography, according to the arrest warrant affidavit.

Shuster finally e-mailed that he would be coming to Florida on Tuesday, ostensibly on a business trip but really for a sexual encounter, authorities said. He was taken into custody while looking for what he thought was the woman's house.

"This is a shock," said Laurie Amatulli, whose husband, Rich, worked as a coach in the league coordinated by Shuster.

"He was the go-to person when you need shirts or registration information," she said. "Never once was there an issue. He was always very professional."

Authorities said Shuster admitted communicating with the mother and sending child pornography, and told investigators he only transmitted the images from his computer at work.

He remains in custody pending a court hearing.

Contact John Pirro

at jpirro@newstimes.com

or at (203) 731-3342.

Leonard Shuster said...

http://www.newstimes.com/latestnews/ci_8784469

A married Danbury man with three children who flew into Florida's Orlando International Airport Tuesday on his way to meet a mother and her 7-year-old daughter for sex was instead arrested on 126 criminal counts, according to authorities.

Detectives had pretended to be the woman in Internet correspondence with the man, Leonard Shuster, 46, since January, according to police.

He was caught while looking for what he thought was the woman's house in Clermont, Fla., according to Sgt. John Herrell, a public information officer for the Lake County Sheriff's Office in Lake County, Fla.

Shuster is a sales analyst for a Connecticut beverage company, he said.

On Jan. 4, Shuster contacted someone in a Yahoo chat room whom he thought was a 32-year-old woman with a 7-year-old daughter, police said.

"The communications became sexual in nature and plans were eventually made to meet in the Clermont area for the aforementioned sexual activity," Herrell said.

Shuster remains in police custody pending a court hearing.

Besides 120 counts of transmitting child pornography, he was arrested on charges including attempted capital sexual battery of a person under 12 years old, traveling to meet a minor, transmission of child pornography, attempted lewd and lascivious battery, and prohibition of certain acts in connection with obscenity.

Shuster confessed to using a work laptop to talk to someone he believed to be a 32-year-old. He said he "only would send images of child pornography from his work computer," according to police.

"The defendant did admit that he sent numerous images of child pornography to what he thought was the mother and stated that he did talk about having sex with the mother and her 7-year-old daughter."

He also told police he sent adult and child pornography to the mother so the 7-year-old could look at it, police said.

Contact Karen Ali

at kali@newstimes.com

or at (203) 731-3341.

Soloveitchik’s wisdom said...

Using meticulous notes saved from the 1970s, Rabbi Yosef Adler compiled "Haggadah for Passover with Commentary based on the Shiurim of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik" while on sabbatical in the summer of 2006. It was published last month by Urim Publications ($22).

Adler, the longtime rabbi of Cong. Rinat Yisrael in Teaneck and head of school of the Torah Academy of Bergen County there, was a disciple of the man referred to respectfully as "the rav" in the world of Yeshiva University and centrist American Orthodoxy.

Rabbi Pesach Lerner said...

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/125788



Rabbi Lerner: 'Money Trail Might Provide Answers'
28 Adar Bet 5768, 04 April 08 09:27
by Hillel Fendel

(IsraelNN.com) Rabbi Pesach Lerner, Executive Vice President of the National Council of Young Israel and a long-time activist on behalf of Jonathan Pollard, agrees with Pollard that the "money trail" may lead to clues as to why the government has botched the job of attaining his release from prison.

Rabbi Lerner spoke with IsraelNationalRadio.com's Yishai Fleisher this week about Pollard, who is serving his 23rd year of a life prison sentence for passing classified information to Israel. "Pollard did not pass any information having to do with other agents," Rabbi Lerner said, "but just information that should have gone to Israel in any event, on matters that could have been dangerous to Israel and on the capabilities of our enemies."

"During the Gulf War in Iraq," Lerner said, "Israel started handing out gas masks; from where did they get five million gas masks all of a sudden? The answer is that Jonathan had warned them that Iraq had gas-weapon capabilities - and Israel was prepared, because Jonathan sacrificed his life to save the State of Israel."

