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Go Back   Casebook Forums > Ripper Discussions > Police Officials and Procedures > Anderson, Sir Robert

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Old 01-27-2015, 04:18 PM
drstrange169 drstrange169 is offline
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Default The Jewish tradition of mesirah

Today's Melbourne "Age" newspaper has an article about a Jewish sex abuse scandal that gets very interesting to ripperphiles.


Members of Australia's Orthodox Jewish community who assist police investigating alleged child sexual abuse have been pressured to stay silent, secret tape recordings and emails obtained by Fairfax Media reveal.
The details of the pressure being exerted on victims have emerged as the Royal Commission into child sex abuse prepares to hold public hearings next week to examine the responses of Melbourne and Sydney's yeshivah centres to alleged offences dating back to the 1980s.

In one secret, legally recorded 2011 telephone conversation, prominent Melbourne criminal lawyer Alex Lewenberg tells a victim of St Kilda Yeshivah centre sex offender David Cyprys he should not have co-operated with police.
"I am not exactly delighted that another Yid [Jew] would assist police against an accused no matter whatever he is accused of and that is the reason why I was very disappointed," Mr Lewenberg, who was defending Cyprys at the time of the conversation, told the victim.
"Because there is a tradition, if not a religious requirement that you do not assist against Abraham and I was concerned about that moserprinciple. Moseris well known."
Mr Lewenberg was referring to the Jewish tradition of mesirah under which a Jew does not inform secular authorities about another Jew. Members of ultra-orthodox communities who assist police are often ostracised and given the derogatory label of "moser" or informer.
Mr Lewenberg was telephoned by the victim in October 2011 after the victim had heard talk in the Jewish community about the barrister's alleged displeasure at him assisting police with Cyprys' prosecution.
On the recording, Mr Lewenberg initially said he should not be speaking to the victim as the matter was before court. But he then went on to express his thoughts on the victim's assistance to police and his dislike of a Jew informing secular authorities on another Jew.

Victoria's Legal Services Commissioner, Michael McGarvie, said while he could not comment on the specific conversation between Mr Lewenberg and the victim, there was a general principle that made it impermissible for a lawyer to tell a witness they could not inform police about a matter because of a religious or community rule.
Fairfax Media has also obtained a series of emails which show how three influential members of St Kilda's Yeshivah community asserted that the victim's assistance to police in the Cyprys case had "crossed red lines" and had the "potential to undermine the [Yeshivah] centre."
They warned that if the victim continued "to stick his nose where it doesn't belong", a new article about the victim would be posted on an "anonymous blog".
In comments posted online in 2013, the same victim was described by Yeshivah members as a "sick man" and a "coward" who should be "thrown out" of the community.
The victim's employer was also contacted by prominent members of Melbourne's Orthodox Jewish community and told about the assistance he had given to police.
Two men previously employed by the St Kilda Yeshivah school, security guard Cyprus and teacher David Kramer, are serving custodial sentences after last year being found guilty of serious child sex offences dating back to the early 1990s.
In Kramer's case, the school offered to pay for him to go to Israel after it received complaints about him from parents. He then went to the United States, where he raped a 12-year-old boy and served a lengthy jail sentence.
A third man, Aron Kestecher, was last year to face court on child sex abuse charges allegedly committed at St Kilda's Yeshivah centre in the 2000s. But he took his own life before he went to trial.
Leading figures associated with the St Kilda Yeshivah are expected to face allegations in the royal commission hearings that they failed to report suspected abusers to police and sought to cover up crimes.
In Cyprys' committal in 2012, Victorian magistrate Luisa Bazzani said it was "unfathomable" that the former principal of the Yeshivah College in St Kilda, Rabbi Abraham Glick, did not know of the sexual abuse that was occurring there during the 1980s.
In Sydney, a former prominent member of Bondi's Yeshiva Centre, Daniel Hayman, last year pleaded guilty to indecent assault of a minor and received a 19-month suspended sentence. A bizarre legal oddity allowed him to escape conviction for the alleged assault of a 12-year-old girl.
The NSW Ombudsman is investigating senior leaders of the Sydney Yeshiva centre over whether they failed to comply with laws that required them to report Hayman's abuse during the 1980s to the Ombudsman.
One of those senior leaders under scrutiny is Rabbi Boruch Lesches, a senior figure at the Bondi Yeshiva Centre in the 1980s, who was aware of complaints about Hayman but never reported him to authorities.
In an audio recording broadcast by Fairfax Media in 2013, Rabbi Lesches claimed some of Hayman's alleged victims may have consented.
In the conversation between Rabbi Lesches and one of Hayman's victims, the rabbi cautioned against involving the police, stating that do so would ensure "everybody gets dirty, everybody suffers".
After Fairfax Media released the recordings of Rabbi Lesches, he released a statement apologising for his comments. But in that statement the New York-based rabbi also claimed he was "never informed of any allegations involving minors prior to this call."
However, comments made by Rabbi Lesches during the taped conversation contradict his denial. He is recorded as saying how he warned Hayman during the 1980s to stay away from a boy who was 10 years his junior.
"Absolutely, that's right, absolutely. I told him to stay away and I told him if this will not stop both of them will have to go away. Absolutely emes [truth], you got it right," he is recorded as saying.

