Rabbi Berland indicted on sexual assault charges

By Ido Ben Porat (Arutz Sheva)
July 29, 2016

The Jerusalem District Attorney's office today (Friday) filed an indictment in the city's Magistrate Court against Rabbi Eliezer Berland on charges of indecent acts without consent, indecent acts towards a minor by exploiting a disciplinary and educational relationship, and aggravated assault.

In the indictment, Rabbi Berland is named as having served as the Rabbi and leader of the "Shuvu Banim" community and Yeshiva in Jerusalem, many of whose members were concentrated near his residences in Jerusalem and Beitar Ilit.

As part of the obligations associated with his position, he held meetings for purposes of religious and spiritual guidance and instruction with male and female members of his community, and others, in his house and other places.

The indictment states that Rabbi Berland took advantage of these meetings and his status on numerous occasions to commit sexual acts - without consent and while exploiting a disciplinary and educational relationship - with women and female minors.

Following the exposure of some of his deeds by a man who had discovered them, the indictment says, Rabbi Berland ordered two of his followers to assault the man.

As has been reported on Arutz Sheva, the extradition process of Rabbi Berland from South Africa was recently completed, involving the Israel Police, the International Division of the State Attorney's office, and Foreign Ministry elements.

The prosecution has requested that Rabbi Berland remain in custody until trial.