The Daas Torah blog has posted another letter by Rabbi Aharon Feldman. He appeared before the Israeli Beis Din (IBD) which is saying the seminaries operated by Elimelech Meisels are now completely safe for students and other schools are forbidden to compete for students registered to start there in the fall.
According the Daas Torah blog of Rabbi Eidensohn, the letter is posted with the consent of Rabbi Feldman. The important revelations include:
- According to the Av Beis Din (chief judge- Rabbi Shafran) Meisels had already confessed and the IBD was not revisiting that finding or claiming any jurisdiction on that question.
- R. Feldman was appointed by the IBD to represent the financial claims of victims of Meisels against him and other culpable seminary staff for abuse or complicity in the abuse. However Feldman concedes that there were two victims who expressly rejected him as an agent but he suggests the court has the power to appoint him to represent other victims. However he provides not an iota of proof that he was chosen by any victim or there was any halachic rationale for him to be appointed as an apitropos (legal guardian/agent) for competent adults whose interests were either represented by others or by the Chicago rabbinical court. If the apitropos appointment is invalid, there was no plaintiff, and the entire proceeding was meaningless.
I have come to suspect that Rabbi Malinowitz manipulated Feldman into believing they could be legally constituted to try charges of monetary damages, while at the same time resolving other issues, cleaning house and saving the seminaries. Thus he misled Feldman and the other dayanim into believing that R. Zev Cohen of Chicago authorized R. Feldman to represent financial claims. The IBD, especially Malinowitz, make very much of the fact that Chicago did not provide them with the evidence of collateral staff enabling. But they ignore the fact that nobody ever went to that court to adjudicate that issue. The court could not find evidence of guilt by other staff with no witnesses and they are using a court with no plaintiff to justify finding the other seminary staff innocent.
This is perfectly logical and utterly absurd. Feldman denies the court set out to whitewash Meisels. He may be right. But they did set out to whitewash the other staff. By legal contrivances and a court with no plaintiff, they rationalized such a finding. At the end of the day, Malinowitz who Feldman and Zev Cohen are all but calling a liar, engineered a meaningless endorsement of the seminaries.
Meanwhile the IBD, realizing that it is operating on shaky grounds and is exposed as halachicly vacuous is trying hard to get Chicago to cooperate with them. If I were the Chicago Beis Din I would sooner invest with Bernie Madoff or place a bet on the Chicago Cubs.