ZFA responds to Yaakov Litzman plea deal

News, Official Statements

The Zionist Federation of Australia notes media reports that former Deputy Health Minister Yaakov Litzman has signed a plea deal admitting to breach of trust for using his former position as deputy health minister to thwart the extradition to Australia of Malka Leifer, a former principal of an Orthodox girls school in Melbourne accused of sexually abusing minors.

The following quotes can be attributed to Jeremy Leibler, President of the Zionist Federation of Australia.

“If Yaakov Litzman has pled guilty to a charge of breach of trust during his tenure as Deputy Health Minister in relation to Malka Leifer’s extradition to Australia, it is difficult to comprehend how a small fine and suspended sentence delivers justice to the survivors of Leifer’s alleged abuse”.

“This plea deal does not send the right message to the survivors of sexual abuse or to others who seek to protect and cover up sexual abuse. While we respect the Israeli judicial process, we urge the Court which must approve the deal to have regard to the impact that Litzman’s alleged conduct has had and continues to have on survivors of sexual abuse and the public’s confidence in the integrity of Israel’s elected officials”.

“The Australian Jewish Community continues to stand with the brave survivors of Leifer’s alleged abuse. Our thoughts are with the survivors during what must be a very difficult time.”

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