It is my opinion that Rabbi Shmuel (Steven) Krawatsky and his wife acted in bad faith when they filed his defamation lawsuit against the Avrunins, the Beckers (both parents of children they alleged he abused) and blogger/activist Chaim Levin.
I say that because they filed a legally flawed suit that would be dismissed without any discovery phase, subpoenas, depositions, or a trial. This was good for them because it meant the truth would not be exposed in a trial.
They filed it in federal court when it could only be filed in Maryland courts if both the plaintiff (Rabbi K) and one pair of defendants (the Beckers) both lived in MD. They could have dropped the Beckers and just sued the Avrunins (who had moved to Georgia) and Chaim Levin (who lived in NY). But instead they filed in federal court even though every such case goes through a jurisdiction review before anything proceeds. And of course the jurisdiction review determined that the case did not qualify.
Could this have been legal incompetence? Very unlikely. It was a high-priced law firm with decades of experience in damages lawsuits. That means they must routinely decide whether to file in Federal or MD court and have to get it right. This was so simple an error that when I consulted with two other lawyers, I only had to tell them the residences of the parties for them to immediately tell me it is going to be tossed,
I am convinced that Rabbi K was simulating the anguished cry of an unjustly accused man when he was actually terrified of having the truth come out in court. It bought him some time to avoid the scorching trail of facts reported by Hannah Dreyfus in the New York Jewish Week. It allowed his defenders to say, “You see, you see, he is going to nail them in court.”
According to local accounts, Rabbi K is a man of limited means, and he would have had even less after being fired by Beth Tfiloh’s school. So who paid for it? In the past it seems that Tzippy Schorr, his defender, helped him raise money to defend himself in protective services hearings. It is possible that she did it again, or the same crew of donors assembled the money. Why? For one thing to help salvage the reputation of Schorr who took a beating for keeping him employed while knowing of the allegations. She only dropped him after the Jewish Week story. So this lawsuit might have helped her conduct look more defensible. It also gave cover for those who kept using him to lead youth groups in synagogues.
Equally important, the suit served to defame the reputations of those who accused Rabbi K. This is an issue bigger than K. It serves as a warning to others, “Don’t dare go to court and to the media to expose our sex offenders.” That has always been the minhag hamakom (local custom) of the Baltimore orthodox community. And so it remains.