Inside Israel

Celebrated Haredi children’s author accused of sexually abusing teen girls

Well-known Haredi children’s author Chaim Walder has been accused of taking sexual advantage of a number of teen girls. Walder, known as an educator and therapist in the community, allegedly used his popularity and status to commit the acts.

In an investigative report by the Haaretz newspaper published Friday, three women accused Walder, 52, of sexual abuse — two of them detailing incidents they said happened when they were minors. Walder has denied the allegations.

One woman said Walder began grooming her when she was sent to him for treatment at age 12, some 20 years ago, slowly moving from compliments to sexual acts. After she got her first period at 13, Walder told her this needed to be celebrated, and had sex with her at a hotel in Ramat Gan. She said she was traumatized and cried afterward.

Sexual encounters continued on a weekly basis, the woman said, sometimes several times a week. Though she was repulsed by him and only waited for sexual encounters to end, his status and his conversations with her, in which he treated her like an adult, kept her around him. She finally cut of ties around age 16. Several associates of the woman confirmed to Haaretz that she had revealed the details to them in the past.

Another woman told the paper that Walder began using her when she was 15, also some two decades ago, and had sex with her on multiple occasions. A third said he abused his position as her therapist when she came to him in her twenties to have sexual relations. She later filed a police complaint, but the case was closed by prosecutors who cited lack of evidence.

Advertisement

Walder’s attorneys said he denies the accusations “with disgust.”

They said the claims were “false accusations rooted in bold lies that amount to a blood libel” and “are unworthy of a response as they have no connection to reality.”

They further asserted that Walder was being targeted for his work to help children who have suffered from violence and abuse, and “as a result, some people have come together to harm him.”

They also said that their client had undergone a lie detector test in which he denied the accusations and was found to be truthful.

The claims against Walder follow a precipitous fall from grace for another lauded Haredi figure, Yehuda Meshi-Zahav, who attempted suicide in March following numerous allegations of rape and sexual assault. Meshi-Zahav, who founded the ZAKA emergency service and who was known for various social activities, left a note in which he denied the accusations.

Meshi-Zahav remains hospitalized in a coma since his attempt to take his own life.

Advertisement


What’s Hebrew for ‘fierce’?

In Streetwise Hebrew for the Times of Israel Community, each month we learn several colloquial Hebrew phrases around a common theme. These are bite-size audio Hebrew classes that we think you’ll really enjoy.

This month, we’re learning phrases on the topic of strength and power. Ready to get tough with us? 


Learn more


Learn more

Already a member? Sign in to stop seeing this


You’re serious. We appreciate that!

That’s why we come to work every day – to provide discerning readers like you with must-read coverage of Israel and the Jewish world.

So now we have a request. Unlike other news outlets, we haven’t put up a paywall. But as the journalism we do is costly, we invite readers for whom The Times of Israel has become important to help support our work by joining The Times of Israel Community.

For as little as $6 a month you can help support our quality journalism while enjoying The Times of Israel AD-FREE, as well as accessing exclusive content available only to Times of Israel Community members.

Advertisement


Join Our Community


Join Our Community

Already a member? Sign in to stop seeing this

Facebook Comments Box

Related Articles

5 Comments

  1. I love your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you design this website yourself or did you hire someone to do it for you? Plz reply as I’m looking to construct my own blog and would like to know where u got this from. kudos

  2. I’ve learned new things from the blog post. One other thing I have discovered is that usually, FSBO sellers will certainly reject anyone. Remember, they would prefer to not use your services. But if you maintain a comfortable, professional relationship, offering guide and staying in contact for four to five weeks, you will usually be capable to win an interview. From there, a listing follows. Many thanks

  3. I am not sure where you are getting your information, but great topic. I needs to spend some time learning more or understanding more. Thanks for magnificent info I was looking for this info for my mission.

  4. It’s appropriate time to make some plans for the future and it is time to be happy. I’ve read this post and if I could I desire to suggest you some interesting things or suggestions. Maybe you can write next articles referring to this article. I want to read more things about it!

  5. Is anyone in a position to recommend cheap Concrete Bricks B2B Marketing List? Thank you 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button