By Alex Ginsberg (NY Post)
March 8, 2010
A Brooklyn jury today convicted an orthodox rabbi of repeatedly sexually abusing a 16-year-old classmate of his son.
The panel of 10 women and two men deliberated less than half a day before finding the rabbi, Baruch Lebovits, 58, guilty of eight counts of sexual abuse.
The jury acquitted him of two counts.
"Justice was served," said the father of the abused boy, whose name is being withheld by The Post.
The teen said the rabbi lured him into his car by offering to let him drive, then unzipped his fly and performed oral sex on him.
Lebovits had no reaction as the jury forewoman read the verdict, but sniffles and gasps were heard from the roughly 30 assembled friends and relatives.
Justice Patricia DiMango ordered the rabbi remanded pending sentence. He faces up to 32 years behind bars.
"I understand that there are a significant number of Jewish holidays coming up, and I am sorry," she said.
The two not-guilty verdicts applied to charges during the summer months of 2004, when testimony showed that the victim was at an upstate camp with limited ability to visit Brooklyn.
"We're extremely disappointed," said lawyer Arthur Aidala. "We were hoping that the jury was going to see things differently...Mr. Lebovits still maintains his innocence."