MELBOURNE (JTA) – A Jewish woman who said she had been molested repeatedly by her former principal called on Israel to extradite him back to their native Australia.
Dassi Erlich, a 29-year-old mother of one who said that her alleged molestation by Malka Leifer had left her emotionally scarred, made the plea Sunday during a speech at Melbourne’s Limmud conference of Jewish learning.
Leifer, who moved to Israel in 2008 shortly after molestation accusations against her surfaced, has skipped several extradition hearings because she had committed herself into psychiatric institutions for short periods, coinciding with her court dates. Leifer is wanted for questioning in Australia in connection with 74 charges of molestation, including rape, of several teenage girls, the ABC broadcaster reported.
If Leifer “is mentally ill, then she should get treated until she is well enough to be put on trial in Australia,” Erlich said. “It is unfathomable that, in 2017, the justice system of a Western country is being manipulated in such a way,” Erlich added.
Leifer, who is living in Israel with no restrictions on her freedom, in May was photographed participating in a Lag Ba’Omer religious celebration in Israel’s north, in what Erlich said was proof that any psychiatric complications affecting Leifer are not preventing her from leading what appears to be a normal life.