Menahem ‘Manny’ Waks Sues Brother Over Claims Family Harboured Paedophile

THE man who blew the whistle on sexual abuse at the Yeshiva Centre is suing his brother over claims that he and his parents “harboured” a well-known paedophile.

Menahem “Manny” Waks says his brother Avraham “Avi” Yemini has refused to remove a Facebook post that claims: “Moshe Keller a notorious, convicted child sex offender is currently staying at the Waks’ family home which is located literally metres from a school frequented by hundreds of children”.

In a statement of claim lodged with the Supreme Court, Mr Waks claims the post published a year ago by his brother, who runs a Krav Maga, boxing, kickboxing and mixed martial arts training centre, suggests he and his parents were knowingly harbouring a paedophile for financial gain.

Mr Waks has acknowledged New York Rabbi Moshe Keller stayed with them for a number of days last year after unknowingly selling their home to his married daughter.

Keller was convicted of endangering the welfare of a child after a court heard he had inappropriately touched a 15-year-old boy, according to a report in the New York Times.

Mr Waks says Keller was asked to leave as soon as they became aware of the situation.

Last September the school told parents it had become aware of Keller’s presence and had informed police and taken “precautionary measures”.

Mr Waks says his brother’s posts held him up to ridicule and contempt and seriously harmed his reputation and embarrassed him.

Mr Waks claims his brother gave him no right of reply and refused to correct the post even after being informed of his version of events.

Relations between Mr Waks and Mr Yemini, who is co-founder of Caulfield Krav Maga, boxing, kickboxing and mixed martial arts gym, IDF Training, have been strained for some years.

Tensions have been high among some sections of Melbourne’s Jewish community since Mr Waks blew the whistle on abuse cover-ups at the ultra-Orthodox Jewish Yeshiva College.

Yeshiva College came under fire at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse over claims abuse victims were threatened and intimidated.

Following a damning probe by the royal commission last year, the Yeshiva Centre said it would replace its board of trustees and committee.

Last month allegations surfaced of persistent and ongoing bullying and harassment of staff at the college, and its sister school, Beth Rivkah College, by senior figures.

WorkSafe issued the schools, run by the Yeshiva Centre, an “improvement notice” over their failure to force staff to undergo specific training in relation to bullying.

Mr Waks is seeking damages and a permanent injunction preventing further publications of the allegedly defamatory material.

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