Jerusalem – Pedophile Chupah Witness Ruled Halachically Invalid, Greenlighting Annulment Of Aguna’s Marriage By Private Beis Din

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      Oshrat Ben-Haim is seen at the rabbinical court in Haifa. (Batya Kahana-Dror)Jerusalem – An Israeli woman’s quest to obtain a get from her husband may have finally come to an end after a private rabbinical court in Haifa annulled the marriage because one of the witnesses was a convicted pedophile when the wedding took place.

    According to Ynet, Oshrat Ben-Haim spent eight years trying to obtain a get from her husband Sharon. Married in 2008, the couple lived in New Jersey, but their marriage began to deteriorate, and two years later while on a family trip to Israel with their infant daughter, Oshrat Ben-Haim filed for a divorce.

    While Sharon Ben-Haim initially signed a get freeing his wife from the marriage, he elected not to give over the necessary documents after the two had a serious disagreement. Ben-Haim returned to New Jersey without his family and since that time, the couple has had a bitter relationship that has included an international child custody battle and a public shaming campaign intended to pressure Ben-Haim.

    While the Haifa Rabbinical Court eventually ordered Sharon Ben-Haim to divorce his wife, he refused to do so and the beis din refused to take punitive action against him, reported The Jerusalem Post.

    Additional efforts to have the marriage annulled by the Haifa Rabbinical Court on the grounds that a pedophile is an invalid witness under Jewish law also failed.

    An independent Orthodox rabbinical court, however, agreed to annul the marriage retroactively, welcome news for Oshrat Ben-Haim who is now nine months pregnant by another man and was facing the possibility that her child could be born with the halachic status of a mamzer.

    The beis din was headed by Rabbi Daniel Sperber of Jerusalem’s Old City whose feminist views sometimes raise eyebrows, Rabbi Michael Avraham and a third rabbi who chose to remain anonymous.

    The same rabbinical court annulled a controversial 23 year long marriage in June, a decision that was later echoed by the Haifa Rabbinical Court.

    Rabbi Sperber said that the private beis din did not view itself as a higher authority than the Haifa Rabbinical Court, but instead chose not to rely on unnecessary stringencies.

    Batya Kehana-Dror, head of Mavoi Satum which advocates for agunos, said that the Haifa Rabbinical Court had failed when it refused to annul the Ben-Haim marriage because of the invalid witness. She praised the independent beis din’s ruling, calling it a “watershed moment” for the public.

    “These rulings constitute public pressure on the rabbinical courts to give halachic solutions on the one hand and demonstrate the need for privatizing the establishment on the other hand,” said Kehana-Dror.

    But the private beis din’s ruling is not universally accepted. It was strongly denounced by Israel’s Rabbinical Courts Administration, which has full jurisdiction over all marriages, divorces and conversions in the country.

    “The decision of the private-pirate ‘rabbinical court’ lacks, obviously, any significance and has no validity,” said the Rabbinical Courts Administration. “No ordained rabbi in Israel or abroad will marry her since she is still a married woman.

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    32 COMMENTS

    1. Only question I have, is how can someone who was convicted in a secular court become pasul for eidus? Wouldn’t we need 2 witnesses and such, and a proper ruling of a beis din to nullify a witness? Doesnt one need to publically flaunt aveiros like breaking shabbos, or promiscuity to be bad as a witness? As evil as it was, I am sure his pedophelia was a secret, so how can his eidus be pasul?

      • כָּל הַבָּא עַל עֶרְוָה מִן הָעֲרָיוֹת דֶּרֶךְ אֵבָרִים, אוֹ שֶׁחִבַּק וְנִשַּׁק דֶּרֶךְ תַּאֲוָה וְנִהְנָה בְּקֵרוּב בָּשָׂר–הֲרֵי זֶה לוֹקֶה מִן הַתּוֹרָה: שֶׁנֶּאֱמָר “לְבִלְתִּי עֲשׂוֹת מֵחֻקּוֹת הַתּוֹעֵבֹת” (ויקרא יח,ל); וְנֶאֱמָר “לֹא תִקְרְבוּ לְגַלּוֹת עֶרְוָה” (ויקרא יח,ו), כְּלוֹמַר לֹא תִקְרְבוּ לִדְבָרִים הַמְּבִיאִין לִידֵי גִּלּוּי עֶרְוָה. [ב] וְהָעוֹשֶׂה דָּבָר מֵחֻקּוֹת אֵלּוּ, הֲרֵי הוּא חָשׁוּד עַל הָעֲרָיוֹת

