After being convicted last month of 59 charges, including sexual abuse and child endangerment, Nechemya Weberman was sentenced to 103 years in prison on Tuesday inside a Brooklyn courtroom.
Weberman, 54, was a religious counselor in the ultra-Orthodox Satmar Hasidic community and many of the alleged assaults are said to have taken place inside his office.
One of his victims, who is now 18, started to be abused when she was just 12 years old. The victim spent four days on the witness stand telling the court about her ordeal and detailing the abuse she suffered at the hands of Weberman.
“I remember how I would look in the mirror I saw a girl who didn’t want to live in her own skin,” she told the court. “A sad girl who wanted to live a normal life, but instead was being victimized by a 50-year-old man who forced her to perform sickening acts again and again.”
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The young woman revealed that when she visited Weberman for counseling he would force her to perform sex acts and act out scenes from pornographic movies. This happened on a regular basis, sometimes occurring up to four times a week. Weberman reportedly may have had as many as ten other victims.
Weberman chose not to speak at the sentencing but his attorney stated that his client maintains his innocence. If upheld, the length of the sentence handed down to Weberman would mean he will spend the rest of his life in jail. According to Brooklyn District Attorney Charles J. Hynes, Weberman’s ending up behind bars would not have been possible were it not for “the courage of a young woman.”