Fleisher noted that actually, "he didn't need to sacrifice his life, because Israel could have stood up for him and demanded his release; he's sitting in prison much longer than anyone who has committee that type of crime."

Lindenstrauss and Olmert
Rabbi Lerner discussed the recent flare-up involving the investigation by State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss into why Israel has failed to attain Pollard's release: "Lindenstrauss had been instructed by the Knesset to investigate the matter, and he did so - quietly and systematically. All of a sudden, last week, Lindenstrauss read in the papers that government sources were accusing him of sabotaging efforts to have Pollard released! He of course demanded to know how this suddenly came about..."

Lindenstrauss implied - and Knesset Control Committee Chairman MK Zevulun Orlev said openly - that it was Prime Minister Olmert himself who sought to undermine the investigation, or Lindenstrauss, or both.

Follow the Money!
Rabbi Lerner has his own explanation - backed by Jonathan Pollard himself -as to what caused the sudden attack on Lindenstrauss:

"The background is that over the past several months, people have been writing to the Prime Minister on behalf of Pollard, and time after time, the Prime Minister has responded that the government has been helping the Pollards financially and in other ways. The problem is, though, that it's not true at all.

"The Pollards went to the Supreme Court, saying, 'If the government is giving us money, can you show us a copy of a check? Can you show us where the money went? We haven't seen any of it.' The State then responded that it cannot answer those questions because 'it would hurt our efforts to release him.' I would love to know what these efforts are...

"Now, with the government claiming that it's been giving him money, and with the Pollards not having received any of it, it could be that someone began to fear that Lindenstrauss would start looking for this money - and maybe even find something! It's just speculation at this point, but as Jonathan has been saying, someone has to start looking at the money trail!"

Pollard to Lindenstrauss: Keep Up the Good Work!
Pollard himself wrote a reassuring letter last week to Judge Lindenstrauss, asking him to proceed in his investigation without fear. Pollard wrote that the reports of "anonymous government officials accus[ing] you of 'torpedoing delicate efforts' to secure my release [are] NOT about efforts to secure my release. Nor is this attack (as MK Orlev suggested) political revenge by Olmert against you. It is about MONEY!"

Pollard noted that he had earlier sent a letter to Olmert asking him to "account for 23 years of funds that have apparently been misappropriated and illegally reallocated... I asked the Prime Minister why his office insists on disseminating lies saying that my wife, I and my associates are receiving full financial support from the government, when in fact we have never received a single cent from the Government of Israel in the 23 years that I have been in prison. If the Government claims it is allocating resources for me and my wife, but we have never received the money, then who is getting the money?"

Between Olmert and Bush
Pollard also wrote, "Allow me to reassure you one more time: your investigation of the Israeli Government's handling of the Pollard case cannot torpedo efforts to secure my release. There are no efforts to secure my release. One man and one man alone can free me - George Bush; and one man has to make the official request for my release - Ehud Olmert. Our sources in Washington confirm that Olmert has not asked for my release."%ad%

In Time For Passover
"I can be home in time for Passover," Pollard's letter states. "The only thing standing in the way of my immediate release is that Olmert's unwillingness to have me home is well known to the President. The rumors that Bush will free me as a gesture to Israel either for the 60th anniversary or at the end of his term are unfounded. Bush will not make a gesture to Israel which Israel has not asked for and which the PM does not want!"

Rabbi Lerner, who has visited Pollard many times in prison, said, "He is not allowed near radio or TV, but he is very well-versed and informed on current events. He reads books, knows a lot, and he's very bright. I have said that when he gets out, he should travel the country and give lectures on Judaism, and on the meaning of self-sacrifice... He is a joy to be with, and it's a miracle that he is this way even after 23 years, under the difficult conditions that he has faced... Last year, on the [week-long] Passover holiday he was allowed only one box of matza for the whole holiday... People should keep on praying for Yehonatan ben [son of] Malkah, and talk about him. People have to be informed..."

pesach price war said...

