US sex offender admits groping woman on El Al flight
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US sex offender admits groping woman on El Al flight

36-year-old admits touching sleeping victim in the chest, upper thigh and hand; faces up to 10 years in prison

Illustrative photo of an El Al flight taking off at Ben Gurion Airport. (Moshe Shai/Flash90/File)
Illustrative photo of an El Al flight taking off at Ben Gurion Airport. (Moshe Shai/Flash90/File)

NEWARK, New Jersey — A registered sex offender has admitted that he improperly touched a sleeping woman aboard a flight from Israel to the US.

Federal prosecutors in New Jersey say Yoel Oberlander pleaded guilty Wednesday to assault with intent to commit stalking. The 36-year-old New York man faces up to 10 years in prison when he’s sentenced June 28.

Prosecutors say the groping occurred aboard an El Al flight from Tel Aviv to Newark Liberty airport in May.

The victim was sitting next to Oberlander. He admitted touching her in the chest, upper thigh and hand without her consent.

Authorities have said Oberlander was convicted in 2002 in New York of sexually abusing an 11-year-old girl.

His defense lawyer declined to comment.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press.

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