Who Else Has Thompson Arrested?

Kenneth Thompson

Kenneth Thompson

The blogger, Jewish Whistleblower stopped posting in 2005. But he’s continued to monitor abuse in the orthodox world, assiduously scouring press reports and court records. On a regular basis he shares important facts by commenting on Frum Follies and other blogs. His reporting of facts is consistently accurate and he’s alerted me to many things I did not know. —  Yerachmiel Lopin

Guest Post by Jewish Whistleblower

Earlier this week Brooklyn DA Kenneth Thompson’s office released 20 names (of defendants in cases where former DA Hynes refused to divulge the names because they involved Orthodox Jewish suspects and/or victims) to Sue Edelman of the New York Post. 14 of those names have yet to be publicly reported. http://nypost.com/2014/08/10/brooklyn-da-exposes-hidden-orthodox-sex-cases-kept-secret/

Today we learned from the NY Jewish Week that the DA’s office claims that “Since January, Thompson’s office has arrested seven people accused of sexual abuse in the Orthodox Jewish community”. http://www.thejewishweek.com/news/new-york/abuse-advocates-weigh-thompson

Who are these people? We need to know so we can evaluate whether the corrupt Hynes legacy (one step closer to criminal charges http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/grand-jury-probe-brooklyn-hynes-article-1.1901435 ) including protecting abusers in our community has finally come to an end.

I have been able to determine only 5 of the 7 arrested in Brooklyn this year:

I don’t believe Brooklyn Rabbi Samuel Waldman ( https://frumfollies.wordpress.com/2014/03/06/rabbi-shmuel-waldman-who-teaches-at-bais-yaacov-arrested-for-child-pornography/ ) is one of the cases as Rabbi Waldman was charged with Federal crimes.

I don’t believe Rabbi Menachem Tewel AKA Mendel Tevel is one of the cases as he was arrested at the end of 2013 ( http://failedmessiah.typepad.com/failed_messiahcom/2013/11/tewel-pleads-not-guilty-678.html ). Rabbi Tewel’s next court appearance is September 4, 2014.

Then again I don’t know how the Brooklyn DA’s office keeps these statistics and that is one of the points of this exercise, to determine what the real statistics are.

[Below is my best attempt to construct a list of the seven arrests claimed by Thompson in 2014]

Jerry Brauner

Jerry Brauner

1) Jerry Brauner arrested January 6, 2014
Next court appearance is September 10, 2014.

2) Jose Fernando (employee at Shlomy’s Bakery) arrested February 12, 2014
Next court appearance is May 28, 2015.

L to R: Joseph Schwartz, Garbage Can

Joseph Schwartz

3) Moshe Shemtov arrested April 26, 2014
Next court appearance is August 15, 2014.

4) Joseph Schwartz arrested January 29, 2014
Next court appearance is September 9, 2014.

Yosef (Gad) Ederi

Yosef (Gad) Ederi

5) Yosef Ederi arrested June 13, 2014
Next court appearance is December 19, 2014.

6) Unknown

7) Unknown

Any one have ideas as to the remaining names?

It is imperative we monitor all cases going forward and hold the current DA’s office to the high standard necessary to protect our children and community from the monsters that thrived under Hynes. No more fixers. No more sweetheart deals without jail time or public sex offender registration like Rabbi Yehuda Kolko and Rabbi Lippa/Lewis Brenner. We will expose the predators, the fixers, the enablers and the protectors and any other corrupt entities that protect the predators. This will be done publicly like never before. No more corruption in Brooklyn. The Hynes legacy will end.


24 thoughts on “Who Else Has Thompson Arrested?

  1. Ederi may not really belong on the list. He was convicted of a sex crime for which he was arrested under Hynes. He finished his sentence and failed to register within 10 days as a sex offender. He was picked up and charged for that offense but immediately deported to Israel. Does Thompson’s count include arrests leading to deportation rather than prosecution. Unfortunately, such quickie deportations leave the charges unresolved and expose Israeli children to an offender.

    Jose Fernando may also not belong on the list. From reports, he is not Jewish. So the question is whether one is included on the list by virtue of being an orthodox Jew, having and orthodox victim, or being nabbed while an employee of kosher food enterprise in a Jewish neighborhood. If inclusion in Thompson’s account is based on the religious identity of the victim, how’s about an orthodox Jew who assaults a non-Jewish child. Does Thompson include them in his count?

    If neither Ederi nor Fernando are included in the count, there are four missing names.

    • The language Thompson’s office used is “seven people accused of sexual abuse in the Orthodox Jewish community”, you’d have to be a Talmudic nitpicker to parse that one.

      • Yes. It could include:
        GentilePerp-GentilePerp in a kosher business or in Boro Park.

        This is just an ambiguity in the word Community.

