Don’t blame the Israeli Government for failing to extradite Malka Leifer

February 6, 2018 by Manny Waks
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I don’t think it’s fair to criticise the Israeli government for the fact that Malka Leifer is seemingly playing the system…writes Manny Waks.

Manny Waks

The last thing we’d want is government interference with the judicial process. The only realistic action the government can take is to introduce legislation. And this isn’t simple, nor does it guarantee that an accused can’t play the system (especially when they’re practically fighting for their life).

It seems that currently the main issue in this case is the judge’s inexplicable decision to place no restrictions on Leifer (she’s only prohibited from leaving the country). Her complete freedom is a slap in the face to her alleged victims and makes her a potential threat to children on a daily basis.

While all action to expedite Leifer’s extradition to Australia may be helpful, especially the recent public lobbying of the Israeli government at all levels (including by some of her courageous alleged victims and senior Australian government officials), it’s important to ensure that our expectations and responses are appropriate and realistic.

Malka Leifer

And let’s not forget the Adass Israel School’s culpability in all of this. As Victorian Supreme Court Justice Jack Rush said in his 2015 civil case ruling: “It is apparent that the persons involved were determined to get Leifer out of the country within a matter of hours of the decision to remove her from her position at the school” and “[i]n such circumstances the alleged perpetrator should not be assisted to urgently flee the jurisdiction. The failure of the board to report the allegations to police prior to arranging Leifer’s urgent departure is deplorable.”

Despite this clear ruling, Adass is yet to publicly acknowledge its sordid past and apologise to its many victims and survivors (and the broader Jewish community for bringing it into disrepute).

Hopefully the ongoing police investigation into the Adass leadership will achieve justice.

We will continue to do what we can to ensure Leifer faces (belated) justice and that she ceases to be a potential threat to children.

Manny Waks is the founder of the child sexual abuse advocacy group Tzedek. He now lives in Israel.

 

Comments

2 Responses to “Don’t blame the Israeli Government for failing to extradite Malka Leifer”
  1. Paul Winter says:

    Sorry, Manny, I beg to differ.

    When a judge makes a clearly ridiculous ruling, the state has a responsibility to appeal that decision.

    When the lunacy persists, legislation is called for, not as a matter of vengeance, but for the sake of justice. From ancient times we have been commanded: justice, justice shall ye seek.

  2. Adrian Jackson says:

    But the people in Melbourne who knew what she did and within 24 hours helped her flee Australia to Israel should be charged by Victoria Police for aiding this alleged criminal after the fact.

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