        עֲשָׂרָה מִינֵי פַּסְלָנוּת הֶם; כָּל מִי שֶׁנִּמְצָא בּוֹ אֶחָד מֵהֶן, הֲרֵי הוּא פָּסוּל לְעֵדוּת. וְאֵלּוּ הֶן–הַנָּשִׁים, וְהָעֲבָדִים, וְהַקְּטַנִּים, וְהַשּׁוֹטִים, וְהַחֵרְשִׁים, וְהַסּוֹמִים, וְהָרְשָׁעִים, וְהַבְּזוּיִין, וְהַקְּרוֹבִין, וְהַנּוֹגְעִין בְּעֵדוּתָן; הֲרֵי אֵלּוּ עֲשָׂרָה

        הָרְשָׁעִים פְּסוּלִין לְעֵדוּת מִן הַתּוֹרָה, שֶׁנֶּאֱמָר “אַל-תָּשֶׁת יָדְךָ עִם-רָשָׁע, לִהְיֹת עֵד חָמָס” (שמות כג,א); מִפִּי הַשְּׁמוּעָה לָמְדוּ, אַל תָּשֶׁת רָשָׁע עֵד. וְאַפִלּוּ עֵד כָּשֵׁר שֶׁיָּדַע בַּחֲבֵרוֹ שְׁהוּא רָשָׁע, וְאֵין הַדַּיָּנִין מַכִּירִין רִשְׁעוֹ–אָסוּר לוֹ לְהָעִיד עִמּוֹ, אַף עַל פִּי שְׁהִיא עֵדוּת אֱמֶת: מִפְּנֵי שֶׁמִּצְטָרֵף עִמּוֹ; וְנִמְצָא זֶה הַכָּשֵׁר הֵשִׁית יָדוֹ עִם הָרָשָׁע, עַד שֶׁנִּתְקַבְּלָה עֵדוּתוֹ

        אֵיזֶה הוּא רָשָׁע: כָּל מִי שֶׁעָבַר עֲבֵרָה שֶׁחַיָּבִין עָלֶיהָ מַלְקוּת–הֲרֵי זֶה רָשָׁע, וּפָסוּל לְעֵדוּת, שֶׁהֲרֵי הַתּוֹרָה קָרְאָה לַמְּחֻיָּב מַלְקוּת רָשָׁע, שֶׁנֶּאֱמָר “וְהָיָה אִם-בִּן הַכּוֹת, הָרָשָׁע” (דברים כה,ב). וְאֵין צָרִיךְ לוֹמַר לַמְּחֻיָּב מִיתַת בֵּית דִּין–שְׁהוּא פָּסוּל, שֶׁנֶּאֱמָר “אֲשֶׁר-הוּא רָשָׁע לָמוּת” (במדבר לה,לא).

        ד [ג] עָבַר עַל עֲבֵרָה שֶׁחַיָּבִין עָלֶיהָ מַלְקוּת מִן הַתּוֹרָה, הֲרֵי זֶה פָּסוּל מִן הַתּוֹרָה; וְאִם הָיָה הַחִיּוּב שֶׁבָּהּ מִדִּבְרֵיהֶם, הֲרֵי זֶה פָּסוּל מִדִּבְרֵיהֶם.

        Seems clear that if someone is suspected of being a sex offender it disqualifies one from עדות.

        The above is from the Rambam
        הלכות אסורי ביאה , הלכות עדות .

        • agreed. But 1. that needs to be established with valid testimony (not a secular court, I daresay) and 2. a pedophile is not someone who has relations with arayos, only a sex offender. Having sex with children would not disqualify one from eidus, although certainly pituy ktana ones hu, it is certainly considered rape and a dire sin.

    2. Certain classes of people are considered pasul l’eidus without specific witness testimony. The Gemorah lists professional gamblers, pigeon racers (another form of gambling) and cattlemen as having a chezkas pasul. The question is, are pedophiles as a class pasul. l’eidus also. Apparently the Beis Din ruled that they are, The problem with that, to me at least, is that those classes mentioned were passeled because of assumed dishonesty and corruptibility common in their businesses. Can that assumption be made of pedophiles?

      • Molesting children is not on the list.? Violation Shabbos is for death penalty, but pediphilia does not posul l aidus? And a perfectly sane, frum woman is posul l aidus? No wonder there is an off- the- derech problem.

        • Sorry Judith, but being a torah observant Jew is not easy or PC, We have three things that guide us, Halacha, Mesorah and Minhag, life is not easy, for example I don’t drive on Shabbos, I don’t carry unless there is a eruv [ and you oppose that], and I am limited as to how far I can walk [techum], Torah is not pc we don’t go around tikun haolam whatever the heck that liberal buzzword mean, we don’t have women Rabbis or male attendants in a women mikvah. We do have torah moshe msiani, we didn’t change for 2000+ years and we are not about to because something offends you. FYI the otd is a very minor problem probably no more then 10,000 in a community over 750,000, they are of course very vocal.
          PS 90% of the reader here dont give a hoot what your opinion is becouse in your view all frum people are ” uneducated crooks who game the system” so judith yes you are posel ladus, become a reform rabbi if you have a burning desire do be an aid

          • People who mis-quote others should not be edim, either. Go read my posts correctly . I never said that all frum people game the system. I said it’s a way of life among some groups.

