A rabbi has pleaded not guilty to charges that he sexually abused a 10-year-old boy, according to the Nassau County District Attorney.
Rabbi Gary Lieberman, 56, of Far Rockaway, was arraigned at First District Court in Hempstead Friday and pleaded not guilty to two counts of first-degree sexual abuse, reported the DA's office. Judge Joy Watson set a $100,000 bail during the arraignment, the DA said. He will return to court Tuesday.
Lieberman abused a then 10-year-old boy between Nov. 4, 2009 and May 2010 while he was a teacher at Hebrew Academy of Nassau County in West Hempstead, Nassau County Police said.
Lieberman victimized the boy in a second floor learning center, where the two would be alone, as well as a bathroom in the school, police said. Lieberman allegedly told the victim that if he reported the abuse to anyone, "they would not believe him because he is a Rabbi," police said.
A Special Victims Squad investigation led to Lieberman's arrest Thursday after the academy's chairman of the board of education reported the incident, police said. How the abuse was discovered was not reported.
If convicted of all charges, Lieberman could serve up to 14 consecutive years in prison, said the DA's office.
Cops added that "Lieberman's employment at the Hebrew Academy was terminated" Aug. 31, but "he may have continued teaching at other private religious schools."
Detectives are asking anyone with information on additional victims to contact Special Victims Squad at 516-573-4022.