        “Orthodox” is even more ambiguous. How would they classify a BT gone OTD, or someone hanging around Chabad in CH who has not bought into the whole frum package. And we know how the orthodox community prefers defining away orthodoxy when someone is arrested.

        • I believe all of the following would be included but the first and last might be more uncommon.

          OrthoPerp-GentileVic (can’t think of one such case in Brooklyn in 2014 and might be a more uncommon scenario as predators usually prey on those they can access and manipulate/threaten, easier to do that within a common community rather than go outside the community)
          GentilePerp-GentilePerp in a kosher business or in Boro Park. (can’t think of one case in Brooklyn in 2014 or in any earlier year, a possible but unlikely scenario)

          >How would they classify a BT gone OTD, or someone hanging
          >around Chabad in CH who has not bought into the whole frum package.

          The abuse would still be associated with the Orthodox community in these scenarios.

          >And we know how the orthodox community prefers defining away
          >orthodoxy when someone is arrested.

          And that in part is why proper statistics are necessary so that the abuse minimizers and apologists can’t define away the real problem in our community instead of addressing it.

    • My strong suspicion is that Ederi and Fernando are part of the 7. Both seem to meet the technical requirements of the phrase used by the DA’s office “Since January, Thompson’s office has arrested seven people accused of sexual abuse in the Orthodox Jewish community”. Both were arrested in 2014 in regard to sexual abuse in the Orthodox Jewish community (even though one was arrested for failure to register and the other one is a non-jew who sexually assaulted a Jewish minor) . But part of this exercise is to determine how the statistics are being put together by the DAs office. Previous evaluations of Kol Tzedek and the Hynes era DA office statistics indicated significant padding using cases that should not have been in the statistics.

      I believe “an orthodox Jew who assaults a non-Jewish child” would be included in the statistics as they stand. But I know of no such 2014 case in Brooklyn.

      If it turns out that Tewel and Waldman are on the list then again it would indicate some padding. Perhaps the DAs office coordinated the arrest of Waldman with the Feds and properly included him as such. I don’t know. Tewel may have been included by error because his arrest was at the end of 2013. If so, let’s have the DA’s office correct the statistics. Then again, there may be cases that are not yet public, somewhere between 0 and 4 using the analysis above (and in previous comments), if the DA’s statistics of 7 arrests in 2014 are accurate. If there are cases not being made public, the question is why. We need to determine the list of 7 to answer these questions. Moreover, it is important to identify the remaining 14 on the list of 20 being protected by Hynes. We need to know why these monsters were protected and who the fixers that were involved are. They should not be allowed to continue to maintain their anonymity at the expense of the safety of our community.

      • As an aside, when enumerating the most egregious sweetheart deals in recent years, besides Yehuda Kolko, and Brenner, mentioned in your post, , would not Menachem Mendel Deutsch have made that list? it could be ranked by number of years of offending, number of victims, or rapidity of sweetheart deal?

        • I agree that the deal was egregious. I used Kolko and Brenner as examples as they both are educators with decades of working with children and both have similar reputations. Both were protected for decades by community leaders. The deals they got from Hynes over a decade apart are almost identical. No jail time. No requirement to be on the publicly accessible sex offender registry. Brenner and Kolko have extended families where another member has a similar history (Brenner has a son-in-law Rabbi Ephraim Bryks who is an alleged pedophile, Kolko has a nephew Yosef Kolko who is a convicted pedophile).

          • Yes, I followed the Yosef Kolko case closely. Brenner was “before” my time, ie. before I started following all of this closely. I know that Deutsch got a few months, but they had video surveillance tapes on him, two boys in one day at same “shul”. Am I so naive, that I don’t realize that there are dozens and dozens of cases, equally egregious? (that have gotten off with virtually no time). And then there was Leibovits, (how could I have forgotten Leibovits), what a fiasco. but he did spend a bit of time in jail. and then final few months in city jail, not state prison? Not sure of the significance of that? does that mean that he was less likely to be preyed upon by the usual prison inmates?

            • Actually, Baruch Lebovits is still in jail. Contrary to the incorrect reporting by newspapers who got their information from his lawyers, the Jewish Week’s Hella Winston did the calculation. His effective sentence (after time off for good behavior and time already served was about eight months, of which he has around a half a year left. As for him being preyed on, probably not given all his protektsia in the notoriously corrupt city jail system.

  2. The sadism and verbal demeaning abuse perpetrated on students inures all the students to abuse, and at the end of the day or the end of their schooling all students were affected. In addition to sexual abuse we must put an end to the misfits and sadists teaching in our yeshivoth. The more I read about the beatings meted out by rabbi b. I wonder if he got aroused by them. To ask a boy (Silber) to remove his glasses just seems premeditated. Many years ago I watched moros get pleasure in embarrassing girls and as a teacher observing realized something was off. Only now with the internet did I read about sadomasochism. Oy to all of us and thank you Yerachmiel.

