An investigation began following recent complaints received at the Beit Shemesh police station.
Police said last month — without naming Leifer — that the suspect committed indecent acts against minors in separate cases several years ago.
Malka Leifer, a teacher wanted in Australia for child sex abuse, seen on a screen via a video link during a court hearing at the Jerusalem District Court on July 20, 2020. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
In September, aMelbourne court ruledthat Malka Leifer must stand trial on 70 charges of child sex abuse at a Jewish ultra-Orthodox school where she worked.
Malka Leifer, an Israeli citizen who was extradited to Australia in January 2021, denies dozens of charges, including rape, indecent assault and child sexual abuse. The crimes allegedly took place between 2004 and 2008.
Leifer, 55, had fled Australia for Israel after the allegations against her surfaced in 2008, moving with her family to the Emmanuel settlement in the West Bank. Australian authorities pressed charges in 2012 and requested her extradition two years later.
Israel’s ultra-Orthodox community has been shaken by sexual abuse allegations against several leading figures.
In December last year, prominent children’s author and rabbi Chaim Walderdied by suicideafter the Haaretz newspaper published a story accusing him of sexually assaulting nearly two dozen people, including children — allegations he had denied.
The Walder story has been hailed as apotential turning pointin the approach to sexual abuse cases within the very insular community.
Then in January,news brokethat Dudi Shwamenfeld, a popular Haredi radio host, was accused by multiple women of sexual abuse, including one who said she was 16 when the abuse began.
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