A NEW child-sex scandal has hit Melbourne's Jewish community, with a man to stand trial next year on more than 25 charges of sexual intercourse with a child under 16, sexual penetration of a child under 16 and indecent acts.
The name of the man, the organisation and the alleged victims have been suppressed, but the case involves a Jewish organisation.
Fairfax Media understands that the man is not Jewish, nor are some of the many victims, and some of the alleged offences took place overseas a decade ago. He will be tried in the County Court on July 15 next year.
The community was already in shock over other abuse cases at two schools in Melbourne, run by the Orthodox Chabad movement and the ultra-Orthodox Adass Israel.
Manny Waks, a victim while a student at Yeshivah College - part of the Chabad movement's Yeshivah Centre in East St Kilda - said the Jewish community faced a crisis in addressing sex abuse and that the communal leadership had mishandled the scandal.
Allegations have been made against two employees of Yeshivah College. Former security guard David Cyprys will stand trial next July on 41 charges of child rape and other sexual abuse against 12 students in the 1980s, and former teacher David Kramer is awaiting extradition from the United States over claims that he abused four boys at the college between 1989 and 1992. Kramer was jailed in 2008 in the US for molesting a 12-year-old boy at a synagogue there.
In the Adass case, Adass Israel girls' school principal Malka Leifer fled to Israel after allegations that she abused several girls.
Mr Waks said: ''We need to ensure we respond in the most appropriate way - with sensitivity, compassion, accountability and transparency. All perpetrators, their facilitators and those engaged in a cover-up must be held to full account.''
He said Jewish communal groups such as the Executive Council for Australian Jewry had not made tackling child sexual abuse a high-enough priority.
Dr Danny Lamm, president of the Executive Council, said the council was unequivocal in that the welfare of children came first, perpetrators should be investigated and charged and the community organisations should co-operate fully.
''The abuse of children in any way … is abhorrent, particularly when it is perpetrated by those in positions of trust and authority. All claims of abuse must be treated with the utmost seriousness,'' Dr Lamm said.