More women step forward with allegations of sexual assault by top doctor

Arie Levine, pediatric gastroenterology head at Wolfson hospital, accused of multiple offenses over several years, including rape of a minor under his care

Prof. Arie Levine appears at Tel Aviv Magistrate's Court on October 4, 2021 (Screen grab/Channel 12 news)
Prof. Arie Levine appears at Tel Aviv Magistrate's Court on October 4, 2021 (Screen grab/Channel 12 news)

A fresh police complaint has reportedly been filed against Prof. Arie Levine, the senior doctor arrested Sunday on suspicion of multiple sex offenses against female patients in his care, including at least one minor.

According to the Walla news site on Wednesday, multiple additional women have stepped forward with allegations of sexual assault since Levine’s name was cleared for publication in the press earlier this week.

At least one other woman has filed a police complaint, the report said.

Levine, 64, is expected to appear at the Tel Aviv Magistrate’s Court on Thursday for a hearing on his remand after he was ordered to remain in custody earlier this week.

He has denied wrongdoing.

Levine is director of the Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition Unit at Holon’s Wolfson Medical Center and practices at a private clinic.

Police said Monday that among his suspected crimes, committed over a number of years, was the rape of a girl under the age of 14.

The Tel Aviv Magistrate’s Court (Nati Shohat/Flash90)

The doctor “took advantage of the plight of the patients, and in most cases the alleged sexual offenses were committed under the guise of treatment,” police said.

The arrest followed an undercover investigation together with Tel Aviv District prosecutors into the allegations against the doctor, who was not named in the initial police statement. With the arrest, police also seized documents and other evidence that may be relevant to the case.

Police said they are prepared for the possibility that more women will come forward as a result of the details of the case being publicized.

Authorities first became aware of the matter when a woman filed a complaint with the hospital’s sexual harassment official two months ago alleging the doctor had raped her nine years earlier when she was a minor, according to reports.

The woman who filed the complaint initially refused to go to the police, but was eventually persuaded to do so, according to reports. Another of those allegedly assaulted by the doctor is the mother of a patient who was a minor.

As the investigation progressed, police were in contact with women and girls from across the country who were allegedly victims of the doctor, the statement said.

Reports quoted victims as describing the doctor as “God” because of his ability to treat their difficult medical conditions and saying they felt “betrayed” by his assaults.

Hagit Pe’er, head of the Na’amat women’s rights group, described the case as “shocking” and called for moral support to be given to those women who came forward.

“It is horrible to discover that a person like this carried out his acts in a place that was supposed to be the safest place that there is for those women, such as a hospital or medical clinic,” she said.

Stuart Winer contributed to this report.

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