Richard Baker and Nick McKenzie
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Old 01-27-2015, 06:30 PM
Ginger Ginger is offline
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That's fascinating indeed. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mesirah talks about it, and has links to other articles.


Also, "St. Kilda's Yeshiva" just sounds wrong.
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Old 01-27-2015, 06:40 PM
Monty Monty is offline
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I discuss this in my book, and its possible effect during the seaside identification process.

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Old 01-27-2015, 08:16 PM
Errata Errata is offline
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Mesirah is complicated, but does not apply to crimes involving murder or some other harm to members of the community. Invoking it in the sex abuse scandal was wrong, both morally and factually. And to the best of my recollection, that lawyer got spanked for it pretty hard, as did the leaders of the Yeshiva center.

The Wikipedia article is pretty vague. This link gives a very good breakdown of what is involved.

http://www.jlaw.com/Articles/mesiralaw2.html

But the basic thing to remember about Mesirah is that it has less to do with Jewish law, and more to do with collaborators. People deliberately victimizing their own people by participating in an abusive external system. It comes from the Roman occupation, and was honed in Germany during the Crusades, The Inquisition, and the construction of the Pale. Reporting Jews to Inquisitors for continuing to practice Judaism is Mesirah. Reporting a fellow Jew for reading books deemed seditious to Russian authorities is Mesirah. These are really the cardinal examples. But it's not codified law. It's specific, but never legitimized. We have rabbinic law. Mesirah is a social punishment. Sort of how a rapist gets thrown in jail by a court, but is shunned by his community.

Turning over a murderer has never been part of Mesirah.

Now there are some ultra orthodox communities whose definition of Mesirah is different. Much more stringent. To the best of my knowledge no such ultra orthodox sect existed in London at that time (though there is now). I checked on that for something else. All rabbis in London were part of the Rabbinical council headed by the Chief Rabbi of London. That doesn't always happen, it isn't the case now. But it was then. The Chief Rabbi of London (or in this case, his delegate) required the other rabbis to participate in this investigation. In other words, don't conceal a suspect, and be hospitable should a cop show up asking questions.

Dr. Adler had a longstanding record of not interfering in English law, except when it came to marriage and divorce. He tried to get Jewish custom legal, it didn't work out. Mostly because in Jewish custom a woman had far more rights with divorce and marriage contracts than Anglos did. He was devoted to keeping Jewish law intact, but he never saw a conflict with English law. His big thing was education. Formalized Jewish schools. Which he got, and his standard was that any child completing these schools would be ready for admission into University. So he was not ideologically committed to isolationism.

He and the Queen also knew each other. They apparently quite liked one another. And he was well respected in London. He got sued for declaring a butcher tref, and the court wouldn't even listen to the defense, stating that the courts didn't have the right to hear the argument, that the province of what was and was not Kosher was solely that of the Chef Rabbi. Dr. Adler had a good thing with the queen, the government, the courts. He would never have condoned a Rabbi shielding the Ripper. And since every rabbi was on that council, no rabbis were given the opportunity to thwart him without retiring from the council, and no one did. Mesirah not supported by the rabbinical council is not Mesirah. It was not supported. And had not been since I think Dr. Adler took over the job in 1845 maybe? He was an English Jew, a westernized Jew. He was specifically chosen to interact with the modern world, not just the Jewish community. And I don't think it was supported before Dr. Adler, but the pockets of Judaism were more fractured at that point, so the Chief Rabbi's influence was not at pervasive.

English government did not qualify for Mesirah. And since Zionism was just getting big, no one had to be there that didn't want to be there. And the people who were developing the super strict Mesirah were in Palestine, not England.
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Old 01-28-2015, 01:24 AM
drstrange169 drstrange169 is offline
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Thanks for the extra info, Errata.
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Old 01-28-2015, 01:39 AM
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Very informative thanks Errata.
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Old 01-28-2015, 04:55 AM
Ausgirl Ausgirl is offline
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Quote:
But the basic thing to remember about Mesirah is that it has less to do with Jewish law, and more to do with collaborators. People deliberately victimizing their own people by participating in an abusive external system.
Which has been twisted into people victimising their own, in an abusive -internal- system. No different to the Catholics, Anglicans, Mormons, Hindus, it happens everywhere because it's *permitted* to happen. Perhaps the people comprising religious communities need to ask themselves WHY. And then promptly get the pitchforks out.