            • Lol misquoting someone does pasel him for aidus, Sorry I belive in the torah regardless if its easy or hard, I don’t make up the rules as I go along [ unlike you]. and EXCUSSEEEEEEEEEE ME, I stand corrected, you said its a way of life to game the system on most “The community is not crime free if you count the welfare fraud and under-reporting income. The chesed you refer to includes the U.S. government handouts.” and “It’s a way of life to game the system. in some Jewish communities, not just a few rotten apples.”
              Why dont you become a reform rabbi and do aidus all the lesbian and besality weddings that you want, this way you spend you time construcivly [at least in your mind]

            • another of your made up judaism ‘people who misqoute others should not be kosher for eidim’ where did you get that besides in ‘jewish’ theologocal cemetary? in ‘yeshivas’ mehaarat?

            • its not only what you posted in this article but from all over and different sites . now go eat your words and if it werent that your a yisroel which i am besafak, i would add choke on it . Moral : ‘make sure your wods are soft and sweet for you never know when you might have to eat them’

          • ahhhhh! ‘sefusayim yishak mayshiv devorim nechonim’ these torah haters, destroyers are with us since the eiruv rav. and according to seforim hakdoshim judith , pauline and co are reincarnate of them

          • from this ‘judith’& co posting all over theres no question she dont belive in torah, not to mention torah misini, so she is reform , humanitarian or even a christian trollin around

          • sorry this are the people who are posel: lets not make our own halacha,

            “The following people are disqualified: a gambler with dice, a lender who collects interest, a chaser of doves, and a merchant who profits from produce of Shemittah.” The Talmud explains that each of these four activities falls within an expanded definition of theft because people who violate Torah laws or social norms in pursuit of money cannot be trusted to tell the truth. “Chasers of doves” are those training them for races (or to lure other people’s birds away), as well as those who bet on them; it includes pigeons, and by extension the use and luring of any animals in such fashion, domesticated or otherwise.

        • Judith,

          With all due respect ( which you don’t deserve…) you have no credibility to comment on those type of issues.
          Are you going to tell us (again ) to change the Torah according to your enlightened, liberal, PC views ??
          Well, we are NOT ready to capitulate to your demands , so please go elsewhere.
          You’ve proven yourself again & again & again, that you have a vitriolic hatred to the Torah & to those that cherish the Torah.

          • thank you for validating what many have posted all over in other articles and frum news sites.#9 ‘fine shmecker is really sefasayim yishak mayshiv devorim nechonom’ ‘veda mag shetoshive l’apikorsim’ in #12 she tries to sliter out of her hate for holy toirah observant yidden but cant . she still says not everybody but ‘Groups’. HEY (non)’JEW’dith which groups?

            • You would be a posel aid anyway because of your being a shotah, and a shotah cant be an aid, Oxford Handbook of Personality Disorders lists Pathological Bias as a mental disorder, it is obvious from your posts that you harbor an extreme hated towards Torah Observant Jews in general and Chasidisher communities in particular, biggest proof is two days ago on the yaffed article you had the gall to compare a Successful Chasidisher College grad to someone who smokes and does not get cancer.

          • m gold , feinshmeker, (18, #9

            is there anyway one can copy your ‘mayshiv devorim nechonim’ so we have it ready for such drek kofrim, soine hashem vetoruso like judith , yasmar, lakewood guy, pauline etc?

            • The dropout are a very small but vocal group of people, and for every dropout is a BT to take his/ her place so the number remain about the same, I know torah living is not for all but my gosh if this is not your cup of tea move to Kansas or Nevada where you don’t have Frum Jews and the cost of living if fraction of NY metro instead of living here and crying how miserable your former life was.

            • YOUR FUL OF BULL trying to slither out again. so what your trying to proove? the torah that hashem gave is not good, air so your are rejecting theres a spreme being who gave the torah…anyway no point in debating a koifer….shanu monos….what we said about you still stands.
              so what you trying to prove by saying ‘thats why people (meaning your kind, see above)reject the torah’? it bothers you that people reject it, i dont even doubt it that it doesnt.what you mean is thats why you i dont believe in it…so ,like we stated above what you represent eirove rav etc

            • people like you rejected the torah way before this ‘patriarchy’ buisness was in style the kat samech mem aka the left…all the way to torah relavation like we mentioned the eirev rav to start with…do us a favor and you & co go back to christian site so we dont waste time responding to prevent ‘minos damshiche abasrey’.

              and if you happen to be born jewish you have so many choices to join , christianity, reform, open ‘orthodox, islam (Oopps, also to strict as they took thier koran from the torah) hindu(maybe bowing to a cow wont do, but you can ‘reform’ it),protestant….look up ( maybe worshipping the devil will do) and join what suits you

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