A prominent figure on the modesty committee of Brooklyn’s Chasidic Satmar community is standing trial accused of 88 counts of sexual abuse of a young girl, which included forcing her to watch and re-enact pornography.
The alleged victim, then aged 12, had been sent to 54-year-old Nechemya Weberman for counselling by her religious school because she was deemed rebellious, the New York Daily News has reported.
The girl’s mother told a Brooklyn court this week that she was forced to pay $12,800 for counselling sessions for her daughter who read magazines such as People and Cosmopolitan, wore tights that were not deemed thick enough and asked her teachers searching questions about religion.
The now 17-year-old girl said on the stand this week that in these sessions she was forced to watch pornography and then “copy what was in the porn”.
The strictly Orthodox Satmar community has rallied behind the alleged abuser, reportedly raising funds for his defence.
Three men have been charged with harassment after reportedly stripping the alleged victim’s husband of his restaurant’s kosher certificate. Another man was accused of offering the girl $500,000 to drop the case.