Friday, August 12, 2011

How did child abuser Avraham Mondrowitz escape justice?

Most people have never heard the story of Avrohom Mondrowitz, which has received only a smattering [1] of headlines [2] in the Jewish media. A charismatic and eloquent member of the Ger Hasidic sect of ultra-Orthodox Jews, the 63-year-old claimed to be both a rabbi and a Columbia-trained psychologist. Though he was neither, for years he ran a psychology practice out of his basement, as well as a school for troubled youth. He is also alleged to be one of the worst sexual predators in Brooklyn history.

In 1984, Mondrowitz was accused of sexually abusing four Italian boys. Since then, the number of Mondrowitz’s alleged victims has been estimated at close to a hundred—making him, shockingly, an average pedophile. But given the shame and secrecy surrounding sexual abuse, and his broad network of contacts, the number of alleged victims could actually be much higher. Moshe Rosenbaum, one of the activists who first aired concerns about Mondrowitz in the late 1980s, estimates the number to be 300. If Mondrowitz were to be convicted of so many crimes, he would be the worst sexual predator in the Orthodox community on record.
But that would require a case to be brought against him—which, for a variety of troubling reasons, has never happened.

This fall, the New York Court of Appeals, the highest court in the state, will hear [3] oral arguments pertaining to the release of documents about Mondrowitz. Michael Lesher, an attorney representing several of Mondrowitz’s alleged victims, asked the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office for the documents under New York’s Freedom of Information Law in 2007. A trial court initially ruled in favor of Lesher’s clients, but that verdict was overturned unanimously last year on appeal.[...]


  1. IIRC his troubles only began when non-Jewish victims complained about him, the Jewish ones having kept quiet about it.
    There are also allegations that officials high up in Ger up to and including the Rebbe himself ran interference for him so he could avoid prosecution.

  2. There are also allegations that officials high up in in the U.S. Government up to and including President Reagan himself ran interference for him so he could avoid prosecution.


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