Specialist shops take on the big guns in a Pesach price war
04/04/2008
By Jay Grenby and Jodie Mablin
Matzahs are in the front line as supermarkets and specialist kosher retailers wage a Pesach price war this month, offering substantial savings to those prepared to shop around.

A JC investigation reveals that a basket of Passover essentials will cost only marginally more than last year — and in some cases, less.

Tesco is particularly price competitive, with the 18 items surveyed in a North London store costing £28.02 this year, 13p down on 2007. The store is enticing customers with offers including a half-priced box of Rakusen’s matzahs (49p) and 65p jars of Mrs Elswood cucumbers. A bottle of Palwin No 10 wine is being sold for under a fiver.

One leading Golders Green retailer is so incensed by what he considers unfair practice that he is considering

removing the Rakusen’s matzahs on Tesco offer from his shelves.

Other stores have found a cunning way of competing, with one North-West London shop owner admitting that he, and others, have bought the 49p boxes from Tesco for reselling in their own businesses. “It is perfectly permissible,” he maintained, “as long as we don’t abuse the rule of acquiring more than one case per customer — though I do have a big family!”

Rakusen’s denies offering a special deal to Tesco, with a director, Alan Pridmore, telling the JC that it was “unable to influence the price of our products on any supermarket shelf. We do sympathise with the problems of smaller retailers, but is a situation not of our making.”

Tesco argues that it is trying to offer customers the best value. “Remember that we are talking about one or maybe two products here — it’s not as though we were slashing prices across the whole range,” a spokesman said. “I would be very surprised if a half-price promotion, available for a limited time only, had any lasting impact on independent retailers.”

However, not all small shopkeepers were worried by Tesco’s aggressive pricing. At Just Kosher in Borehamwood, Avi Hotter reasoned that “customers will shop where they know they will get service and a full product range. We have more than 3,500 different kosher l’Pesach lines on our website. None of the supermarkets can match that.”

These sentiments were echoed by Stephen Rosenhead of Steve’s Deli in Stanmore. “Anyone who wants to keep kosher for Pesach and wants to do a complete Pesach shop can’t do it at Tesco, who don’t have the range of products to meet their needs. On a whole basket of Pesach products, I think we are still competitive.”

In our survey, Manchester-based

Titanics — which delivers throughout the North and beyond — came in at a highly competitive £28.84 for the full 19-item basket. But delivery charges would be extra.

Savvy consumers can cut their budgets by combining supermarket offers with special offers in kosher shops. For example, a litre of sunflower oil in Just Kosher is 40p cheaper than in Tesco and Sainsbury’s.

Joining the Pesach shoppers on Wednesday, the JC found Rabbi Maurice Michaels stocking up at Kosher Kingdom in Golders Green Road. He had made the journey, he said, because of a lack of kosher options in Ilford. He said that he would not be tempted by the Tesco price cuts as he was not a fan of Rakusen’s matzahs.

Also in Golders Green, regulars at Kay’s delicatessen were loyal to their store. “I wouldn’t go to Tesco,” Renée Eckstin insisted. “I buy everything here. Luckily I am away for Pesach this year. It is an expensive time.”

Staff explained that efforts were made to peg prices by selling matzahs at 75p. “That’s cost price.”

However, the Tesco Express in Golders Green has only a limited kosher section. Duty manager Pragnesh Patel said a plea had gone out to head office for more supplies. “Much of the Jewish community shop here and people buy in bulk so we are losing out on business. They will just go to Kosher Kingdom instead.”

It was a different story at the big Brent Cross Tesco, where the Pesach offers are prominently displayed. A single case (15 boxes) limit was being enforced on family packs of matzahs. Shoppers milling around the price-cut items were phoning friends and family to ask if they should buy in bulk.