  3. I cannot understand what legal justification there can be for Orthodox Jews to be treated any differently than anyone else accused of a sex crime. This was (is?) clearly ethnic / religious discrimination. Why should a ‘rabbi’ be shielded from the public because he molested a child while a priest, layman, or whomever is not shielded? This is a tremendous chillul Hashem.

  4. JewishWhistleblower – Great to see you back!! And you’re doing great work, as you always did.

    My question is, what would prevent or deter Thompson from padding his numbers? What benefit would he have to stay honest, especially if there is nothing we can do to force him to prove his stated claims?

  5. We can keep the DA’s office from padding the numbers be keeping track of, documenting and publicizing the cases the DA’s office is dealing with as we are trying to do in this post. We can encourage the media to do follow up stories to the previous reporting on these statistics under Hynes. You can see from the recent NY Jewish Week article linked above that reporting in this area is weak. Basically, statistics were taken and quoted from the DA’s office without any evaluation of same. We need to ask these publications and reporters to do better. If the DA claims to have arrested 7 people this year, name them. We need to demand accountability and transparency from the DAs office. We need to expect and demand better and more accurate reporting from the media. Sunlight ultimately is the best disinfectant.

    • Everyone has to do their part.

      Part of the problem previously was that no one wanted to rock the boat. The boat needs to be capsized. Child molesters must be prosecuted.

    • Thank you JW for explaining.

      Do you think in the future you can do some posts with all the information we would need to be active in these matters? I think that would help a lot of us who are willing to be voices, but don’t know where to speak up, what to say, or to whom to address our voices.

      An example would be if the Jewish Week comes out with an article and you think it was poorly done because it just took stats from the DA without evaluating them, you can:
      a) Give us our talking points – what to voice our complaints about.
      b) Tell us the publication and author’s name.
      c) Give us the contact info (email address, fax #, phone #) so that we can lend our voices to the choir asking for accountability, demanding transparency, calling them out on lazy reporting, etc.

      What I’m asking for may seem like a lot of hand-holding. Unfortunately, most people are busy with other things, some are lazy, and others are extremely distracted by personal lives. We may have good intentions, but don’t follow through because there are too many steps for us to take in order to be active. These are not excuses, but they are reasons that some of us don’t do our activism, even at times that we intend to. However, if we had everything at our fingertips – our talking points, who we should be addressing and their contact info, and we didn’t have to first look for that in order to lend our voices, I believe a lot of us would be much more active than we presently are.

      What do you think?

  6. Here’s a tip.

    A few years ago, Baruch Lebovits was sued by the Commissioner of NYC Social Services in New York County Civil Court CV-049043-11/NY. The case came to trial last year. Although Judge Jennifer Schecter denied the City’s demand for an inquest about 9 12 months ago, 10 months ago she ruled to submit on default. I am hoping that means Lebovits lost by refusing to appear instead of him winning by the City not showing up.

    What was the exact nature of this litigation to begin with?

  7. It seems a line of reasoning is that Ortho offenders will ‘get the same sentence’ as offenders from the other populations. In order to evaluate cases one has to compare sentencing of sexual offenders across Brooklyn as well, not just keep track of Ortho. The problem may by systemic. The argument will also be made that ‘each case is different’ and warrants different consideration so it is hard o make generalizations based on charges visa vie sentencing.

  8. Why does this discussion board centered around NY? Why isn’t this discussion more global issues since we are talking about “offenders from other populations” as “one has to ‘compare’ sentencing of sexual offenders? Is it because Thompson is from NY or is it because there are no other Thompson like character notable in other states? Obviously, we know there are bad guys in more then just Brooklyn.

    In Los Angeles the notable characters are more like Dana Cole, defense counsel to three perverted Rabbi’s, most recently notable is Menachem Tewel. It seems what we are hearing here in the west coast is about your DA’s, in the west coast, all we seem to be able to talk about is the Los Angeles notable criminal defense counsels. Or the Judges to whom order women to talk about “blow jobs”.

    Why are there so many cases running through the DA’s office in New York, and absolutely none in Los Angeles? Are there no Orthodox Jewish perverts in Los Angeles or are there no DA’s simple prosecuting them? If there are no offenders in Los Angeles, then shouldn’t everyone stay out of Brooklyn and more to Los Angeles? Is Los Angeles the defender free state for orthodox Jews? Are we living in reality or are we simply still in denial? Let’s present that to our legal analysis team.

    Diane Polonsky

  9. Accused sex offender David Seff who pleaded guilty to misdemeanor harassment is currently suing a Synagogue which I am told is the famous gathering spot known as Rabbi Landau’s.

