Chabad Rabbi Busted On Child Sex Abuse Charges

By Shmarya Rosenberg (
August 11, 2014

The Be'er Sheva District Court filed an indictment against Chabad Rabbi Sholom Pevzner for repeated child sex abuse against a number of child victims, the Israeli news website Walla! reported.

The 45-year-old Pevzner worked as a kosher food supervisor for Chabad’s kosher supervision in the heavily Chabad town of Kiryat Malachi.

He allegedly sexually abused four minors from his neighborhood from 1997 through 2000, and fled to the US in 2002 to escape prosecution after the alleged victims’ parents filed criminal complaints against him. He was reportedly arrested when he finally returned to Israel, was indicted and is currently still in custody.

But despite Israel’s strict border controls, Pevzner – who is a member of a powerful Chabad family that includes senior Chabad emissaries in France and other locations – was only arrested after one of his victims went to police and complained that Pevzner was living openly in Israel without arrest or prosecution.

Chabad has an official no tolerance policy for child sex abuse, but in practice allegedly rarely reports abusers who are part of powerful Chabad families. The Nahalat Har Chabad neighborhood of Kiryat Malachi, where Pevzner lives, has allegedly had previous problems with child sex abuse coverups ordered by Chabad leadership.

Pevzner’s victims were as young as 8-year-old. Pevzner allegedly attacked them in his home, in the slaughterhouse where he worked as a kosher supervisor, in the local Chabad synagogue, and in the local mikva (ritual bath), and even allegedly gave the 8-year-old victim a popsicle after abusing him.

Pevzner allegedly took a 14-year-old victim with him on work trips and abused him in the slaughterhouse Pevzner worked in and elsewhere.

Another victim, who was only 12-years-old, was asked to come to Pevzner’s home. Once there, Pevzner allegedly showed the boy pornographic movies and then molested him.

Update 3:40 am CDT 8-12-2014 – Here's a Ma'ariv article on Pevzner's arrest, the charges against him and his indictement dated 8-6-2014.