Man accused of sexually assaulting two Jewish boys more than a decade ago

Harrow Crown Court heard how the man knew the boys through their connections in the community


A 55-year-old man has gone on trial in London accused of sexually assaulting two Jewish boys more than a decade ago.

Jair Philippe Klein has pleaded not guilty to seven counts of assault on children under the age of 16 - one aged 10 to 11 at the time, the other 13 to 14.

Prosecuting counsel Emma Smith described how he had come to know the boys through their connections in the Jewish community.

He “used his position to befriend, to groom and to sexually abuse these two boys,” she told the jury at Harrow Crown Court.

In 2015, he had pleaded guilty in a court in Israel to the sexual assault of a male under 15, she said, involving the child of a family he had been staying with there.

“That conduct demonstrated that he had a sexual interest in boys under 16” and was prepared to act on it “for his sexual gratification,” she said.

It was after the two boys learned of the Israeli case a few years later that they came forward with their allegations to the Metropolitan Police.

But Klein had told police that their accusations were “a fabrication, all made up,” Ms Smith said.

In an interview with police in 2019 which was played to the jury, the younger of the two complainants, who was between 10 and 11 at the time of the alleged incidents, said that the defendant had “treated him like a king”, “like him I’m the most important person in the world”. Klein bought him gifts, took him swimming in Hampstead and also out on motorcycle rides.

“He was a fun guy to hang out with,” he said.

The jury heard how Klein had offered to buy a gift one time and sought something in return. Klein touched him inappropriately - something which happened on another three occasions.

The complainant said he had enjoyed the experience - “I was a child, I didn’t know any better.”

In another incident they had started kissing on a bed and the man performed a sex act, he said.

At the time, it felt “very good,” he had told police, but then he felt relieved it was over and “I never wanted it to happen again”.

It was "the most disgusting thing I have ever done in my life," he said.

Recalling the incident, he said it had felt “like my body had been… violated. It was the last straw”.

He said he had been “too ashamed” to tell his parents but he did speak to his older brother, who told him, “Don’t you worry, everything is going to be OK.”

He decided to “block it, everything he did, out of my mind”.

Giving evidence from behind a curtain on the opening morning of the trial on Tuesday, he said he had been “worried” and “scared” when he had learned of Klein’s conviction in Israel.

But defence counsel Lisa Wilson contended that it was her client’s case that none of what the complainant had described had “happened at all”.

The trial continues.

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