Rosalind Eger said that it was well worth travelling from Ealing. “I am amazed at the prices here and I am stocking up.”

Customer-services manager Billy Khan reported heavy demand and was already looking to the end of the festival. On Monday April 28, the store will open at 12.01pm so that customers can stock-up on post-Pesach necessities.

Alon Israel Oil Company Ltd. said...

Rabbis increase pressure on Alon
A boycott call may be joined by removal of a kosher supervision certification at Shefa Shuk.
Ilanit Hayut 3 Apr 08 18:28
The dispute between Alon Israel Oil Company Ltd. and the haredi (ultra-orthodox) community is intensifying. Sources inform ''Globes'' that the Edah Haredit communal organization is joining the official ban against the company being organized by rabbinical leaders, and that official contacts between the company and the haredi community have been suspended altogether.

The Edah Haredit has decided that if an official ban is announced, it will remove its Badatz kosher certifications for the fruits and vegetables at Alon Group's supermarket chain Shefa Shuk. The manager of the kosher certification committee of the Edah Haredit, Rabbi Gavriel Poppenheim, told "Globes" today, "The moment that the rabbis will go against something, Edah Haredit will join them. We won't be able to give kosher certification to Shefa Shuk."

The company that supplies fruits and vegetable to Shefa Shuk, said in response, that it will prepare to absorb heavy losses and to supply produce to Shefa Shuk on the basis of a different kosher certification.

The rabbinical committee of the haredi community continued today to collect signatures of rabbinal leaders for a boycott of purchases from Alon Group, including its retail subsidiaries, Blue Square Israel Ltd. (NYSE: BSI; TASE: BSI) and Shefa Shuk.

Edah Haredit rabbinical committee secretary Rabbi Yitzhak Goldknopf said today, "The signature campaign is gaining strength. When we finish collecting the signatures, they'll be kept in a safe, and we'll set a deadline for [Alon Group chairman] David Weissman, and he will either announce the closing of stores on Shabbat or we'll separate."

The dispute between Weissman and the rabbis erupted three weeks ago. The rabbinical committee published announcements in haredi newspapers calling on readers "not to maintain business contacts with" Dor Alon Energy in Israel (1988) Ltd. (TASE:DRAL), Blue Square, and Shefa Shuk because another retail chain owned by Alon Group, AM:PM, is open on Saturdays.

The parties have been in talks since the announcement. The haredim rejected a compromise offered by Alon Group, and after the last meeting on Friday, the rabbis decided to step up their measures.

No response from Alon Group was available by web-posting.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on April 3, 2008

Aaron Schechter said...

I'm working on having Isaac Hersh sent to a jail like this one. He's extremely disturbed.


Sex abuse, violence alleged at teen jails across U.S.

* Story Highlights
* U.S. Justice Department suing 11 jurisdictions, alleging abuse of teen inmates
* Girls as young as 13 say they were shackled for days at Mississippi lock-up
* An official at a Texas jail allegedly offered birthday cake for sex with teen
* "It's a nationwide crisis," says expert with 30 years experience in juvenile justice

By Ashley Fantz
CNN

JACKSON, Mississippi (CNN) -- Girls as young as 13 say they were shackled for weeks at a time in Mississippi.

A Texas teen was allegedly offered birthday cake in exchange for sex.

A guard drove his knee into the neck of a frail suicidal Ohio boy after the youth was wrestled to the ground and held down by other guards who stripped him and covered his face with a smock, a state report said.

More than two dozen girls at an Indiana lock-up describe "networking" -- their term for sneaking into each other's cells to have sex, with no interference from guards.

This is a glimpse into what America's juvenile jails look like, according to lawsuits, criminal cases and experts who have spent years delving into what they call a broken system.

"It's a nationwide crisis that has been going on for years, one the public has never been told the extent of," said psychiatric social worker Jerome Miller, the co-founder of the National Center on Institutions and Alternatives, who has evaluated and helped reform juvenile jails for more than three decades.