    Kings Civil Supreme 502585/2014

  10. I have figured out the Thompson criteria for counting to seven though not the actual names. In a nutshell they count if either a defendant or a victim is orthodox, but not based on neighborhood or the proprietor of a business/organization.

    The numbers reported by Hynes were supposed to prove he was combating witness intimidation. Witness intimidation is almost exclusively a problem of Black Hat-on-Black Hat crime. Thus the inclusion of cases where either defendant or victim is not orthodox are irrelevant to the problem of combating witness intimidation.

    The DA has highminded stuff about fighting intimidation but no specifics. That would be OK if we could be confident they are on the ball. Thus far there is no evidence that they are dealing with the problem, nor is there any evidence they have ever investigated the witness intimidation by Boruch Lebovits, his goons the brothers Zalmen, Berrel and Chaim Ashkenazi, or the attorneys complicit in the Kellner fiasco, Arthur Aidala, Alan and Nathan Dershowitz, and ADAs Michael Vecchione, Joseph Alexis, Nicholas Batsides, and Miss Gregory. All of them played roles in bringing false indictments against Samuel (Sam) Kellner which led to an appellate reversal of Lebovits first conviction and 10-32 year sentence. That bought him time to muddle the case and reach a questionable settlement with the testifying victim which laid the groundwork for a subsequent shorter plea bargain deal of 2 years.

    The DA’s office insists it does not want to get into the Hynes game of announcing names and numbers going forward and only obliged the Jewish Week with number because the JW asked the question of how Thompson compares to Hynes. They threw in some highminded boilerplate about not singling out ethnic/religious groups, blah, blah, blah.

    I am OK with that as long as they routinely, and on a non discrimnatory basis release almost all names of every group so the public can know, who in their midst is a potential hazard. We will figure out which of them are our problem in the orthodox community. I say almost because I realize in certain incest charges the naming of the offender all-but names the victim.

    Below is my exchange with the Public Information Office of the Brooklyn DA over August 13-14.

    Dear Ms. Peterson,

    According to Amy Sara Clark’s Jewish Week’s article of 8/13/14 (Abuse Advocates Weigh In On Thompson — http://www.thejewishweek.com/news/new-york/abuse-advocates-weigh-thompson)

    ‘”Since January, Thompson’s office has arrested seven people accused of sexual abuse in the Orthodox Jewish community,’ Peterson wrote.”

    1. I am assuming the quote was accurate. If not please advise me.

    2. Please clarify your uses of the phrase “in the Orthodox Jewish community.”

    2a. Could your count include cases with an orthodox victim but a non-Jewish offender or a Jewish but non-orthodox offender? (e.g., Jose Fernando (employee at Shlomy’s Bakery) arrested February 12, 2014)

    2b. Does your count include cases where the victim is not orthodox but the offender is orthodox? (DA Hynes included a number of such cases in his counts for Kol Tzedek)

    2c. Are you using the term “in the orthodox community” so broadly that its occurrence in a Jewish business in the heart of Boro Park would count even if neither the offender nor the victim are Jewish.

    3. Since you did release names, why did your office not release all of them. Why shouldn’t the public suspect you of cherry picking cases that exaggerate your performance record to date.

    4. I would appreciate your answers in the spirit of transparency promised by candidate Thompson and to improve my ability to accurately report on this area.

    Thanking you in advance for your consideration of my request,


    Yerachmiel Lopin

    PS, I had a guest post on this issue in Frum Follies this morning (https://frumfollies.wordpress.com/2014/08/13/who-else-has-thompson-arrested/)
    The office of the DA replied:
    This is the information I provided to the Jewish Week in response to their inquiry, I believe if you read through it, it will answer your questions. Cases in Orthodox community are based on whether a defendant and/or a victim is Orthodox. Not based on geography. But again, this is not how we categorize cases – it is being done by the press.

    We have seven cases involving sexual abuse allegations in the Orthodox Jewish community since January that have resulted in arrests. We will treat the cases the way we treat all defendants. We usually issue a press release if there has been an interest expressed by the press in a case either at the time of arrest or if a suspect is being sought. We do not release information based on the defendant’s race, ethnicity or religion. We did so with the Post because they had a list of incidents provided to them by the previous administration and asked us for the names of the defendants in those cases. We provided them with what was available on the public record. We released the names asked for by the Post. Others asked how many cases since January, the answer is 7 that we could identify.

    As for intimidation of witnesses, the DA is naturally concerned about that as he is in any cases where that may be a factor, including gang cases, domestic violence cases, and other cases. There are certain protocols that are followed by our office in those cases, which we will not be disclosing as that would tend to undermine their effectiveness.

    Helen Peterson
    Deputy Director of Public Information
    Kings County District Attorney

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