Woman who escaped from cult leader Goel Ratzon accuses state of neglecting her case

The woman who exposed a polygamist cult whose leader was later charged with enslaving and abusing his numerous “wives” says the authorities have abandoned her, giving her none of the help and benefits that other women in her predicament have received.

She was the first of Goel Ratzon‘s “wives” who managed to escape and file a police complaint, launching the covert inquiry that culminated with his arrest two years later.

Seven months ago he was indicted on charges of polygamy, rape, incest, enslavement and various forms of sexual abuse.

Prosecutors said Ratzon, 60, subjected his 21 partners and 38 children to strict disciplinary measures. For two decades he subjugated the women to satisfy his financial and sexual desires, the prosecutors said.

Recently, after she contacted the other women, she found out that the authorities helped them find housing, jobs and medical treatment, while she was offered none.

“I feel hurt,” she says. “After all the publicity and interviews they left me, a young woman of 24, to deal alone with something too big for me to handle. As far as they’re concerned, I’ve done my bit and they don’t need me anymore.”

Menachem Vegshel, deputy director general at the Social Affairs Ministry, confirmed that the women who were in the house at the time of the raid were looked after first. He said the first complainant wasn’t taken care of because “the police didn’t tell us there was any need.” He said the women with children were the ministry’s first priority.

The police said the ministry was involved from the start and knew of the complainant’s needs all along.

– Source / Full Story: Woman who escaped from cult leader accuses state of neglecting her case , Yaniv Kubovich, Haaretz, July 2, 2010 — Summarized by Religion News Blog
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Religion News Blog posted this on Friday July 2, 2010.
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