by Paul Berger (Ha'aretz)
February 12, 2012
The power of state freedom of information laws will be tested when a New Jersey lawyer who represents victims of an alleged ultra-Orthodox child abuser faces off against Brooklyn’s district attorney in court later this month.
Michael Lesher will argue in New York State’s highest court, the Court of Appeals, on February 14 that District Attorney Charles Hynes must release a trove of documents.
The papers relate to a decades-long investigation of Avrohom Mondrowitz, an American Orthodox rabbi and self-styled child psychotherapist who fled to Israel from Brooklyn in 1984 before police could arrest him on charges of sodomizing five non-Jewish boys. Mondrowitz, who was indicted on those charges in 1985, is alleged to have abused dozens of Jewish children, too, but because of communal fears of reporting to the secular authorities at the time, many alleged Jewish victims did not come forward.
Lesher, who represents six alleged Jewish victims, has long accused Hynes of dragging his heels on extraditing Mondrowitz from Israel.