Samuel Kellner Accused Of Paying False Witness $10K To Testify In Rabbi Abuse Case

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Authorities have charged 49-year-old Samuel Kellner with paying a fraudulent witness $10,000 to falsely testify that a Brooklyn rabbi had sexually abused him as a child.

Rabbi Baruch Lebovits was sentenced to up to 32 years in prison last year after being convicted of eight counts of a criminal sexual act on the testimony of two other young victims — including Kellner’s son.

1010 WINS’ Stan Brooks with more details on the accusations

District Attorney Charles J. Hynes said a new indictment charges Kellner with perjury in addition to extortion and conspiracy. He was not charged with bribery or witness tampering.

Hynes said Kellner found out in 2008 that the rabbi had been accused of molesting a child, then got the second child to make similar claims.

Kellner also is accused of demanding $400,000 from the rabbi’s family while saying he could have other children make similar allegations against him.

“We allege that Kellner sent emissaries to Lebovits’ family telling them that he controlled the witnesses against Baruch Lebovits,” Hynes said, “and that in return for $400,000, he would ensure that the witnesses would not testify at trial.”

Hynes stated that while child abuse cases must be “prosecuted vigorously,” authorities should be mindful and “very, very careful about false complaints.”

Upon Kellner’s indictment, lawyers for Lebovits — led by famed Harvard professor Alan Dershowitz — rushed to start an appeal.

“We know this community, we love this community and there’s a real job that has to be done in that community to eliminate this culture of extortion,” Dershowitz said.

The appellate judge will allow Lebovits to be released on $250,000 bail pending his appeal. He will be under house arrest, be required to wear an ankle bracelet and will only be allowed to leave his home for a medical emergency.

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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Comments

One Comment

  1. FANNEI says:

    OY VEY
    CANNOT BELIEVE THIS IS A RABBI.

  2. calany says:

    The Coalition Against Legal Abuse is in full support of the Kellner family and their plight in fighting for justice. In the Jewish community, any victim of abuse who speaks out, gets shunned, excommunicated, slandered, and now, framed and arrested. Charles Hynes, we will not remain silent while our brethren are further abused through the law!

  3. hyter says:

    you’re an idiot. This story is at least 1 year old but took time to investigate and now the DA finished it. There were tapes recorded by Lebovitz son were this con man Kellner made his defends for 400,000 doll.

    1. hyter says:

      you’re an idiot. This story is at least 1 year old but took time to investigate and now the DA finished it. There were tapes recorded by Lebovitz son were this con man Kellner made his DEMAND for 400,000 doll.

  4. J says:

    DISGUSTING JEW! I know plenty of good decent Jews. But this one is disgusting!

  5. Anon says:

    I think it is a set up. The guys been advocating for victims of sexual abuse in his community and this is payback from a rich and powerful family backed by the Williamsburg/Satmar leadership as pay back. If this was the case why did they not bring up this evidence at the original trial, why wait until know?

  6. Don Juan says:

    ‘Thou shall not bear false witness against thy neighbor’ is one of the Ten Commandments.

  7. Johnny Handsome says:

    What people do for money. Destroys a mans life.

Comments are closed.

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