Imploring the Ultra-Orthodox Community to Protect its Children
We believe that the translation is as close to the content of the original article as possible.
The content reflects a concern amongst Jews, that Israel may be a haven for pedophiles, particularly where the Rabbinical Court gets involved.
We believe that wherever there are ultra-Orthodox zealots, there is a safety net for pedophilia. Israel simply needs to stop accepting Jewish sex offenders into its borders, or alternatively send them back to their countries of origin if Israel is uncomfortable jailing the monsters within its borders.
Sexual assault within the ultra-Orthodox community in Israel and abroad is one of the greatest tragedies of our time, of epidemic proportions. It is our position that the Rabbis who allow this continue, who are responsible for rulings such as the one below, are providing de-facto criminal assistance to the very act of sexual assault. The Rabbis who know this is happening and do nothing, in Israel and worldwide, might as well be holding the children down while the pedophiles abuse them.
The crimes and the disastrous impact on the children that follows is solely on the shoulders of those who sit by and do nothing, or worse still, demand silence.
We implore the ultra-Orthodox communities worldwide to take responsibility for what is happening to generations of children and put a stop to it. This is not about “Moser” (reporting), it is a matter of “Pikuah Nefesh” (the health of the soul).
Note to Reader:
The following is an online translation of an article in YNET. The following is the link:
Rabbinical Court: A person suspected of indecent assault on his daughter will receive custody of her
Despite the police’s recommendation to indict him for sexual offenses, and contrary to the opinion of the welfare authorities, the rabbinical court ruled that a man suspected of indecent assault on his daughter would receive custody of his children. Attorney Batya Kahana Dror: “The court puts itself above the criminal law, the police and the prosecution.” Rabbinical Court: “We decide in accordance with the children’s welfare”
The Jerusalem Rabbinical Court ruled that a man suspected of an indecent act against his daughter would receive custody of his children. Ynet learned that the decision was made despite the police’s recommendation to file an indictment against the man for sexual offenses within the family, in a case that is still awaiting the decision of the State Prosecutor’s Office, and contrary to the opinion of the welfare authorities.
B. was arrested last year on suspicion of sexually assaulting his underage daughter and even photographed the act. He did not deny the actions but claimed in his defense that his intention was good – to document the daughter reconstructing sexual offenses allegedly committed by other relatives, as the basis for a complaint on his part.
The father did report the recovery to the welfare authorities, and even transferred the video to them before his arrest, but his explanations did not satisfy the police, which attributed severe sexual offenses to his daughter. She recently completed the investigation, and the findings were transferred to the State Prosecutor’s Office for a decision on whether to file an indictment in the case. According to the criminal record, the offenses in which he is suspected are protected by a minor and the rape of a minor in the family.
At the same time, the parents of the minor are conducting a divorce struggle, focusing on the issue of custody of their children, including the injured daughter. Before the exposure of the video, B. received responsibility for it because of his mother’s precarious medical condition, but after his arrest the Jerusalem Rabbinical Court ruled that they would be transferred to her when the father could fulfill the vision arrangements and meet them only under the supervision of the welfare services.
Criminal proceedings against the father
In recent months, the dayanim changed their decision and ordered the transfer of custody to B. The members of the panel, headed by the head of the rabbinical court, Rabbi Mordechai Ralbag, did so in complete disregard of the advanced criminal procedure being conducted in the father’s case – and contrary to the opinion of the welfare agencies that deal with the family
At first the court appointed a psychologist to supervise B’s meetings with the children. Later his powers were expanded so that he could also recommend the vision arrangements. The mother, through her attorney Adv. Edna Ashkenazi, objected to the appointment and refused to recognize him as an objective party and to cooperate with him.
The psychologist changed his views during the follow-up: his first recommendation was for joint custody, and he later went on to recommend that the children be transferred to the father’s custody, on the basis of an external professional opinion that presented him with a low level of risk. The dayanim eventually adopted the later position, and last month they decided that the guards would be responsible for the guards.
Despite the successive attempt by the welfare authorities to change the court’s decision, it remains the same – while the criminal procedure is still underway and the case awaits the prosecution’s decision to file an indictment against the father. The dayanim explained that they do not accept the position of the caregivers because they claim that there were fundamental defects in their work.
The dayyan precedes the position of head of the Avot Beit Din
The judge, Ralbag, who in the past few days was appointed to be the head of the rabbinic courts in Jerusalem (the president of the religious court), sought to limit the significance of the decision, and remarked that the transfer of custody to the father should not be considered a real change in the court’s position, Of B, then the children were in his possession.
As a result, the mother’s attorney, Batya Kahana-Dror, appealed to the legal advisor of the Ministry of Social Affairs, requesting that the legal advisor report to the children on behalf of the children and work to remove them from B. “There is no dispute that as long as the father is under criminal investigation for sexual abuse of his children, he can not be a custodial parent,” she argued. “Amazingly, this basic norm is not taken for granted by the court.”
“The rabbinical court itself is above the criminal law, the police and the prosecution – and this time it can not be argued that ‘this is the halachah,'” she added. “On the day we note the struggle against violence against women, we must pay attention to the negative message from a judicial authority that belittles police and prosecution investigations, and thus covers and even encourages the social malaise of violence and sexual abuse in the family.”
Court: “There were flaws in welfare work”
The Rabbinical Court’s administration said in response: “This is a complex case in which discussions have been held and detailed decisions have been made, and it is impossible to go into detail at this stage. On the opinion of six dayanim in the regional court. ”
“In practice, the Social Affairs Ministry admitted that there were flaws in its work, among other things, including the fact that experts’ opinions were not before the members of the committee before its recommendations were issued, and therefore the decision committee of the welfare authorities will convene soon to reconsider its recommendations. In accordance with the totality of the evidence brought before it. ”
The rabbinical court also noted that the woman had filed an application for permission to appeal, but this was rejected by the Rabbinical Court, which explained: “There were fundamental flaws in the manner in which the welfare office dealt with problems that inevitably radiate its recommendatio