This summer, Mississippi plans to close Columbia Training School, a juvenile facility that houses mostly minor offenders. They are often runaways from abusive homes. Listen to stories of Mississippi's teen lock-ups »

Erica was 16 when she was sentenced to Columbia after running away, a probation violation of an earlier marijuana conviction.

She admits she was a girl quick to sass her parents, full of anger about the death of a relative that happened around the same time Katrina wrecked her family's Bay St. Louis, Mississippi, home.

Nervously touching a sparkly barrette in her red hair, she cries as she describes how guards forced her legs into tight metal shackles. She said she was cuffed and chained when she ate and used the bathroom -- and was even forced to play soccer that way against other girls.

Guards called her "Chain Gang," she said.

"I will always remember them things around my ankles, the way they cut into me," she said, pulling up her pant leg to show slash-mark scars on her ankles and heels. "They made you feel like you were nothing." VideoWatch teen explain suicide attempt was cry for help »

Represented by attorneys with the Southern Poverty Law Center, Erica and nine other girls housed at Columbia are suing the state, claiming they endured a range of sexual and physical abuse, including shackling. Don Desper, a licensed therapist and former employee at Columbia who opposed the practice, told CNN it was used to prevent the teens from escaping.

In a handwritten affidavit, a 15-year-old girl described a male guard molesting her. She wrote: "He came inside my cell half way half of his body and he started touching me and he tryed (sic) to kiss me and then he left he came back with my snack in his hand and he opened my cell again and he started grabbing me around my waist and he tryed (sic) to stick his hands in my pants and I started crying."

When the lawsuit was filed in 2007, a U.S. Justice Department monitor was making periodic inspections at Columbia as part of a 2005 settlement with Mississippi in a previous case. The Justice investigation that led to that settlement found Columbia youths were hog-tied, forced to strip and eat their own vomit and were held in isolation in what was called the "Dark Room," a windowless room with a hole in the floor used as a toilet. Read the Justice Department report that describes girls being shackled to poles

Hundreds of youths have allegedly suffered similar abuse at juvenile detention centers across the United States, according to experts interviewed by CNN and court records checked for this story.

The U.S. Justice Department has sued nine states and two territories alleging abuse, inadequate mental and medical care and potentially dangerous methods like the use of restraints. The department doesn't have the power to shut down facilities -- states do -- but through litigation it can force a state to improve its detention centers and protect the civil rights of jailed youths.

Another facility under Justice scrutiny is Oakley Training School near Jackson, Mississippi, which was sued by the department at the same time as Columbia. Gov. Haley Barbour recently announced Columbia's inmates would be transferred this summer to Oakley when Columbia is closed.

But the Justice Department said Oakley has satisfied barely a fraction of requirements the department set for it years ago. According to a March 2008 Justice report, there is an "enormous amount of work" needed to make Oakley a safe and productive place to rehabilitate troubled teens.

Barbour would not respond to questions for this report. The Mississippi Department of Human Services, which runs Columbia and Oakley, refused to answer most of a CNN public records request citing pending litigation and also declined to be interviewed.

The U.S. Justice Department could not talk specifically about ongoing cases, but civil rights division assistant attorney general Lisa Krigsten noted the department is going after double the number of juvenile jails for civil rights violations during the Bush administration than in any previous administration.

"We take this seriously and are committed to protecting the vulnerable children who are in these places," she said.

A CNN check of other juvenile facilities shows that, despite years of court wrangling, serious problems persist.

In Ohio, a dozen employees at the Scioto Juvenile Correctional Facility have been indicted since 2003 on charges relating to physical and sexual abuse of youth, according to a May 2007 Justice report. Five were convicted of various charges, including sexual battery and assault; six cases were dismissed and a jury found one employee not guilty.

In January, a state-hired consultant blamed a "culture of violence" in Ohio's juvenile jails for numerous abuses. The expert's report details examples of "egregious use of force" by guards and included a video he viewed of a 2007 incident in which a "frail" boy who was threatening to harm himself was restrained by guards.

