Brooklyn rabbi who spent a decade on the run in Israel when he was accused of molesting two minor female relatives in 2010 appears in NYC court after being extradited
- Gershon Kranczer, a Brooklyn rabbi and former Yeshiva school principal, was accused in 2010 of sexually assaulting at least two of his minor female relatives
- The father of 14, married to his first cousin, was accused along with three of his sons: he fled to Israel with one of the three and went on the run
- In February 2020 he was arrested in Israel: in March 2021 he appeared in court in Brooklyn, and on Monday he was back before a judge in Brooklyn
A Brooklyn rabbi and former Yeshiva school principal appeared in court on Monday in New York on charges of sexually assaulting his minor female relatives, after spending a decade on the run in Israel.
Gershon Kranczer, 67, appeared before Judge Jill Konviser in Brooklyn Supreme Court in handcuffs belted to his waist.
He did not speak during the brief hearing, and appeared frail.
A father of 14 who is married to his first cousin, he is accused of molesting one of the girls from when she was eight years old, in August 1996, to February 2003.
A second girl was allegedly sexually abused from March 2001 to September 2002, when she was 11, Reuters reported.
He was accused of sexual abuse along with three of his sons, including one aged 15. The boys are accused of having abused other female relatives.
Gershon Kranczer, 67, is pictured in court on Monday in New York. He was initially accused in 2010, fled to Israel, and was on the run until his arrest by Israeli forces in January 2020
Kranczer was handcuffed on Monday, with the cuffs attached to a belt
The 67-year-old has been in jail since his extradition back to the United States in March 2021
Kranczer was founder and principal of the Yeshiva Tehila L’Dovid in Brooklyn – but resigned when the allegations emerged in 2010.
He then fled to Israel with one of his sons, Asher, who is legally blind.
Kranczer changed his name and went on the run, evading capture until January 2020, when Israeli authorities located and arrested him.
He was extradited and appeared in Brooklyn Supreme Court in March 2021, charged with sexual conduct against a child, criminal sexual act and sexual abuse.
He has been held in jail since then.
Kranczer is pictured after he was formally charged in New York City in March 2021
The rabbi is seen in March 2021, on his extradition to the United States
Jewish Community Watch, a watchdog organization that works to combat child sexual abuse within the Orthodox Jewish community, told Forward at the time of his arrest that the group was dismayed at how long it has taken to get justice.
‘We have been shocked at the horrific, drawn-out process that the victims have been forced to endure, all the while facing denial and ambivalence from so many in their community,’ Jewish Community Watch said in a statement.
‘The authorities in both the U.S. and Israel have much to answer for, in allowing this case to drag on for so long.’