Monday, November 4, 2013
Australia: Sydney detectives have charged a businessman with child sexual abuse offences at Bondi's Jewish Yeshiva center during the 1980s
A 49-year-old man has been charged with two counts of gross indecency against 14 and 16 year old males at the Jewish Center in 1985 and 1986. He has been refused bail and detectives want people with further information about the 1980s offenses to come forward. The arrested man is Daniel Hayman, who has been residing in Los Angeles in recent years. The arrest and charging of Hayman is likely to put some of Australia's most senior rabbinical figures under scrutiny over their failures to act on complaints from victims. Despite complaints, Hayman was never reported to police and left Australia to live in the Los Angles Jewish community, where leaders again acted to shield him. Corporate records show that Hayman was a director of a major Australian Jewish educational arm for several years after his sexual abuse of boys. Hayman recently told one of his victims that Yeshiva spiritual leader Rabbi Pinchus Feldman had admonished him about 25 years ago over his relationship with a boy. The leader of the Organization of Rabbis of Australasia, Moshe Gutnick, in March 2013 revealed that he failed to alert police to an anonymous complaint about Hayman in the 1980s. Rabbi Gutnick said in hindsight that he was wrong not to alert police. Rabbi Feldman said that he had no recollection of any confession of child sex abuse 25 years ago. There is an audio recording of another senior Australian rabbi discussing Hayman's interaction with boys or adolescents. In the tape recording, Rabbi Baruch Lesches said that some of Hayman's victims may have consented. Rabbi Lesches, who was at Bondi Yeshiva at the time of the incidents and now is a major New York Jewish leader, also cautioned against reporting Hayman to police. He later apologised for his private remarks after the audio of his discussion about Hayman was released. Two recent convictions of men associated with Melbourne's Yeshiva college in St Kilda for historic child sex offenses have put the spotlight on the attitudes of Australia's senior orthodox Jewish leaders to handling abuse claims. Victorian detectives are investigating how senior St Kilda Yeshiva figures handled complaints against David Kramer and David Cyprus, who were both employed by the school. Strike Force Bungo was formed in 2012 to investigate child sexual abuse in the Jewish community in Sydney's east. Hayman abused the boys while a volunteer supervisor at a camp run by the Yeshiva center.