The boy was wrestled to the ground, cuffed and stripped, with one guard seen putting his full body weight on the boy's back while driving his knee into the boy's neck.

A so-called "Suicide Smock" was placed "over his airways," the report said. "The youth actually screams that he can't breathe."

In response to the report, the Ohio Department of Youth Services, which oversees detention facilities, has installed more surveillance cameras and beefed up its mental health care staff, spokeswoman Andrea Kruse said.

"We're doing everything we can to improve," she said.

On Thursday, Ohio announced settlement of a suit brought by Children's Law Center of Kentucky. It will add up to $30 million annually to its juvenile justice budget and hire more guards, psychologists and teachers for its system.

Accusations similar to those made in Ohio were made at a Florida boot camp in 2006. Martin Lee Anderson, 14, was seen on surveillance tape being beaten and restrained by guards. Anderson later died. Seven guards and a nurse were acquitted of manslaughter in October.

Since then, the NAACP's Florida chapter has called for an investigation of the state's teen jails, noting at least seven youths have died at lock-ups since 2000, including 17-year-old Omar Paisley, who died at a Miami detention center of a ruptured appendix after begging for help during three days that he was in pain.

A grand jury found that two nurses repeatedly failed to help Paisley. They are charged with third degree murder and manslaughter, have pleaded not guilty and are scheduled for trial in July.

Florida issued a report in January asking for more than 50 changes to its system and a partnership with the Department of Education to attack problems before kids drop out of school. Overall, the report calls for treating troubled kids with therapy as an alternative to jail.

Texas is grappling with the fallout from reports of long-term sexual abuse at its facilities, where, since 2000, more than 90 Texas Youth Commission employees -- roughly one a month -- have been sanctioned or fired for sexual misconduct with adolescents, commission spokesman Jim Hurley told CNN.

Texas granted early release in February to a 16-year-old girl who attempted suicide after she was allegedly molested repeatedly by a male guard. The guard was indicted in December on four counts of molesting the girl. He was previously charged with raping four other female inmates, but those charges were dropped, said Hurley, after witnesses retracted their accounts.

This spring, two administrators at a west Texas youth facility are scheduled to stand trial on charges they were having sex with juvenile inmates, one allegedly enticing a teen to perform sex acts for birthday cake. The men resigned in 2005, Hurley said.

Texas recently has added hundreds more surveillance cameras and personnel to its facilities to avoid more problems, he said.

"Girls are sexually abused in these institutions more often than the public would believe," said Paul DeMuro, a delinquency expert who in 2002 inspected Columbia for the Justice Department and is now a consultant for the Southern Poverty Law Center. Nationwide, the Justice Department has said 2,821 allegations of sex abuse were made in 2004, the most recent data on the topic available.

An Indiana juvenile judge said there's another dimension of sexual misconduct happening at Indianapolis Juvenile Correctional Facility -- inmate on inmate sex.

State Judge Peter Nemeth is refusing to send female offenders to the lock-up after a team of delinquency experts interviewed a total of 31 girls at the facility. The girls described "networking," or sneaking into each other's cells for sex. Members of the team told CNN that locks on cells were not working, allowing the young women to leave and enter their cells whenever they wish.

One girl interviewed said a guard had participated in the sex.

"It's a dangerous place," said Nemeth, who is sending youths to two other facilities at more than twice the cost to taxpayers. "It seems like chaos to me, very little discipline. The girls say they are running the place."

In March, the Indiana Department of Correction said it is transferring boys at the facility to another lock-up, which Nemeth hopes will allow more staffers to oversee the girls section. "It may be a step in the right direction," he said, but won't necessarily solve the problem of girls frequently having sex with other girls.

Before March, the judge detailed his concerns in two letters to Gov. Mitch Daniels, whose office referred all questions for this story to Indiana Department of Correction spokesman Doug Garrison.

