By Jewel Topsfield (The Age)
April 3, 2012
Parents allege that Yeshivah College in East St Kilda assisted the former teacher, David Kramer, to flee Australia in 1993 after they complained he had sexually abused their children.
Kramer was the focus of a Victoria Police probe launched last year into alleged sexual abuse at Yeshivah College between 1989 and 1993, which has widened to include other alleged perpetrators.
Magistrate Luisa Bazzani yesterday asked in court if Kramer had been brought to Australia by Victoria Police last month.
''More like mid-April, they will be travelling over to extradite him,'' Detective Senior Constable Lisa Metcher told the Melbourne Magistrates Court.
The Age understands that charges will be served this month and then Victoria Police will seek to extradite him.
A parent told The Age that Yeshivah College did not go to the police in 1993 despite accusations that Kramer, who taught Jewish studies and was a chaperone at camps, had sexually abused children at the school.
''We couldn't even get them to fire the guy,'' the parent said. A meeting was called at which parents intended to give Yeshivah College an ultimatum: sack Kramer or they would go to the police.
''Everybody was so scared of Yeshivah's power, no individual felt strong enough to go to police,'' the parent said.
Fifteen minutes before the meeting was due to start, the parents received a phone call telling them that there was no need to proceed. A week and a half later Kramer was ''spirited out of the country''.
''The way it was handled was wrong.'' The parent said if alleged sexual abuse occurred now, parents would be on the phone to police ''in a second''.
''Times were different 20 years ago. It's a very closed community and there was a reticence to talk about any of those things and to try to keep them under cover.''
The Age has been told some members of the Jewish community have been reluctant to speak to police due to concerns they would be violating the Jewish law of mesirah, which prohibits reporting a fellow Jew to civil authorities.
However the Rabbinical Council of Victoria has stressed the
prohibitions of mesirah did not apply in cases of abuse.
Sergeant Jo Stafford from the police media unit told The Age the matters involving David Kramer were still under investigation and it was inappropriate to comment further.
''No charges have been served at this time,'' Sergeant Stafford said.
Yeshivah College did not respond to an emailed inquiry from The Age.
Meanwhile, former Yeshivah College security guard David Samuel Cyprys, who has been charged with sexually molesting students from the school, yesterday had the conditions of his bail varied in the Melbourne Magistrates Court.
Cyprys has been charged with 51 counts of gross indecency, indecent assault, false imprisonment, common law assault, attempted indecent assault and rape involving 11 alleged victims.
He was yesterday ordered to report to police in St Kilda every Monday, Wednesday and Friday (excepting a religious holiday) instead of every day, as previously stipulated in his bail conditions.
Cyprys' committal hearing will begin on May 7.