First witness called against Malka Leifer

September 13, 2021 Agencies
Read on for article

A hearing has begun to find if there’s enough evidence for former ultra-Orthodox school principal Malka Leifer to stand trial on child sexual abuse charges.

Malka Leifer in court June 14, 2018 Photo: Hillel Maeir/TPS

Three women who say they were abused by former ultra-Orthodox school principal Malka Leifer will get their chance to give evidence against her this week.

A hearing is underway in Melbourne Magistrates Court for Leifer who is facing 74 charges including rape and indecent assault allegedly committed while she was head of Melbourne’s Adass Israel School between 2004 and 2008.

Sisters Dassi Erlich, Nicole Meyer and Elly Sapper are among 10 people expected to give evidence during the committal hearing, which is expected to run until next Monday.

Last year they were granted a court order allowing them to speak publicly and under their real names.

The first of the women has been called to give evidence, which is happening in a closed court with only legal teams, a magistrate and Leifer present.

The siblings had asked to give evidence in person but current coronavirus restrictions mean the entire hearing has to be conducted online.

Leifer is also appearing by videolink, from Melbourne’s women’s prison, the Dame Phyllis Frost Centre.

She returned to Australia in January after a year-long extradition process.

The committal hearing will determine if there is enough evidence for Leifer to stand trial on 47 indecent assault charges, 13 counts of committing an indecent act with a child, 11 of rape and three of sexually penetrating a child.
On Monday the court heard no Jewish witnesses would give evidence in the hearing on Thursday, which is Yom Kippur, a high holy day.

Permission was also granted for Leifer to not appear in court that day, but for proceedings to continue in her absence.

Report by: Karen Sweeney/AAP

Speak Your Mind

Comments received without a full name will not be considered
Email addresses are NEVER published! All comments are moderated. J-Wire will publish considered comments by people who provide a real name and email address. Comments that are abusive, rude, defamatory or which contain offensive language will not be published

Got something to say about this?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.