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Australian Chabad Faces Abuse, Fiscal Scandals

The two major branches of Chabad-Lubavitch in Australia are in the grip of separate crises that threaten to tar the movement’s reputation and undermine much of the work the Hasidic organization has invested in the six decades since it began operating here.

In Melbourne, a judge last week set the date for the trial of an Orthodox man who stands accused of 41 counts of child molestation at a Chabad-run school as several other separate child sex abuse cases continue to embroil the organization.

David Cyprys, a former security guard contracted to Yeshivah College, the Chabad boys school in Melbourne, has been ordered to stand trial next July. He pleaded not guilty to the charges, which include several counts of child rape allegedly perpetrated on students in the 1980s.

In a statement, principal Rabbi Yehoshua Smukler expressed his sympathy to the victims and said the college was cooperating with police. The college “loudly and clearly” condemns sexual abuse, he said, and has “robust policies and procedures that govern staff and student interaction.”

For more go to Haaretz.com

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