A prominent Zionist Israeli rabbi has been convicted on charges of sexual assault against a minor.
Mordechai "Moti" Elon, former head of Yeshivat Hakotel in Jerusalem, was charged last year with sexually assaulting two of his students in 2003 and 2005.
The first case involved a 17-year-old male student who said that Elon hugged, stroked and kissed him on the neck under the pretext of comforting him after the death of someone close to him.
The second incident involved another 17-year-old male who was advised to seek guidance from Rabbi Elon during a personal crisis.
Elon apparently sat next to him in a way that made him feel uncomfortable and then stroke his face and other parts of his body above his clothing. He even gave the teenager a prolonged kiss on the face. The rabbi had another encounter with the same teenager two months later, after a lecture at Yeshivat Hakotel.
Elon hugged him and asked him to accompany him to the study hall. Then, he held him around the waist and began rubbing his genitals against him.
The investigation into the case began on February 2010 after revelations made by Takana religious forum set up to deal with allegations of sexual harassment in the religious Zionist community.