Earlier today, Israel’s Supreme Court rejected the appeal notorious haredi child abuser Rabbi Elior Chen. Chen, who was considered to be a kabbalist, was convicted in November 2010 of multiple counts of extreme child abuse that left one child in a persistent vegetative state with permanent brain damage and others with other serious injuries.
Above: Rabbi Elior Chen
Israel's Supreme Court Rejects Appeal Of Horrific Haredi Child Abuser
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com
Earlier today, Israel’s Supreme Court rejected the appeal notorious haredi child abuser Rabbi Elior Chen, the Jerusalem Post reported.
Chen, who was considered to be a kabbalist, was convicted in November 2010 of multiple counts of extreme child abuse that left one child in a persistent vegetative state with permanent brain damage and others with other serious injuries.
Chen, who headed a small Jerusalem-based cult, was sentenced to 24 years in prison. Some of his followers received even longer prison terms in the abuse.
Under Chen’s direction, Chen and his followers used hammers, knives metal rods, burning hot rocks, and other implements of torture against very young children for months until one child suffered permanent brain damage and is expected to remain in a vegetative state for the rest of his life.
Among the cult members who tortured him was that child’s mother.
That mother also forced her children to eat feces; locked them in a suitcase for three days; repeatedly beat, whipped, and shook them; burned them; and put them in freezing showers – all in an effort to remove evil demons Chen said lived inside them.
That mother and others also poured salt on the burn wounds of one of her children and tortured him and others in additional ways.
Chen appealed his conviction on several grounds, primarily that his original defense lawyer, Ariel Atari, had had a conflict of interest. Atari allegedly had a pending indictment against him when he was supposed to be defending Chen.
Chen also claimed Atari was given insufficient time by the trial court to prepare for Chen’s defense, meant that Atari failed to put up a fight, and that Atari repeatedly failed to question prosecution witnesses or challenge prosecution arguments made against Chen.
Atari claimed that Chen knew about the pending indictment and other issues all along but made the decision not to fire Atari. Atari has also claimed that the Israel Bar Association agreed to his continued representation of Chen, despite the alleged conflicts.
The Supreme Court upheld Chen’s conviction.
Chen fled Israel in 2008 and hid out with supportive anti-Zionist haredi communities in Europe and Brazil who lauded his piety and Torah scholarship and addressed him as “rabbi.” But that support eventually faded as more and more information on the nature of the abuse surfaced. At one point a desperate Chen was reportedly trying to flee to Canada to hide out with the Lev Tahor haredi cult in rural Quebec. But he was unable to do it and, instead, was extradited from Brazil to Israel in 2009.
As news of the abuse spread, haredim were quick to point out that Chen did not have official rabbinic ordination – even though he had been called a rabbi and treated as a rabbi by a large swath of anti-Zionist haredi society before this and his lack of formal ordination was well known among anti-Zionist haredi leaders for years.