Sex abuse survivor ‘won’t forgive’ those who enabled perpetrator as he is released
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Sex abuse survivor ‘won’t forgive’ those who enabled perpetrator as he is released

Yehudis Fletcher, now a campaigner for support for victims, fumes as Parole Board pushes ahead with release of Todros Grynhaus today

Todros Grynhaus
Todros Grynhaus

A sexual abuse survivor has expressed her resentment as she revealed the man who repeatedly exploited her when she was a teenager is to be released today, Monday.

An application by Justice Secretary Dominic Raab has been refused after the Parole Board decided to release Todros Grynhaus, sentenced to 13 years in prison in 2015 for abusing her and another teenager.

Yehudis Fletcher, now a campaigner for support for victims, has expressed her frustration and anger at his release.

“I will never forgive those who enabled his abuse, either passively or actively, either with their actions or their silence,” she said.

“This past Wednesday I was informed an application to the Secretary of State for Justice for reconsideration of the parole board’s decision to release Todros Grynhouas had been refused.

“This morning, I have been informed that he will be released from prison today.

“In May 2015, Todros Grynhaus was convicted of seven offences of serious sexual abuse of two adolescent girls. I was one of them.

“I am grateful to my chosen family for their unwavering support.”

She also quotes Psalms 27: “When evil men assail me to devour my flesh, it is they, my foes and my enemies, who stumble and fall.”

Grynhaus, now 57, fled to Israel on a false passport, but was finally brought back to the UK and convicted in 2015 of several counts of serious sexual assault against two girls in Manchester, aged 13 and 15, for whom he was in a position of care. He was jailed for 13 years and two months.

He also had to pay one victim £45,000 and the other £35,000 in compensation as well as prosecution costs of £35,000.

Grynhaus had taught in Jewish schools in Britain and abroad before setting up a successful direct debit management business while filling a role as a respected figure within the Charedi community in Salford.

Sentencing him, Mr Justice Timothy Holroyde said: “This was a refined degree of cruelty on your part. You knew what you were doing and you knew what harm you would cause. You are an utter hypocrite. You professed your religion whilst cynically condemning your victims to suffer and giving false evidence seeking to cast blame on them.

“I have no doubt that you felt able to rely on a prevailing attitude of insularity which you hoped would prevent these allegations from ever coming to the attention of the police. You hoped that, at worse, you might have to pay a form of financial penalty as directed at the Beth Din.

“You believed that the combination of the girls’ sexual ignorance and the attitudes of some within your community would make it even harder for your victims to complain about you, and you came close to getting away with it.

“Even when the allegations were reported to the police, I am afraid the evidence I have heard shows that many in your community were taken in by your lying protestations of innocence. Others will have to examine their own consciences, and should reflect that, but for the courage of your two victims, your serious crimes would have gone unpunished.”

When confronted about the allegations – in front of his wife – by community leaders, he responded by saying “what would you like me to do about it?”.

Grynhaus was referred for therapy and the crimes were not reported to police for another two years. After he was arrested and charged he appeared in court, but was granted bail and fled to Israel on a false passport.

He was held there for attempting to enter the country fraudulently. After 18 months in an Israeli prison he was deported to England and eventually stood trial in January 2015. After a jury failed to reach a verdict, he was convicted at a second trial in May.

Described as “dangerous” and “highly manipulative”, Grynhaus molested the girls when they were between the ages of 13 and 16 between 2002 and 2005.

On more than one occasion, he forced the girls to perform sex acts on him. He also inappropriately touched the girls.

The Parole Board’s decision to release, announced in March, can only be reversed if it is deemed to be “irrational”. Raab had asked for him to be kept in prison as long ago as May 2021.

In its response to Raab’s application, released on May 10, Chitra Karve said: “I do not consider that the decision was irrational and accordingly the application for reconsideration is refused.

“The panel made a thorough assessment of risk, risk factors and protective factors, it took evidence from all witnesses, it carried out a weighing exercise with respect to any matters it disputed with the professional witnesses and investigated the risk management plan.

“I can see from the decision letter that the panel fully documents the
assessments provided by all the professional witnesses… the forensic psychologist and the community offender manager.

“These matters are not an exact science and in my view nowhere near the test for
irrationality.”

The panel that heard the case on 9 February 2022 consisted of a judge, a psychologist and an independent member. The hearing, held via a video link, was given details of Grynhaus’s offending, reports from psychologists, his
prison and community offender managers and his legal representatives. The panel also heard one of the victims read out their Victim Personal Statement.

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