"We disagree with the judge's characterization," Garrison said, adding that no investigation at the facility has substantiated the girls' claims.

When Erica was held at Columbia, she said she didn't think anyone would believe her accounts of abuse. It's taken months of therapy, including some counseling at a YMCA, which she found in her small Mississippi hometown.

Erica talks about wanting to be an attorney. It's the first time in her life she is considering her future. She tries not to think about Columbia, but smiles when she talks about the facility closing.

"I'm happy, real happy," said Erica. "That means nobody is going to get hurt there again."

exposemolesters said...

http://www.petoskeynews.com/articles/2008/04/04/opinion/doc47f633988a8de261815413.txt

Sexual assaults often kept secret

By Noah Fowle News-Review Staff Writer
Friday, April 4, 2008 9:56 AM EDT

Last week, the reaction to the allegations of Phillip Chipman’s criminal sexual indiscretions against a minor were as severe as they were swift.

Most of us display a healthy aversion toward the subject of sexual assaults and we are especially appalled when children are the targets. But perhaps it is this reticence to even speak about the issues behind these deplorable acts that makes it so difficult for victims to come forward.

Unfortunately, molestation and sexual abuse cannot be written off as freak occurrences. Less than a week after Chipman was arraigned, the Emmet County Sheriff’s office arrested a Brutus man based on allegations he inappropriately touched a young girl.

According to Barbara Cross, a psychotherapist at Traverse City’s Maple Clinic, one in three women will be sexually assaulted in their lifetime, while boys face a one in six chance.

“There are so many people affected by these types of crimes that courts often have trouble seating juries for them,” said Cross, who offers expert testimony in cases involving sexual abuse and molestation.

With the problem more wide spread than the general public would like to admit, then why is delayed disclosure so common in these cases?

The answer, Cross says drawing on more than 20 years of experience, is neither simple nor succinct, especially if it involves a family. “It’s a very secretive, intra-family crime, whoever knows becomes guarded because of the very reaction the community has when it comes out.”

Often, an entire family’s standing within the community plummets following these types of charges, and it is not uncommon for the family structure to combust with divorce proceedings and subsequent financial hardships. A complex trauma bond is formed that makes the child almost as invested as the offender in keeping the abuse hidden from the public.

Victims can also be consumed with feelings of guilt and embarrassment, and in some instances face threats of further harm to themselves or their family. They also may mistake the molestation as indicators of their own sexual identity or worry that their failure to report the abuse immediately indicates a level of consent.

“I’ve worked on cases where the offender tells the victim ‘if you don’t say anything, I won’t touch your sister,’” explained Cross. “When that kid graduates or leaves, then the offender begins molesting another sibling in the house. A lot of the time it’s not discovered until one victim leaves the family.”

Much of the confusion around these crimes also stems from a basic misunderstanding of what fuels them. The predominant motivation behind molestation is not sex or desire. Rather it stems from sexualized anger. The real attraction comes from the exploitation of someone weaker. Cross also pointed out that many offenders were themselves victims of abuse — a fact that does not excuse their behavior, but merely helps explains it. “Usually there are multiple problems with the offender. They don’t have much self-respect or self-esteem, and could be dealing with many other psychological problems.”

The key to helping victims move on and heal is offering support. As few as 6 percent of cases make it to trial where victims must testify. But the most important fact remains understanding that victims are never at fault.

Noah Fowle 439-9374 - nfowle@petoskeynews.com

evision said...

www.sangambayard-c-m.com

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It is unfortunate that it has come to this. It is a big darn shame it has come to this. It is very hurtful that it has come to this. But yet, IT HAS COME TO THIS. It has come at the price of a GREAT CHILUL HASHEM. It has come to Hashem having to allow his holy name to be DESECRATED so that his CHILDREN remain SAFE. Shame on all those responsible for enabling and permitting Hashem's name to be desecrated! When you save children you save the future. You save the future you save generations. You save generations you save lives. You save lives you have saved the world!!!!!!!