Makes me so angry.

Thanks from me, too, Errata for that information.
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Old 01-28-2015, 09:07 AM
Errata Errata is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ausgirl View Post
Which has been twisted into people victimising their own, in an abusive -internal- system. No different to the Catholics, Anglicans, Mormons, Hindus, it happens everywhere because it's *permitted* to happen. Perhaps the people comprising religious communities need to ask themselves WHY. And then promptly get the pitchforks out.

Makes me so angry.

Thanks from me, too, Errata for that information.
Well, Jews have been pretty lucky (or unlucky) that in the past 1000 years a majority of our time was spent in external abusive governments. The irony is that when a culture or religion finally feels safe is when it turns on itself. The incident in Melbourne was one of the first of it's kind (as a free people) outside of Israel, since maybe ever. And there have been a couple of incidents in New York. Now Israeli's feel embattled and feel like they face a real enemy. Any "us or them" situation creates this, no matter who you are. So Israel doesn't really count because people are out to get them. The reasons why don't factor in. But in Melbourne, New York, London, most of Western culture (barring France) there is no more external threat. Making a declaration of Mesirah just an abuse. There are no sot many of us that it happens often, but there are not so many of us, so it's likely our statistics are up there with other cultures. Not Catholicism, they have the distinction of a long history of being in power, so their motives are different. Different mechanism really, but the same effect.
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Old 06-04-2015, 04:23 AM
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St.Kilda was named after the schooner "Lady of St.Kilda" once owned by Sir Thomas Dyke Acland.

Acland Street is a main street.
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Old 06-05-2015, 06:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drstrange169 View Post
Today's Melbourne "Age" newspaper has an article about a Jewish sex abuse scandal that gets very interesting to ripperphiles.


Members of Australia's Orthodox Jewish community who assist police investigating alleged child sexual abuse have been pressured to stay silent, secret tape recordings and emails obtained by Fairfax Media reveal.
The details of the pressure being exerted on victims have emerged as the Royal Commission into child sex abuse prepares to hold public hearings next week to examine the responses of Melbourne and Sydney's yeshivah centres to alleged offences dating back to the 1980s.

In one secret, legally recorded 2011 telephone conversation, prominent Melbourne criminal lawyer Alex Lewenberg tells a victim of St Kilda Yeshivah centre sex offender David Cyprys he should not have co-operated with police.
"I am not exactly delighted that another Yid [Jew] would assist police against an accused no matter whatever he is accused of and that is the reason why I was very disappointed," Mr Lewenberg, who was defending Cyprys at the time of the conversation, told the victim.
"Because there is a tradition, if not a religious requirement that you do not assist against Abraham and I was concerned about that moserprinciple. Moseris well known."
Mr Lewenberg was referring to the Jewish tradition of mesirah under which a Jew does not inform secular authorities about another Jew. Members of ultra-orthodox communities who assist police are often ostracised and given the derogatory label of "moser" or informer.
Mr Lewenberg was telephoned by the victim in October 2011 after the victim had heard talk in the Jewish community about the barrister's alleged displeasure at him assisting police with Cyprys' prosecution.
On the recording, Mr Lewenberg initially said he should not be speaking to the victim as the matter was before court. But he then went on to express his thoughts on the victim's assistance to police and his dislike of a Jew informing secular authorities on another Jew.

[i]Victoria's Legal Services Commissioner, Michael McGarvie, said while he could not comment on the specific conversation between Mr Lewenberg and the victim, there was a general principle that made it impermissible for a lawyer to tell a witness they could not inform police about a matter because of a religious or community rule.
Fairfax Media has also obtained a series of emails which show how three influential members of St Kilda's Yeshivah community asserted that the victim's assistance to police in the Cyprys case had "crossed red lines"
Richard Baker and Nick McKenzie
http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/ca...0150605-ghfwdt

This article by John Silvester,who's father was a career Policeman,casts light on Police covering up for their own religious order.

Might be pertinent to the Police who were "looking" for Jack the Ripper.

At one stage George Hutchinson, who gained military training aboard "Exmouth" as a youth, had an unexplained child living with him.
The child's parents lived at Primrose Street.

George Phillips lived in Spital Square.

We are aware of the attempt at gaining a pardon after Hutchinson came forward.

Those streets are an extension of Hanbury Street.
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